November 28, 2022


Cultural Influences on Child Development

This article delves into how a child processes the information around them. There are three main ways being classical conditioning, operant conditioning, and observational learning. They give examples of each and help one to fully get to the bottom of this complex understanding. This article shows how social biases are developed. It emphasize recognizing cultural differences and how it is crucial to child development. Then talking about different careers within that as well as how one can make an impact. Culture is unique to everyone and provides a sense of who you are.

How Men and Children Affect Each Other’s Development

Kyle D Pruett, a Clinical Professor of Child Psychiatry, dives into the differing experiences infants face with infants might explain differences in handling, but close observations document that even men who are very experienced with children handle them differently from women. They say that there is no such thing as a fatherless child.They look into the transition from a male to a father. They also touch on the positive effects of the male involvement on children’s development. Delving to various stereotypes and expectations. I like this article because they talk about the affects on the children and the father, not just one or the other.

Child Marriage: A Human Rights Violation

Child marriage is a formal marriage or informal union where one or both of the parties are under the age of 18. Each year 12 million girls are married before the age of 19. It truly is a global issue that cuts across countries, cultures, religions, and ethnicities. However, child marriage is much more prevalent in third world countries where poverty is common. Due to this, health is a striking issue in regards to child brides.

I created this presentation in hopes to spread awareness of this issue. Child marriage is deeply-rooted in cultures and social norms due to the ignorance of the results. Therefore, spreading awareness would inform others about the devastating consequences of child marriage and I would hope it would gradually end the practice so it would be very much appreciated if you checked out my blog:

How do siblings affect your personality?

There are traits that are characteristic of first born children, which differ from middle children and the youngest. These changing personalities are a result of different parenting methods and styles for each child, and are influenced by the role of the other sibling.

I am the youngest of two; I have a sister who is three years older than me. According to this article about birth order and personality, I should be “attention-seeking, fun-loving, manipulative, and outgoing.” My sister follows the website’s tendencies, as she is both reliable and achieving. I’d like to think that I’m not manipulative and attention-seeking like the article suggests, but I am–more so than my sister.

I was curious to how I would act if I had no siblings, and according to the website, only children tend to be “diligent, mature, and conscientious.” That sounds a lot better than being the self-centered baby of the family. Therefore, I can blame my sister for my procrastination and lack of focus in school. I’m not saying that it’s accurate, but having a sibling could very well have affected how I behave, and possibly in a negative way. And the same applies for her. I doubt that these birth order-based dispostions are always accurate. However, it is proven that having no siblings can significantly change how the child acts. My sister has definitely played a large role in my childhood and development. It is not hard to believe that without her, I would be a very different person today.

What it’s like to be an only child

I am an only child. I was raised with cousins who were similar to my age so it was kind of like I had siblings but not the same. I wanted to know how a sibling affects the way a child acts and if this affects them in certain areas in their life.

The article I found tells about some studies they did in china regarding only children. In china there used to be an only child policy in order to control the population. They conducted a study on university students who were an only child. They scanned their brains while also testing their personality, creativity, and intelligence. The tests showed that only children outperformed those with siblings on creativity, but consistently scored lower on agreeable personality traits. The scans demonstrated that the parts of the brain associated with the development of these were indeed structurally different in the two.The only children who performed higher on creativity showed a higher volume of gray matter in the parietal lobe, a part of the brain associated with mental flexibility and imagination. The scans of those only children who showed less agreeable traits showed less gray matter in the medial prefrontal cortex, a part of the brain known to be involved in thinking about the self in relation to others.

The researchers claim this shows that different family environments do affect children’s structural brain development, and the kind of upbringing we have shapes the kind of people we become on a neurological basis. They point out that other studies have already shown that only children tend to exhibit more positive developmental outcomes, such as higher intelligence and creativity, often demonstrated in achievements at school. However, the sole attention of parents,  can result in personality traits such as dependency, selfishness, and social ineptitude. Only children miss out on early opportunities to develop and practice social skills, emotional support, and empathy.

Photo by Internet Archive Book Images

Photo by Internet Archive Book Images

Research for ‘The Causes of Violence in Youth’ Part 4

For my continuing research on the causes of violence in youth, I decided to look more into the theory that trauma is the root cause. Today one of the most highly debated parts in the research world of child development is the cause of  violence in youth.While researching this on the Pioneer Online Library, I found an incredibly useful article from the Chicago Catalyst, written by Sarah Karp. Tragedy’s Aftermath, gives a useful insight and statistics on the backgrounds of youth who suffer through debilitation in school and violent outbursts because of traumatic backgrounds. This quote helps to summarize the perspective of the article, “Research points to the lingering effects of trauma on children. When no one helps them to cope with the emotional aftermath, children can become angry, irritable, and aggressive in response to the stress of violence, according to the National Child Traumatic Stress Network. Traumatized children often lose the ability to concentrate, become withdrawn, or act out.”

It is my firm theory now that the root cause of violence in youth, in many cases, has relations or a background in trauma.

Child Labor in Our World

According to Mexico: Child labour and the perils of a lost education.” by Al Jazeera America, 2.5 million kids are working in Mexico and 870,000 of those kids are under the age of 13. The global number of children in child labor has declined by one third since 2000, from 246 million to 168 million children. More than half however, 85 million, are in hazardous work as quoted by the International Labour Organization . Asia and the Pacific still have the largest numbers of almost 78 million or 9.3% of child population, but Sub-Saharan Africa continues to be the region with the highest incidence of child labor (59 million, over 21%). There are 13 million (8.8%) of children in child labor in Latin America and the Caribbean and in the Middle East and North Africa there are 9.2 million (8.4%). Agriculture remains as the most important sector where child laborers are found which totals to 98 million, or 59%. Child labor is also prevalent in the United States, especially on tobacco fields in North Carolina, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Virginia as cited by Human Rights Watch. Children working in these fields are susceptible to contracting ‘Green Tobacco Sickness’ which happens when workers absorb the nicotine through their skin when handling tobacco. While the long term effects of this sickness and conditions is unknown, research on smoking suggests that the effects will deal with mood disorders, problems with memory, learning, impulse control, and attention. These in combination with pesticide exposure, can lead to reproductive health problems, cancer, neurological problems, and other issues.

Child Labor

Child labor in our world today incorporates 250 million children worldwide. Child labor occurs when “people under fifteen years of age are forced to be employed because their parents either cannot work or do not make enough money to support their families on their own” (as cited from a California State essay, ). Around 120 million of these children are working full time, a majority of 61% in Asia, 32% in Africa, and 7% in Latin America.

  • Child labor has a number of detrimental effects on children, it impairs the child both physically and mentally and inhibits the development of the child. Children are unable to go to school and are forced to work in terrible conditions ridden by disease and forces that can cause eye damage, lung disease, susceptible to arthritis as they grow older, and stunted growth. As consumers, we need to work to abolish labor and let children be children.

Child Development and Behavior: Broken Homes, Hopes, and Dreams

Child development/ behavior can be affected by a number of things, but a big factor may be the parents. Depending on the severity of a broken home, the parent’s relationship with each other, as well as their children, can affect how their children behave and may even develop. This doesn’t mean that a parent’s divorce can make it so a child can never climb steps or hop on one foot, but it can make it harder for children to develop social skills and may even set back their achievements. Depending on a child’s age, the separation of their parents may cause extreme stress and, in the worst case, even depression. However, keeping the parent’s married might not be in the best interest either, depending on the family’s situation. In my experience of coming from a broken home, I have never suffered from developmental or behavioral problems. However, this may be due to my parents living in the same house after the divorce, the age I was when my parents got divorced, and also the relationship I had with both of my parents, as well as the relationship they had with each other. Parents have an impact on their children, married or not. However, on average, broken homes have a significant impact on children and may even continue throughout their life.

To understand how a broken home affects child development/ behavior, it is important to understand how children should normally develop/ behave. Although a child may behave and develop at their own rate, there are guidelines for a child’s development, as well as behavior, when it comes to their mental ability. The image above shows the developmental skills that a child should have at the given ages, many of which have to do with motor and social skills. As seen in the diagram, children need to develop things they can do to help them do simple tasks, like brushing their teeth and walking heel to toe. Developing motor skills will make a child become more independent, seeing how they will be moving and grasping things on their own. So this is a no-brainer: children need to develop motor skills. But another thing a child needs to develop, also shown by the chart, is social skills. This would include naming things and understanding words. Barbara Solomon, a social worker with a Bachelor of science degree in psychology and a Ph.D. from the University of Southern California, comments how “a lack of social abilities could signal a medical or developmental problem” (Solomon, 2004). So not only are a lack of motor skills an issue at a young age but so are social skills. Lastly, there are three types of behavior that parents should understand when it comes to their children. First, there is a behavior that is approved. This includes behavior such as being kind to other people, being understanding, and listening to others. The second type of behavior is one that is not necessarily wanted at all times but is tolerated. This behavior can be caused by the child being stressed or sick and is understood in context, and, depending on the family, different types of behavior are tolerated. The last type of behavior is one that should not be tolerated. This type can be troublesome for a child’s intellectual development and may even cause harm to the “physical, emotional, or social well-being of the child” (Normal Child Behavior, 2015). This type of behavior can also be caused by the parent, depending on how they act emotionally. Children may start to copy their parent’s behavior because of how closely they follow them for the normal emotional reactions of society. This may get troublesome, depending if the parent is aggressive and acting upon anger. In this case, when a child starts to mimic their parent, they develop the third type of behavior.

(I couldn’t copy the image because it is in a pdf and screen shots are not working at the moment, so if you’d like to see the image click here. It is the only image in the pdf.)

A study to show cognitive testing in teenagers is shown in the image above. This study was done by Anna Sanz-de-Galdeano and Daniela Vuri along with IZA, The Institute for the Study of Labor, in 2004. This was a study to see if the cognitive development of adolescents were changed based on the fact of their current family situation. This data shows the families that are intact has a higher cognitive ability than families that are not intact. However, the research that was also conducted showed the same children having lower cognitive ability before their parents got divorce. The research in this study shows that teenager’s cognitive ability will not necessarily decrease, but that does not say anything about the effect on younger children. This study concludes that in the short run, adolescents with divorced families may have a lower cognitive ability, even if they have a lower cognitive ability before their parents are divorced. In the long run, this is the same. This study is consistent with was Cherlin et al. (1995) said, as far as the timing of a parental divorce, the age that divorce occurs “(ages 7 to 11 versus ages 11 to 16) in a child’s life does not make a difference for young adult outcomes” (Sanz-de-Galdeano and Vuri, 2004). So whether a child is younger versus older when their parents divorce, that does not necessarily mean it will affect them as an adult: the child will have the same cognitive ability before divorce, as shown in this study, as well as after the divorce.

Another study suggests that a parent has a big outcome on their child’s emotional development. Being physically present may not be enough for a child, and all that matters is their parent’s emotional attachment to them (Volling cited in Moges and Weber, 2014). If the parent is not emotionally connected to their child, “the child will struggle to learn how to regulate his emotions and interact with others appropriately” (Moges and Weber, 2014). With my personal experience with divorce, my mother was physically there, but she was never emotionally there. I would say that I suffered from irregular emotions when it came to my mother. Sometimes, I would be really happy with her because she was there with me. Other times, and perhaps most of the time, I was angry with her because of how little she seemed to care about my life. Because I was so negative towards my mother’s negative attitude, it shows that this can “often [lead] to even more behavioral problems” (Moges and Weber, 2014). This is problematic when raising a child to become a well-adjusted adult because it may lead to further complications when interacting with others normally. There is no one way to raise a perfectly well-adjusted child, but parents can take a few precautions when taking care of them emotionally. It is important to give them “supportive environment, positive feedback, role models of healthy behavior and interactions, and someone to talk to about their emotional reactions to their experiences” (Morges and Weber, 2014). This will assure that the child will be alright emotionally when growing up, and not having any problems when it comes to regulating emotions and interacting with others.

A study in 1971 showed 60 divorced families along with 131 children. After five years, two-thirds of the children “were clinically depressed, were doing poorly in school, had difficulty maintaining friendships, [and] experienced chronic problems such as sleep disturbances” (Amato, 2005). As supported by the study, these children may have started acting aggressive and “engaging in bullying behavior, both of which can negatively affect peer relationships” (Green). However, another study, done in 1970, showed how after two years of their parent’s divorce, preschoolers did not show emotional and behavioral problems like they did the year before. So why does one group of children show more severe symptoms than the other group? The answer is this: research shows that the second most vulnerable group to divorce is young teenagers, represented by the group of children in the study done in 1971 (Blakeslee and Wallerstein, 2006).  The first group to be the most affected by divorce are young children before they enter school. So, in this case, preschoolers will not be as affected as much as young adolescents would. At this age, young adolescents are being nudged slightly into the world, thinking about future jobs, school, sports and clubs, romantic relationships, and the list goes on. With all of this, divorce might add to the list to make it more stressful for the child resulting in emotional and behavioral issues. However, if a parent did not want a divorce because of this reason, the outcome might not be as well aspected as one might think. If a child’s parents are always fighting, this will add more stress to the family and also may emotionally damage a child. As stated previously, parents have some say in how a child is emotionally. A child will also see how their parents interact and their imitate behavior, as well as negative energy (Moges and Weber, 2014). Fighting parents that stay together because of their child may end up doing more harm than none. Broken homes may not harm a child developmentally or cognitively but instead may have an important role within their education, behavior, social skills, and emotional skills depending on their age.

Compared to a child being from a divorced family, a child that is born outside of marriage or only has one parent may “reach adulthood with less education, earn less income, … are more likely to have a nonmarital birth, … and report more symptoms of depression” than a divorced child would (Amato, 2005). The single parent is also at a loss financially, making it harder to buy their child things for school they will need to succeed. When it comes to education, children with broken homes may experience a lack of academic progress. This may “stem from a number of factors, including instability in the home environment, inadequate financial resources and inconsistent routines” (Green). Education is generally linked with the type of job a person receives, which in turn predicts their income. A survey done on average income based on the level of education in 1996 showed a high school graduate having $7,143 more annually than a high school dropout. Continuing, someone with a bachelor’s degree shows to have $23,101 more annually than a high school dropout, and an advanced degree shows $46,306 more (Fagan, 1999). The story is the same with divorced parents: earning annually $29,500 less than a married family would, says a study was done in 1995 (Fagan, 1999). A child with only one parent is two times more likely to drop out of school, making it more difficult for them to earn a higher annual income than someone who had graduated high school. Research shows “that children do better at school and exhibit fewer behavioral problems when nonresident fathers pay child support”(King cited in Amato, 2005). With more money coming into the household, children are more likely to receive things that will help them in school as well as outside of school, building their academic progress, and making them stay in school.

I conducted a survey asking teens the marital status of parents and also behavior they have shown previously in their life. Although I only got thirteen responses, they were responses I was not intending to get. Out of the eight people who said their parents were married, five of them said they have suffered from aggressive and depressive behavior. Out of the four people who said they had divorced parents, none of them suffered from aggressive/ depressive behavior. It’s already been confirmed with research that, on average, children will be better off growing up in a home where there are two biological parents that maintain a safe environment for their children. As far as depression goes, depression can be triggered by a lot of things including grief, stress, major life changes, and even side effects of medication (Tandoc, 2016).  Depression and aggressive behavior cannot always be directly connected to a child’s parent’s relationship, but on average it has a big impact on the child’s life. However, if a child is experiencing this type of behavior and it is directly linked to the married parents, it may be because of fighting. E. Mark Cummings, a psychologist at the University of Notre Dame, explains how “[k]ids pay close attention to their parents’ emotions for information about how safe they are in the family” (Cummings cited in Divecha, 2014). Children go home for a place to feel safe, not attacked. Understanding how close children follow their parent’s emotions will make parents think differently about what they are saying when around their children. Cummings goes on to say “[w]hen parents are destructive, the collateral damage to kids can last a lifetime” (Cummings cited in Divecha, 2014). Parents have an impact on their children directly, but also collaterally, meaning they do not know what ways their parents have impacted them. When I was growing up, I remembered a fight my parents had that I could not remember until something triggered it. After remembering the memory, I realized why I feel the way I do towards aggressive behavior. This has impacted me, and most likely will throughout my life, because of a fight my parents had when I was younger. This continues to show the effect that parents have on their children, even if they are still married. But in the end, several studies still show children who have divorced parents may experience struggles such as these and many others that will hinder their life in the future.

It is hard to pinpoint what makes a child behave a certain way, or do things the way that they do. But it has been shown over and over through research that broken homes affect children, depending on their age emotional standpoint with their parents, more than married families do. There is never one way that a child can be raised, and just because one may be brought up in a broken home does not mean they will suffer from depression or emotional problems. Broken homes will not necessarily hinder a child’s development or cognitive ability, however, it may cause a problem with their education or behavior. On average, a single parent or divorced parents earn less money than a married family does, making it harder to pursue things that their children might need for education or other needs, causing further problems in the future. It is important for families to understand how to provide a stable and safe home for children to grow up in to limit problems, such as these. In the long run, a child that grows up in a safe environment will grow into a well-adjusted adult and will pay off in the generations to come.

Works Cited

Amato, P. (2005).  – The Future of Children -. Retrieved December 8, 2016, from§ionid=692

Divecha, D. (2014). What Happens to Children When Parents Fight. Retrieved December 15, 2016, from

Green, A. The Effect of a Broken Family on Development. Retrieved December 2, 2016, from

Fagan, P. (1999). How Broken Families Rob Children of Their Chances for Future Prosperity. Retrieved December 12, 2016, from

Fowler, K. How Does Divorce Affect Girls and Boys Differently? | Your Divorce Questions. Retrieved December 5, 2016, from

Moges, B., & Weber, K. (2014). Parental Influence on the Emotional Development of Children | Developmental Psychology at Vanderbilt. Retrieved December 12, 2016, from

Normal Child Behavior (2015, November 21). 4, 2016, from

Sanz de Galdeano, A., & Vuri, D. (2004). Does Parental Divorce Affect Adolescents’ Cognitive Development? Evidence from Longitudinal Data. Retrieved from

Solomon, B. (2004). Why Isn’t My Child Reaching His Milestones? Retrieved December 12, 2016, from

Tandoc, D. (2016) Lecture on Depression                                                                         Personal Collection of D. Tandoc, Okemos High School, Okemos MI

Wallerstein, J., & Blakeslee, S. (2006). What Is the Best Time to Divorce? Retrieved December 12, 2016, from

Welton, R. (2016). The Effect of Divorce on Early Childhood Development. Retrieved December 8, 2016, from


Broken Homes and Child Development/Behavior: Reflection

      When researching my topic on how broken homes affect child development/behavior, I realized how many layers the conversation can have. At first, the broken home I thought of was like my own: divorced parents. But then I started peeling away the layers, like what about a single parent, or a child with no parents? Although I might not use the argument of a child without any parents, I think it’s helpful to understand. When researching, I found it important to have a wide stretch of knowledge over a lot of different sections because you never know what might come in handy later. You might be able to compare or contrast different sections, regardless if you are going to use it in your research paper or not. I think that this helps with further understanding of a topic. Not only are there different types of broken homes, but there are different ways that the children can be affected. Mentally and socially are just some of the issues, but it goes deeper with that including education.

     Currently, I’m gathering information and starting to think about how I am going to lay out my essay. I’ve been thinking of explaining things that a child needs in order to develop properly, or even a “normal” behavior that a child is supposed to have, which aren’t very easy subjects to touch on. Yes, there are certain guidelines that parents go by when making sure their children are hitting milestones, but there have been a lot of scepticism of whether or not it’s a bad thing that these children are not hitting their milestones at the right time. As for behavior, that’s a touchy subject.What’s the difference between behavior and personality? Can your behavior become your personality? Then in the end, there are always people saying things like “it’s a phase” and “everyone’s different”. This is going to require further understanding.

     I realized when doing research that there may be articles out there that won’t necessarily be of any help, even if it has to do with your topic. For example, I read an article about Freud’s theories of the different sexual stages that children go through within developing. It’s interesting and necessary to understand to get another person’s point of view, but one of the major points that he made that wrapped everything together had to do with the sex of the parents: one being a male, and one being a female. This got me thinking about same sex marriages and them raising children, which I’m all for. But I thought that this might be a whole other research paper within itself. I decided that using his theory would bring up the topic of a same sex couple raising a child,and it wouldn’t strengthen my paper because a child having two parents is not classified as a broken home. It might also weaken it by me getting off the main issue of my topic, which is not about same sex couples raising children. There are still many things that I need to look into because I’ve only scratched the surface of this topic. I need to start fine tuning all the little details, like the behavior part, to start bringing everything together.


(If you’re curious: The Freud article I talked about)


Child Development Within Broken Homes

     I’m going to be researching how a broken home affects child development. I decided to research this because my parents are divorced and I’m interested in child development. I’m wondering if all broken homes act the same, or if there is a better time for the parents to divorce more than others. There might be other questions that might pop on later on, but right now I’m researching the basics.

In this article, there are different stand points of how divorce might affect a child, ranging from preschool to adolescence. On the emotional side, it says older kids will be less affected than the younger ones. But when it comes to the social standpoint, teenagers are more likely to act cynical towards people they talk to, and may even start to show bullying behavior. My parents lived with each other after they got divorced because they didn’t want to split the household up. It may be because of this I never developed bullying behavior.

The end of this article explains that divorce “changes not only the structure of the family but also its dynamics” (Green). Older kids may start to act more like a parent to their younger siblings and take on more roles around the household, such as more chores. I know that this fact is true with my family situation, even though I don’t have younger siblings. Every night I cook dinner and take care of the house because my dad is at work.

Are there exceptions to these theories?

Do parents even matter when it comes to their child’s emotions/education/social life?

Does a child’s emotions/education/social life depend on the time their parents get divorced?

Work Cited

Green, Anna. “The Effect of a Broken Family on Development.” Our Everyday Life. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Nov. 2016.