Welcome!. Christopher Kaufman, Ph.D. (207) 839-5548 (office) (207-272-4672 (cell) e-mail: [email protected] web: kaufmanpsychological.org. My Brain Made Me Do It!!. The Educator’s Guide to Social Cognition and Emotional Regulation. Secondary Version.
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The Educator’s Guide to Social Cognition and Emotional Regulation
Christopher Kaufman, Ph.D.
In every person, even in such as appear most reckless, there is an inherent desire to attain balance.
-- Jacob Wasserman
German Author (1873-1934)
Agenda is an inherent desire to attain balance.
8:30 “Mean Max” & Descartes’ Error: Why All Social & Behavioral Problems
Have a Biological Basis
9:00 Social cognition: What it is and why it matters
9:30 Emotion and its self-regulation
10:15 Emotion and its self-regulation (Continued)
11:00 The biological bases of fear
12:30 Strategies 1: Concrete implications for prevention and classroom management
(emphasis on the teaching of social-emotional literacy)
2:20 Strategies 2: Skill-building and collaborative teacher-student problem-solving
3:00 Case study discussions and Q & A
Bwa is an inherent desire to attain balance. ha hahaha!!
My bad . .
And . .
His teacher’s admission: “I know it’s wrong and I’m kind of embarrassed I do this, but that’s what the other kids call him sometimes because he’s so aggressive and in your face - it’s hard not to view him as evil.”
All social/behavioral problems are a product of both . . is an inherent desire to attain balance.
Fact: All learning, is an inherent desire to attain balance.including learned behavior, is a function of . .
Key Points: is an inherent desire to attain balance.
Sorry – I’d take it back, but, well, I’m dead.
Genetic is an inherent desire to attain balance.
Bottom line: All behavior problems have a neurological basis, just as all learning problems have a neurological basis!
Your Turn . . . is an inherent desire to attain balance.
What it is
Why it matters
We tend to get stuck here!
SCT maintains that a person’s reality and social/behavioral presentation are formed through the interaction of environment and his/her cognitions.
SLT also emphasizes the importance of observational learning; that is, learning by watching the behavior modeled by others. Mirror Neurons enable this!!
When kids are little, their behavior is highly regulated by adults, who teach directly (“Do this”) and indirectly (via modeling)
As kids get older, they increasingly substitute self-redirected internal controls for adult-directed external controls.
In order for this substitution of internal control for the external control to be successful, kids must possess developmentally appropriate levels of self-regulatory ability!
Our Focus Today! learning; that is, learning by watching the behavior
To produce problems here!!
Combines with challenges/limitations here . .
Developmental weakness here . .
And . .
‘Affective Information Processing’
The BRAIN: Its two hemispheres and four lobes learning; that is, learning by watching the behavior (source: Jacob L. Driesen, Ph.D.)
Left and Right Hemispheres and Emotion learning; that is, learning by watching the behavior
Hale & Fiorello, 2005
Associated more with positive affect
Left frontal area associated with approach behavior (and positive affect)
Associated more with negative affect
Right frontal area linked with avoidant and withdrawn behavior (and negative affect)
If the left hemisphere is underactive or dysfunctional, then negative affect and avoidance behaviors may occur. If the right hemisphere is underactive, then positive affect and approach behaviors may occur.
Right hemisphere lesions more associated with laughter, euphoria, or indifference
Hale & Fiorello, 2005
Block 3 (Frontal Lobe):
Formation of intentions, and
direction of cognition &
Block 2 (Three posterior cortical lobes): Analyze, code, and store information
Block 1 (Brainstem /reticular activating system): Regulates the energy level and tone of the cortex, providing it with a stable basis for the organization of its various processes.
27 learning; that is, learning by watching the behavior
Frontal-reticular-posterior cortical attention loop learning; that is, learning by watching the behavior
(Goldberg, 2001, p. 172)
Breakdowns anywhere along this loop can lead to attention deficits and emotional/behavioral challenges!
Under-arousal: Associated with extroversion, & ADHD Conduct Disorder
Over-Arousal: Associated with introversion and internalizing disorders (i.e., anxiety and depression)
Hale & Fiorello, 2005
Four Cortical Lobes of the Brain learning; that is, learning by watching the behavior
Frontal Lobe: Output center, director of cognition and motor activity
Center of somatosensory and spatial processing
Occipital Lobe: Center of visual processing
Temporal Lobe: Center of auditory and language processing
Pre-Frontal Cortex: Primary Site of learning; that is, learning by watching the behavior
Attention and Executive Function
Not fully developed
until the age of
21 – 25!
Vulnerable to injury!
A deficiency of the neurotransmitter Dopamine in frontal cortical areas has been linked to the expression of ADHD/EFD symptoms.
You wanna piece of me?!
Phineas Gage - Harlow (1868) ”He is fitful, irreverent, indulging at times in the grossest profanity, impatient of restraint or advice when it conflicts with his desires; at times pertinaciously obstinate yet capricious and vacillating. His friends and acquaintances said he was no longer Gage.”
I lost a piece of me . .
Oppositional Defiant Disorder (because of their low frustration tolerance and tendency to become easily irritated/annoyed)
An array of executive functioning problems
Time for a break . . prefrontal cortex or its connections are often identified with . . .
It’s #$%$# about time!
Figure 1.1: prefrontal cortex or its connections are often identified with . . .The Two Strands of Executive Function
The Executive Skills
Amen, 2000, as cited by Leonard-Zabel & Feifer, 2009
Heavily involved in emotional regulation.
Serves as our cognitive shifter (associated with cognitive flexibility)
Shifts attention between internal and external stimuli.
An essential connection point between the prefrontal cortex and the emotion origin centers
Helps kids shift among problem –solving options!!
Elizabeth, a fourth grader, has been looking forward to her best friend Megan’s pool party for weeks. Upon arriving at the party, she learns that Megan’s cousin, Stacy, will also be attending. Elizabeth has a strong dislike for Stacy, finding her in past encounters to be a bossy know-it-all who hogs all of Megan’s attention. Although disappointed that her time at the party won’t be quite as she expected, Elizabeth quickly decides to spend more time with other friends as opposed to challenging Stacy for Megan’s attention. Her private thoughts about this plan include, “I’ll swim with Carol and Heidi the most, and will try and spend time with Megan when Stacy’s doing other stuff.”
AKA: ‘Response Inhibition’ prefrontal cortex or its connections are often identified with . . .
Picture a ‘rudderless ship’
‘Prepotent’ responses are not inhibited
‘Low road’ problem-solving (Goleman, 2006)
The cognitive workspace in which social situations are analyzed
This is also the cognitive workspace in which rationale social problem solving occurs
In other words, where the ‘thinking’ part of ‘stop and think’ occurs!!Impact of specific EF’s on behavior (Part I)
This EF skill determines a kids’ ability to act strategically in social contexts
The planning part of social problem is impacted by this skill, as well as the ability to act on the plan (and change it on the fly as needed)
Life is about change
Kids with ‘balky cognitive shifters’ tend to struggle greatly with transitions
And with changes in routine
And with disappointments!!Impact of specific EF’s on behavior (Part II)
Lack of frontal lobe filtering leads to:
All contribute to rejection by peers
going on here?
Be afraid – be very afraid . .
Cortical Pathway (cognitive connections with the amygdala)
Thalamic Pathway (lower order connections with the amygdala)
Thalamic pathway: Shoot first and ask questions later.
Cortical pathway: Stop and think before reacting.
Low Road Processing
initiated by the amygdala)
High Road Processing (rational, controlled, directed by the PFC)
Like any skilled air traffic controller, the thalamus can quickly react to potential threat. In that case, it bypasses the cortex -- the thinking brain -- and the signal goes straight to the amygdala. The amygdala can only react based on previously stored patterns.
--- Joshua Freedman
Or . .
In an nutshell, EFD kids become easily swamped by their emotions
Kaufman: It’s also helpful to think of these kids as
manifesting a clear mismatch in power between a very strong emotion-generation center of the brain and less developed emotion regulation centers.
Part 4 ‘cognitive wheelchair.’
The Neurobiology of Anxiety
By jove, I think
I’ve got it!!!
Implicit emotional learning
(AKA: fearing conditioning)
Explicit emotional learning
(Learning fear from others)
High amygdala reactivity: A need for minimal stimulation of the amygdala to activate the cerebral cortex. Often associated with anxiety disorders in kids!
Low amygdala reactivity: A need for greater stimulation and excitement to trigger the amygdala. Tends to be associated outgoing, disinhibited (‘stim –seeking’) behavior.
Think too much (overactive/over-aroused prefrontal cortex)
Are hypervigilent and overly sensitive to environmental triggering of the amygdala.
Neuron (Brain Cell)
Neurotransmitters and Emotional Functioning ‘cognitive wheelchair.’
Like Dopamine, it fosters nand energy (also associated with motivation and drive)
Promotes feelings of calm, emotional stability, and sleep.
Promotes alertness, focus, and feelings of pleasure and reinforcement
Helps induce relaxation and sleep. May balance excitement and inhibition.
Neurotransmitter Reuptake and ‘cognitive wheelchair.’
Selective Reuptake Inhibition
LUNCH TIME!!! ‘cognitive wheelchair.’
Social/emotional skills are just that – SKILLS.
They are skills that exist on a bell-shaped curve, just like academic and cognitive skills.
They are skills that can be accommodated to and taught to.
Just as kids enter school every day with varying amounts of academic and cognitive skill, they enter school with greater and lesser amounts of social/emotional skill.
It is essential to remember that the vast majority of kids with significant social/emotional/behavioral challenges have social learning disabilities!!
80% of office referrals come from 11% of teachers . . .
True ‘dat …
Kids with substantial social/emotional regulation deficits do far better in some teacher’s classes than in others.
Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) is a process for creating school environments that are more predictable and effective for achieving academic and social goals. For some schools, PBIS will enhance their current systems and practices, for others it will radically change the culture for the better.
A key strategy of the PBIS process is prevention. The majority of students follow the school’s expectations, but are never acknowledged for their positive behavior. Through instruction, comprehension and regular practice, all stakeholders use a consistent set of behavior expectations and rules. When some students do not respond to teaching of the behavioral rules, PBIS schools view it as an opportunity for re-teaching, not just punishment.
They increase the availability of dopamine in the central nervous system (by inhibiting the dopamine transporter – increasing the the time that dopamine has to bind to its receptors on other neurons)
They increase the receptivity of inhibitory receptor sites on neurotransmitters
In so doing, they chemically ‘ramp up the wattage’ in the pre-frontal cortex
Numerous studies have shown academic success to be strongly associated with several dimensions of emotional intelligence.
“Recent studies have revealed that an average student enrolled in a social and emotional learning program ranks at least ten percentile points higher on achievement tests than students who do not participate in such programs. ”
— T. Shriver and R. Weissberg, New York Times, August 16, 2005
Explicit emphasis on violence and bullying/aggression prevention and social problem-solving
Pre-K/K, Elementary, and Middle School Versions
Strong research base (now in use in 26 countries . . )
It’s use has also been correlated with academic success
Kids seem to like it a lot.
The settings in
which they must operate
‘Goodness of Fit’
(Greene & Ablon’s ‘Transactional Perspective’)
Assessment of Lagging Skills & Unsolved Problems
less kid-directed activity
Neuropsychological fact 1: When individuals engage in any act of self-control, they become depleted and have less self-control available for subsequent acts of self-regulation (Baumeister et al, 2007).
Neuropsychological fact 2: Self-regulatory systems can be ‘recharged’ by putting people in a positive mood (happiness, relaxation, etc.)
On a neurological level, it is far better to give than receive.
Some research has shown that thinking about some else’s problems lights up the same part of the brain that gets activated when we reflect on our own, while compassion registers in the brain’s pleasures zones.
And in the same way that it pays to eat broccoli several times a week, research suggests that you’ll be healthier and happier after offering up regular servings of compassion. Some studies suggest that five acts of altruism a week can substantially improve mood.
IMPLICATIONS FOR TEACHERS AND SCHOOL-BASED CLINICIANS?
School staff uses their own emotions to control those of the kids around them (remember: mirror neurons).
Classic cognitive distortions
I’ll think about that tomorrow . .
Teachers can and should explicitly teach this!!
Modeling and having kids practice the power of . .
Before demystification: Why does everybody hate me all the time?
Why do I freak out so easily and piss everyone off?
After demystification: You mean I’m not a horrible jerk? I just get angrier easier than other kids, and need to learn to control this better?
Teacher should model via role play and ‘think alouds’ how to . .
Cope with the annoying behavior of others
Cope with/set aside bothersome thoughts
Cope with/set aside self-defeating emotions
Arnold Goldstein, Ph.D.
Z – Zip Your mouthStop and take a deep breath!
I – Identify the problemWhat do I need? What’s the problem?
P – PauseTake a moment to calm down before doing anything!
P – Put yourself in chargeTake control of my actions
E – Explore choicesWhat could I do? (E.g., walk away, change the subject, take a deep breath, ask an adult for help, etc.)
R – ResetPick an option
Bad thing happens to kid . .
The CHOICE ZONE
Choice made things bad to better?
Choice made things bad to worse?
Focus first and intensely on just getting them to stop and either walk away or get help.
What do you want?
Behavior Management Strategies for Kids with SR Weakness Management Issues
Surrogate frontal lobe: Management Issues
Teacher coaching at the start of the day and then, as necessary, throughout the day, can have profound impact on student’s behavioral presentation.
97 Management Issues
Picking academic and social ‘battles’ very carefully
Teacher: John, I know you’re tired from the field trip and bus ride, but the school day isn’t over for another hour and you’ve got to write at least one paragraph on your field trip reflection sheet.
John: What?Forget it – I’m not doing it! Just give me a zero.
Teacher: Then I guess your choosing to stay with me after school today until you get it done. I’m not fooling around with this.
John:$%$#@ it! I don’t care!
Mentor (a school social worker, pulling 10 year old Adam aside just before he enters the cafeteria): Okay, buddy, before you go in, let’s just quickly touch base on what you’re going to work on in the cafeteria and at recess today.
Adam (rolling his eyes and sighing heavily): I know, I know. I’m really going to try and eat neatly today, not talk with my mouth open and grossing the other kids out with my food and stuff, and at recess I’m going to stay really cool during four-square.
Mentor: And what have we talked about ‘cool’ meaning for you?
Adam: Cool means not changing the rules and just accepting it when I get out and not getting all mad at the other kids. I know! Can I just go in and eat now?! I’m really hungry.
Mentor: Yes, go and enjoy, and don’t forget that I’ll be watching for a while today while you’re eating and playing. Oh, and I’m really proud of how well you’ve been doing. No office referrals in two weeks. You rock.
Kids with EF deficits can’t change all problem behaviors at once.
If calling out is a major problem, than focus on hand raising first, targeting the most problematic time of the day. Than add other times/settings as the student is successful.
Let’s return to the case of . . .