characters demonstrate appropriate symbolic thinking W r i t i n g
Many popular children’s authors craft their stories using psychological principles of child development to illustrate main ideas and themes of the story.
1. Select a childrens book, choose a classic or well – loved story book that is appropriate to be read to children ages 2-6. It may be a book that you enjoyed someone reading to you as a child, or if you are a parent.
2. As you read the book, take note of any psychological development topics that the author used in the story. You may answer the questions included on the analysis form.
4. After analyzing the children’s book and identifying the psychological elements included in the story, Write an analysis essay of the book that summarizes your results.
5. Be sure to include information that addresses all of the developmental psychology elements that you identified in the story.
6. Use proper essay format and your assignment should be typed, double spaced and minimum 3-5 pages in length.
In your analysis essay, be sure to address the points below that are appropriate for the book/story that you chose.
1. Give the title of the book, the name of the author, the name of the illustrator and the date of publication
2. Was this a book that you enjoyed as a child? Yes/no. If yes, provide one reason why you enjoyed it. If no, why did you choose the book you used for this assignment?
3. Choose a minimum of 5 developmental psychology concepts from the list below that are included as elements in the book/story that you chose.
Describe examples of each of the appropriate concepts that appear in the story. The book that you choose may not include or illustrate all of the topics in the list. You need only to address those concepts that are present in the story that you chose.
Cognitive Psychological Development Concepts
(a) Does the story contain elements of rhyme and repetition in the text that promotes thought, language and memory development?
(b) Do any of the characters in the story exhibit egocentrism/egocentric thoughts and behaviors? (ex. Animals that dress and talk like a child or conflicts or misunderstandings that arise from the main character’s self-centered view )
(c) Do any of the characters in the story exhibit centration in their thinking or relationships with others? (stories about the characters in the book who have only one prominent feature such as a character’s focusing on one special goal, one special object, one special person, one special experience)
(d) Using the descriptions of cognitive development that Piaget’s Stage Theory provides, what stage of cognitive development would you say that the major characters in the story are reflecting through their behavior and thoughts? Provide a reason to support your observation.
Psycho Social Development Concepts
(e) Using the stage and behavior descriptions of Erikson’s Psycho Social Development Theory, what stage of psycho social development do you believe the main characters are demonstrating through their behavior and interactions with others and reactions in the story?
(f) Were there any effects that resulted from or depended on literal or figurative language? Did the main character or characters demonstrate appropriate symbolic thinking (from Piaget’s theory) or were there misunderstandings because figurative language and symbols were taken literally?
(g) Describe story elements that illustrate strong ties of family bonding and friendship, as well as any indications of the temperaments of the main characters. Using Chess’s temperament scale, how would you categorize the temperaments of the major characters in the story? (easy, difficult, inconsistent)? What behaviors did the major characters display that led you to that conclusion?
(h) If the story included a parent or caregiver, what kind of parenting style would you say that individual used? Use Baumrind’s Styles of Caregiving Theory (authoritative, authoritarian, permissive, uninvolved) to identify the parenting style and provide one reason to support your choice.
(i) Were there any story elements that reflected a character’s fear or anxiety about separation? If so, how was this anxiety handled in the story?
(j) Did the main character experience any identity development issues such as self- esteem issues, gender, bullying, or autonomy development? What issues were addressed and what were the solutions to the issues?
4. What did you think about this assignment? Did it enable you to see how psychological principles are a part of so many experiences in our lives? Did you find this activity useful and helpful to you in understanding the psychological components of developmental psychology? If yes, in what ways? If no, why was it not helpful?
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