Topic 4: Infancy

Discussion 4: Babies
COLLAPSE

You’ve watched Babies. Now discuss the differences you noticed while you watched the film. For example – what was different during the early infancy experiences? What were the differences between caregiving styles? How did cognitive experiences differ? Or physical experiences? Share what you found interesting, and how those early experiences may have impacted later experiences (as seen in the film).

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When you respond to peers remember to create a dialog – did they notice something different than you did? Interpret it differently? Share that. Did a peer share something that you hadn’t thought of? Let them know, and how did that get you thinking? Remember – create a conversation!

**Note: remember not to place value judgments on any parenting or development practices. The purpose of the video is to see differences during the first year across cultures. We are not comparing “better” or “worse” experiences, as there are none. We are acknowledging cultural differences and examining how they impact development.

Welcome to topic 4!

Welcome to topic 4! In this topic, we will be covering infancy – physical, cognitive and social development. You’ll have a chapter and article to read, as well as a film to watch.

Infancy
Infancy is typically thought of as the first year of life. During this period there is such rapid development, physically, cognitively, and socially. Take a minute and compare a newborn baby to a one-year-old. What are the differences between those two comparisons? Then think about a 10-year-old, or even yourself at the beginning of a year and then the end of the year. The development is not nearly as apparent or rapid as it is during those first early years. This is one of the reasons that infancy is so important to study and consider when considering development over time.
First, review the slides here:

Infancy Powerpoints

Next read the article below. It might seem challenging to talk to a baby since they frequently don’t talk back! But, as we learned last topic they are in tuned to social cues, so speaking to them is not only something they enjoy, but it has numerous benefits. Think about what those benefits are as you read.

The Power of Talking to your Baby
The Power of Talking to your Baby – Alternative Formats

I will upload the article above as well

The Power of Talking to your Baby – Alternative Formats Next, watch this film. It follows 4 different babies from birth to their first year. Take notes and compare their development over the year. Who walks first? How much social interaction does each child get? How does their physical development opportunities differ? In general take note of the social, cognitive, and physical development and differences between the 4 babies.

Next, watch this film. It follows 4 different babies from birth to their first year. Take notes and compare their development over the year. Who walks first? How much social interaction does each child get? How does their physical development opportunities differ? In general take note to the social, cognitive and physical development and differences between the 4 babies.

**Note: You will have to rent this film in order to watch it through this page. If you have access to the film from a different location you are welcome to watch it there.

I can give you extra money to watch the film is $3.99 to watch it

The peer response (1) is below. I would post the peer response (2) as soon as another student post it:

Huan Huan Lu
RE: Discussion 4: Babies
COLLAPSE

This documentary showed how the different cultures of rural Namibia, Mongolia, Japan, and the U.S. differ in caregiving directed at the baby from birth to the time they could walk. It showed how cultures differed and in what ways they were similar.

In the beginning, the rest of the mothers did not do anything special during pregnancy. The Namibian mother was rubbing her belly with a red power, following a ritualistic tradition. At birth, the Namibian mother gave birth at home, while the rest gave birth at a hospital. In the U.S., the baby received the most medical care post-birth, unlike in Mongolia, for example, where the baby was immediately tied at the legs after birth and loaded with its mother on the backseat of a motorcycle headed back home over a bumpy road. After birth, tying the legs seems to be a tradition in Mongolia, where the baby’s legs were kept tied during the first months while the mother was away. All of the mothers breastfed except for the American mother, who used baby formula, with the Namibian mother spending the most time breastfeeding, according to the film. The Namibian mother was also the last to stop breastfeeding, as it is shown that she continued breastfeeding even after her baby learned how to stand.

Toys were used in variation between the four, ranging from no toys to playing with a toy almost regularly. In Namibia, the baby never had toys and instead spent most of its time breastfeeding, playing with its mother, or playing with the dirt and rocks around the mother. The baby was exposed entirely and always around the mother, whose full-time job was taking care of the babies with other mothers around her. While the Namibian baby received the most proximity to its mother, the Mongolian baby received the least. The Mongolian baby was usually left alone or in the company of its older sibling, who cluelessly played with it. Toys were available but rarely were for the baby at that age, who was almost toyless and had the yurt to explore with its eyes. A cat that was sometimes present. In Japan, the baby was always between the mother and the father. The Japanese baby had many toys to play with and rode in a cart when the mother was outdoors. Its mother also took it to a kind of session where mothers would play with their newborns, and the newborns would also play with each other. When the mother was unavailable due to work, the baby was kept in the father’s care, who did not give as much close care to the baby and only attended to it sometimes. The American mother always kept her baby busy with a toy and was still playing with the baby or taking him to baby sessions similar to those in Japan, the baby was always the center of the parent’s attention, and the American father was more attentive when the mother was absent than the Japanese father, although in both cases the mother was more playful and caring, and depended less on toys than her spouse. The interesting thing I found was the father is absent in Namibia and Mongolia. However, In Namibia, the mother never leaves the child, but the mother does not seem to be much in Mongolia. It may impact the distance of their relationships with their fathers.

Topic 4 Original Discussion Post: 11/7 Topic 4 Peer Responses (2): 11/8

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