Educational Psychology Essay

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psychologists, especially Freudians, considered experiences undergone at the tender, early childhood age to be crucial to social, psychological and mental growth. Newer studies reveal that even late-childhood experiences are influential, capable of altering a child's developmental course. A majority of contemporary psychologists discuss sensitive, rather than critical, phases, which are phases when an individual is found to be particularly reactive towards or equipped to handle particular experiences. Hence, while childhood is deemed to be the ideal age to independently learn any second language (i.e., without direct teaching on others' part), adults also can and have effectively learnt second languages (Woolfolk & Margetts, 2012).

Different Individuals' Development Occurs at Different Paces

Within classroom settings, one can witness several examples demonstrating varied developmental rates of pupils. While some pupils will be better, faster, organized or more responsible and conscientious with regard to their social relationships and attitudes, others may be relatively slower to develop in the same aspects. With the exception of some uncommon instances where pupils exhibit extremely sluggish or extremely swift growth, these disparities are common and educators ought to expect it in a class (Woolfolk & Margetts, 2012).

Development Is a Fairly Orderly Process

Individuals develop their skills logically. In their babyhood, they first sit, then stand and then walk, babble prior to talking coherently, and perceive their surroundings using an individual, independent perspective prior to imagining and knowing others' perspectives. At school, they first learn Paul Jennings and then Shakespeare, addition prior to algebra, etc. While theoreticians might not be in complete agreement regarding the precise order of how things must be learnt, they, apparently, do find a fairly rational progression (Woolfolk & Margetts, 2012).

Development Is a Gradual Process

Change seldom takes place instantly. While pupils unable to write with a crayon or resolve hypothetical situations can well acquire these skills, they usually take some time (Woolfolk & Margetts, 2012).

One can view the growth of an association between behavioral issues and language disorders as a phase-wise process. The foremost phase entails a preschool-level lag in language acquisition linked to attention issues. The middle childhood phase sees reading-disabled pupils and pupils having a language lag history depicting more internalization issues compared to normally-developing pupils. Teenage, which is a stage linked to a typical rise of risk-taking activities, depicts an association between externalization issues and unremediated reading disorders (Perkins & Bermann, 2013). Communication failure is believed to be one source of language disorders resulting in problematic behavior. Kids showing poor language proficiency will be more prone to struggling with turn taking and other pragmatic language elements that can hinder their social growth and routine conversations with educators and fellow students.
According to Stevenson (1996), such communication can frustrate language-impaired pupils and give rise to internalizing as well as externalizing. Sociocognitive deficiencies have also been associated with language impairment. Language-impaired pupils might display lower self-esteem, and may thus be vulnerable to displaying antisocial behaviors. Such students are proven to possess a narrower grasp of emotions within social contexts (Perkins & Bermann, 2013).

Among the more consistent developmental psychology research outcomes is the fact that behavioral issues and other kinds of psychopathology display comorbidity with cognitive deficiencies, language-, reading- and other learning- disorders and failure at school. Authors of a latest study have discovered a bidirectional link between symptoms undermining school functioning and functioning failures furthering symptoms (Kim & Cicchetti, 2009; Masten et al., 2005). Another research revealed the association of parental distress and language impairment to misbehavior as well as aggressiveness (Brownlie et al., 2004). A third research proved that youngsters struggling with language deficits displayed higher aggressiveness, anxiety and depression rates (Mcgillivray & Baker, 2008; Kim & Cicchetti, 2009).

Providing Understandable Input

The provision of understandable input proves crucial for pupils' acquisition of disciplinary knowledge and development of language skills. Educators may take a number of actions for ensuring students better understand their input (Ashcraft, 2006). Firstly, educators must know their personal speech patterns and attempt at reducing "fillers" (phrases/words like "you know", "uh", etc.), use short, succinct sentences, avoid using idioms, take frequent pauses in sentences, sum up the major concepts at the end of the lesson, and restate concepts in a different way. The aim is more to explain ideas using language than to make lessons simpler (Echevarria et al., 2004).

The utilization of visual aids is a second means to ensure pupils better understand educators' content input and language. Such aids prove beneficial in offering a context to aid pupils in comprehending the theoretical or linguistic input. Visual aids include multimedia/whiteboard notes, images, graphs, illustrations, charts, etc. which facilitate comprehension of subject matter (Echevarria et al., 2004). Educators commonly utilize boards to scribble certain phrases and words as concepts come to their minds in the course of lessons. But they need to be careful with regard to the handwriting they use. English-as-Second-Language pupils, particularly pupils whose first languages have an entirely different writing system such as Arabic, might be uncomfortable with new to cursive English script. Hence, reading cursive words, spelling them properly and jotting them down into their notebooks might prove difficult. If such pupils are….....

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Ashcraft, N. (2006). Overcoming Language Barriers in Content-Area Instruction. Learning and Teaching in Higher Education: Gulf Perspectives.

Brownlie E, Beitchman J, Escobar M, Young A, Atkinson L, Johnson C, et al. (2004). Early language impairment and young adult delinquent and aggressive behavior. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology. 32(4):453 -- 67. [PubMed]

Echevarria, J., Vogt, M., & Short, D. J. (2004). Making content comprehensible for English learners: The SIOP model (2nded.). New York: Pearson Education.

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Kim J, Cicchetti D. (2009). Longitudinal pathways linking child maltreatment, emotion regulation, peer relations, and psychopathology. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 51(6):706 -- 716. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Masten A, Roisman G, Long J, Burt K, Obradovic J, Riley J, et al. (2005). Developmental cascades: linking academic achievement and externalizing and internalizing symptoms over 20 years. Developmental Psychology. 41(5):733 -- 46. [PubMed]

McGillivray J, Baker K. (2008). Effects of comorbid ADHD with learning disabilities on anxiety, depression, and aggression in adults. Journal of Attention Disorders. 12(6):525 -- 531. [PubMed]

Nucci, L. (1989). Challenging conventional wisdom about morality: The domain approach to values education. In L. Nucci (Ed.), Moral development and character education: A dialogue (183-203). Berkley, CA: McCutchan.

Perkins, S., & Bermann, S. G. (2013). Violence Exposure and the Development of School-Related Functioning: Mental Health, Neurocognition, and Learning. Aggress Violent Behav., 89 -- 98.

Rahiem, M., Abdullah, N., & Rahim, H. (2012). School Culture and the Moral Development of Children. IPEDR, 116.

Shumaker, D.V. & Heckel, R.V. (2007). Kids of Character: A Guide to Promoting Moral Development, Praeger Publisher.

Stevenson J. (1996). Developmental changes in the mechanisms linking language disabilities and behavior disorders. In: Beitchman JH, Cohen NJ, Konstantareas MM, Tannock R, editors. Language, Learning, and Behavior Disorders: Developmental, Biological, and Clinical Perspectives. New York, NY, US: Cambridge University Press; pp. xv -- 582

Woolfolk, A., & Margetts, K. (2012). Educational Psychology Australian Edition. Pearson Higher Education AU.

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