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The nature and nurture debate Essay

Development in children:

At meantime, “Nurture” refers to the environment that we are surrounded by. We also have evidence shown a significant impact on the influence to a child from its parents or other family members. For instance, a child who is grow up in an emotional sensitivity family is more likely to accept the same values than who was grow up in a suppress family environment. For all these reasons, we cannot disaffirm that nurture also play an important role in human’s emotional development. Children need to be nurtured: they need love and support from parents, siblings, extended family, teachers, peers, and other people important in their lives. Children can be greatly affected by how these important people nurture them. Other elements of nurture include a child’s economic and sociocultural environments.

Poverty, malnutrition, and a lack of adequate medical care can alter a child’s developmental path. Cultural heritage and diversity can enrich a child’s life, and the neighbourhood where the child lives can determine the schools and peer groups that a child will have.Nature relates to biological and chemical properties of the human being. Sometimes, the short of or high levels of some specific hormone can markedly affect our emotional development. For instance, we have lots of studies shown that a high level of testosterone can let someone’s character become more courageous and aggressive, where else extreme amounts of estrogen will lead to a sensitivity and emotional character.

All of these are an approach to nature affect the development of emotion. Relationships are the way babies come to know the world and their place in it. They provide the loving context necessary to comfort, protect, encourage, and offer a buffer against stressful times. It is through relationships that young children develop social emotional wellness, which includes the ability to form satisfying relationships with others, play, communicate, learn, face challenges, and experience emotions. In addition, nurturing relationships are crucial for the development of trust, empathy, compassion, generosity, and conscience.

Parents are the keys to intellectual development for almost all children in the care and education they provide and arrange. “Many research studies underscore the links between parental involvement and young children’s intelligence” (nature vs. nurture, 19/11/2014). By the time a child turns two, many of the intellectual foundations will have been laid to support a lifetime of learning. A child’s intelligence is being shaped, challenged, and expressed every day by experiences with people, objects, and events, especially when they are an active participant. These experiences are the raw ingredients of intelligence. In traditional society most parents encourage their kids to take part in extracurricular activities like learning music, dance or sports in accordance with the child’s talents and interests. The talents have been given by nature but they can only be developed into skills through the hard work of nurture. Development in adulthood:

Their development is affected to make social skills as well as meet new people to socialize with this will affect them later on in life, getting into relationships as well as socializing with individuals at work places etc. Nurture Effects Physical development there are several of physical effects of nurture on adolescence. A number of them tend to follow their friends for instance, if they see their friends taking drugs they get influenced and end up doing the same. The physical effects of drugs, smoking, alcohol etc. are; respiratory diseases, cardiovascular diseases, coronary heart diseases, dry skin etc. Intellectual development a consequence on adolescence through nature reduces their thinking level.

Their capability to reflect logically reduces. Smoking as well as drinking throughout adolescent years does tend to have an effect on the brain which does affect their understanding enormously. For instance, smoking decreases mental ability as oxygen supply also decreases. Therefore they do also tend to have lack of concentration this is caused by their attention span it goes lower and all this is caused by smoking. Some smokers that are addicted to the substances end up having a slow brain and this affects their thinking, speech as well as communication speed, as the brain is still developing at this stage smoking as well as taking other drugs can easily cause mental health issues for instance, poor decision-making skills, Environmental factors involve many dimensions.

They include both physical environments and social environments (such as the neighbourhood, media and peer pressure.) Also, environmental factors have different levels of impact on human development as they involve multiple layers of action, ranging from most immediate families, friends, and neighbourhoods) to bigger societal contexts (school systems and local governments) as well as macro factors such as politics on the international level or say global warming. These layers are also impacted by other factors outside them. Exposed to not just peer pressure from their peers but also to parental ideals, community standards or ethnic views. Nature is responsible for the growth of a person from the foetus level until development into a normal adult. The genetic makeup of a human being is responsible for their sex, skin colour, colour of their eyes and hair as well as distinguishing features which are inherited. Nature can only assist in the growth of a foetus into a normal well-developed adult who may have inherited some special talents.

Thus it can be concluded that nature uses the genetic coding to help in physical development and does impart some positive or negative traits to an individual However, it is nurture which can be utilized to improve positive traits and diminish the effect of negative traits in a child.” Several recent studies carried out on infant and child behaviour have shown that there is significant evidence to support the fact that nurture strongly influences human development especially in the early years.”(how does nature and nurture influence human development, 19/11/2014) “Young adults score higher on tests of fluid intelligence”(23/11/2014), which is the ability to think abstractly and deal with novel situations, while middle adults improve over time on tests of crystallized intelligence, which involves using learned information collected throughout a life span. In summary, the results of traditional IQ tests imply that intelligence continues at approximately the same level at least into middle adulthood, and probably beyond. Middle‐age adult thinking differs significantly from that of adolescents and young adults.

Adults are typically more focused in specific directions, having gained insight and understanding from life events that adolescents and young adults have not yet experienced. No longer viewing the world from an absolute and fixed perspective, middle adults have learned how to make compromises, question the establishment, and work through disputes. Younger people, on the hand, may still look for definitive answers. Many middle‐age adults have attained Piaget’s stage of formal operations, which is characterized by the ability to think abstractly, reason logically, and solve theoretical problems. Many of the situations facing adults today require something more than formal operations. That is, the uncertain areas of life may pose problems too ambiguous and inconsistent for such straightforward thinking styles. Instead, middle adults may develop and employ post formal thinking, which is characterized by the objective use of practical common sense to deal with unclear problems.

An example of post formal thinking is the middle adult who knows from experience how to manoeuvre through rules and regulations and play the system at the office. Another example is the middle adult who accepts the reality of contradictions in his or her religion, as opposed to the adolescent who expects a concrete truth in an infallible set of religious doctrines and rules. Post formal thinking begins late in adolescence and culminates in the practical wisdom so often associated with older adulthood. “Scholars have long studied twins to address the nature nurture question. Identical twins separated at birth and brought up in separate environments provide the ideal test cases, but such cases are exceedingly difficult to find”(traditional twin studies,2014). Instead, most researchers study twins who have grown up together and carefully compare the experiences of identical twins to those of fraternal twins. Since identical twins are monozygotic, developed from a single sperm fertilizing a single egg, which then divides into two separate cell masses within the first two weeks of development, these twins are essentially clones.

Fraternal twins, on the other hand, are dizygotic, developed when two eggs are each separately fertilized by different sperm. Identical twins fraternal twins have, on average, half their genes in common, as do any two full siblings. Comparing identical and fraternal twins enables researchers to separate genetic from environmental influences without measuring genes directly. If a physical or behavioural trait, like hair colour or success at math, is shared more often by identical twins than by fraternal twins, researchers reason, genes must have played a role in developing the trait. Twin and related studies provide most of the evidence that Genes determine human traits and behaviours.

For example, schizophrenia runs in families. Twin studies show that when one twin in an identical pair suffers from schizophrenia, the chance that the other twin will be schizophrenic is about one in two; it is only one in six for fraternal twins. This gap is evidence for the existence of a genetic tendency toward schizophrenia. Similar evidence suggests that genes influence such traits and behaviours as height, weight, manic-depressive psychosis, alcoholism, and cognitive development, reading skills, parenting style, rate of accident occurrence in childhood, television-viewing habits, peer-group selection, and timing of first sexual intercourse, marital disruption, and educational and economic attainment.

Traditional twin study designs rely on two assumptions, both of which have prompted criticism. First, the equal environments assumption states that the environments of identical twins are no more similar than the environments of fraternal twins. However, if the experiences of identical twins are more similar, genetic influences would be overestimated. Critics note that identical twins tend to be treated more alike than fraternal twins and suspect that this greater environmental Similarity may explain the greater trait similarity of identical twins. For example, identical twins are probably more often dressed alike than fraternal twins. If being treated identically, in dressing for instance, makes identical twins more similar than fraternal twins, we could mistakenly attribute effects to genes that are really due to differences in treatment.

Maturation theory:

“Basically, this theory maintains that children mature as they grow older and personalities and temperament will be reveals with little influence from the surrounding environment” (children’s medical services,(23/11/2014) . Through his research, Arnold Gesell developed some of the first milestones that children should meet. These milestones are called the Gesell developmental schedules. This was the beginning on the idea that children development happens in stages. The Gesell developmental schedule was able to compare a children’s development to the standard norm. The norm was established through extensive studies of children. The schedule is supposed to be able to give a measure of possible intelligence. Children who how early development were likely to have high intelligence according to schedule.

The schedule has fallen out of favour in regards to studying intelligence over the years. There is not enough proof to show that the schedules accurately measure intelligence over the years. The scale is used to this day to measure an infant’s intellectual development in which the infant may have developmental issues. The Arnolds Gesell theory of a child development also has roots in the study of evolution of genetics. Arnold Gesell believed that child development was mostly biological, not environmental.

According to Gesell, a stable environment is important to a child, but only so that they can develop naturally according to their genetics. This idea that children develop only according to their biology is called the Gesell maturational theory. According to Gesell’s maturation theory, a child or teenager will develop only according to what they have programmed in their genetics. A stable, nurturing environment helps this along by encouraging growth, much as fertile soil helps a plant grow and develop.

References:
Nature vs. nurture,(19/11/2014) How much influence do you have on your baby’s intelligence, available at: http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=1044 (accessed: 19/11/2014) How nature and nurture influence human development,(19/11/14) the ongoing debate, available at : http://www.brighthub.com/science/genetics/articles/110288.aspx (accessed:19/11/14) Traditional twin studies, (21,11,2014) twin studies ,what can they tell us about nature/nurture? Available at: http://www.unc.edu/~gguo/papers/05%20twin%20studies%20Contexts.pdf (accessed:23/11/2014) Intellectual development : age 45-65, (14/11/2014) available at: http://www.cliffsnotes.com/sciences/psychology/development-psychology/physical-cognitive-development-4565/intellectual-development-age-4565 (accessed : 23/11/2014)


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