chapter 10 physical development in middle childhood l.
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Chapter 10: Physical Development in Middle Childhood. Physical Growth. Rate of growth slows relative to infancy & early childhood Rate is roughly 2-3 inches in height and 5 lbs per year As girls approach 8-9 years, the rate of growth increases relative to boys

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physical growth
Physical Growth
  • Rate of growth slows relative to infancy & early childhood
  • Rate is roughly 2-3 inches in height and 5 lbs per year
  • As girls approach 8-9 years, the rate of growth increases relative to boys
  • Girls begin to develop additional fat cells relative to muscle cells
  • Girls’ growth rate is faster than boys’ until roughly 13 year—possibly linked with puberty
overweight children
Overweight Children
  • BMI at or above the 95th percentile of the population of same aged children (normative)
  • Over 25 percent of American children suffer from obesity,
    • a greater-than-20-percent increase over average body weight, based on the child’s age, sex, and physical build.
  • Over 80 percent of obese youngsters remain overweight as adults
causes of obesity
Causes of Obesity
  • Obese children tend to have obese parents, and concordance for obesity is greater in identical than fraternal twins
  • Low-SES youngsters in industrialized nations are more likely to be overweight
    • lack of knowledge about healthy diet
    • tendency to buy high-fat, low-cost foods
    • family stress
  • Parental feeding practices contribute to childhood obesity
causes of obesity5
Causes of Obesity
  • obese children are more responsive to external stimuli associated with food
  • less responsive to internal hunger cues
  • Obese children are less physically active than their normal-weight peers
  • obese children tend to watch more television
    • Linked to sedentary lifestyle
    • Linked to advertising and models portrayed
outcomes of obesity
Outcomes of Obesity
  • Socio-cultural--Both children and adults rate obese youngsters as unlikable
  • By middle childhood,
    • obese children report feeling more depressed
    • display more behavior problems than normal-weight age mates
    • psychological consequences of obesity combined with continuing discrimination result in real or perceived reduced life chances
growth and maturation of the brain
Growth and Maturation of the Brain
  • The rapid decline in processing time over middle childhood is thought to be due to
    • myelinization
    • synaptic pruning
  • Growth spurts during middle childhood:
    • Frontal,
    • Temporal,
    • Occipital
    • Parietal, (Pribram, 1990)
growth and maturation of the brain8
Growth and Maturation of the Brain
  • Increased function related to
    • micro-developmental (myelinization and synaptic pruning) and
    • macro-development (development of various lobes)
  • Lateralization (isolation of functions to one or the other hemisphere of the brain) increases and further reduces plasticity
  • Elaborations (development of new connections in the brain) are contingent on brain maturation and experience
  • Synaptic connections transverse increasingly longer distances across the brain and are correlated with increased flexibility of thought
growth and maturation of the brain9
Growth and Maturation of the Brain
  • Brain growth spurts roughly correspond to Piaget’s observed sequence of cognitive development
  • By the end of middle childhood the mass of the brain closely matches that of the adult brain
  • The later in childhood a neurological trauma occurs, the more challenging the recovery and the relocalization of the functions in the brain due to a decrease in plasticity
motor development
Motor Development
  • Gross Motor Development
    • During middle childhood, running, jumping, hopping, and ball skills become more refined.
    • Motor skills improve in the capacities of flexibility, balance, agility, and force.
    • Steady improvements also occur in reaction time—11-year-olds can respond almost twice as quickly to a stimulus as 5-year-olds.
motor development11
Motor Development
  • Fine Motor Development
    • Fine motor development also improves steadily over the school years.
    • Gains are especially evident in writing and drawing.
      • Writing tends to be large at first, and legibility gradually increases.
      • Drawings show gains in organization, detail, and representation of depth.
      • School-age children not only depict objects in considerable detail, they also relate them to one another as part of an organized whole.
individual and group differences in motor development
Individual and Group Differences in Motor Development
  • Parents who encourage physical exercise tend to have youngsters who enjoy it more and who are also more skilled.
  • Family income affects children’s opportunities to develop a variety of physical abilities.
  • Girls remain ahead in the fine motor area and skills which depend on balance and agility.
  • School-age boys’ genetic advantage in muscle mass is not great enough to account for their superiority in many gross motor skills; thus, environment plays a large role in motor development.
  • Greater emphasis on skill training for girls along with increased attention to their athletic achievements in schools and communities is likely to increase their involvement.
childhood play and games
Childhood Play and Games
  • Child-Organized Games
    • Organized games with rules become common in middle childhood.
    • Gains in perspective taking allow children to understand the roles of several players in a game and permit the transition to rule-oriented games.
    • Participation in organized games helps children form more mature concepts of fairness and justice.
adult organized youth sports
Adult-Organized Youth Sports
  • The past several decades have witnessed an expansion of youth sports programs.
  • Some researchers worry that adult-structured athletics are robbing children of crucial learning experiences and endangering their development.
  • Children who join teams so early that the skills demanded are beyond their capabilities soon loose interest and drop out.
  • Parents powerfully influence children’s athletic attitudes and capabilities.
  • When coaches emphasize effort, improvement, participation, and teamwork, young athletes enjoy their experience more, like their coach and teammates more, and gain in self-esteem
play shadows of our evolutionary past
Play: Shadows of Our Evolutionary Past
  • Rough-and-tumble play
    • Friendly wrestling, rolling, hitting, and chasing among children
    • School-age youngsters are quite good at telling the difference between playful wrestling and a true aggressive attack
    • Girls’ rough-and-tumble play consists largely of running and chasing
    • Boys engage in more playful wrestling and hitting
play shadows of our evolutionary past16
Play: Shadows of Our Evolutionary Past
  • Dominance hierarchy
    • stable ordering of individuals
    • predicts who will win when conflict arises between group members
    • serves the adaptive function of limiting aggression among group members
physical education the context of school
Physical Education: The Context of School
  • provide regularly scheduled opportunities for exercise and play
    • ensure that all children have access to physical activity that supports:
      • healthy bodies.
      • a sense of self-worth as physically active and capable beings.
      • the cognitive and social skills necessary for getting along well with others.
physical education the context of school18
Physical Education: The Context of School
  • The average school-age child gets only 20 minutes of physical education a week Florida has recently increased this for elementary students.
  • The growing fitness movement among adults has not filtered down to children
  • Emphasizing informal games and individual exercise—pursuits that are most likely to last into later years.
  • Physically fit children become more active adults who reap many benefits.
special needs in middle childhood
Special Needs in Middle Childhood
  • Biopsychosocial forces tend to create transactions among forces in children’s lives that lead to psychopathology
  • Determining exact causes of psychopathology among children is difficult due to:
    • Range of possible causal factors
    • Comorbidity (presence of two or more disorders)
  • Relative to the norm for age mates:
    • Inability to sustain attention
    • High levels of activity
    • Low impulse control
  • Prevalence rate of ADHD 4%-6% meet clinical definition
  • Genetic, neurological components involved
  • Environmental toxins also implicated (lead exposure, prenatal exposure to alcohol and tobacco)
        • Treatments of choice typically involve drugs (stimulant) & behavioral management
communicative and learning disorders
Communicative and Learning disorders
  • Communicative disorders
    • Articulation—physiological differences; can be treated by speech therapists/pathologists
    • Expressive/receptive communication (linked to autistic spectrum disorders)
    • Expressive language disorder linked to early ear infections
    • Stuttering—frequently declines across childhood; can be associated with stress in later years
communicative and learning disorders22
Communicative and Learning disorders
  • Learning Disorders
    • Specific learning disorder—narrowly defined to domain (e.g. reading, math, writing)
    • Child possesses intelligence at or above normal level
    • Differences in brain activity with children with communicative and learning disorders linked to differences in information processing
    • Discriminating between environmental and biological factors is difficult
autism spectrum disorders
Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Lower than average:
    • Communication - both verbal (spoken) and non-verbal (such as pointing, eye contact, and smiling)
    • Social - sharing emotions, understanding how others think and feel, and holding a conversation
  • Routines or repetitive behaviors (stereotyped behaviors) -
    • repeating words or actions,
    • obsessively following routines or schedules, and
    • playing in repetitive ways
autism spectrum disorders24
Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Usually seen as early as 18 months
  • Range of indicators
    • Does not smile in response to others’ smiles
    • Engages in repetitive rapid motor behaviors (ex. hand flapping)
    • Does not point at objects
    • Does not wave or say “bye-bye”
    • Overly active, uncooperative, resistant
    • Shows unusual attachments to object
education for special needs children
Education for Special Needs Children
  • IEP (Santa Rosa County’s IST)
  • Least Restrictive Environment
    • Resource room
    • Inclusion
    • Mainstreaming
    • Intact classroom
    • Resource teacher