The following reviews the value of understanding human development over a lifetime and highlights key theories from within the first five years of life as recognized in the Seasons of Life video series. Included is a reflection on a theory of attachment, three clocks that influence life, temperament and early memories. How these theories pertain to the individual‘s early development and effects in later years will be discussed along with the author’s personal opinion.
Seasons of Life: Early Perspective What appears to be universally interesting about life is people. This is evidenced by the large amount of information, resources and theories that surround people and their development. The video series Seasons of Life: Infancy and Early Childhood (1990) highlight key elements in early development and their effects that contribute toward the individual throughout their life.
One theory mentioned in Seasons of Life, is that of attachment. John Bowlby expressed that innately humans are equipped at birth to cause attachment to their caregivers. If the attachment is successful the cycle should continue, acting as the foundation for healthy, successful relationships throughout the lifep (Bowlby, 1982). Each of the child subjects in the Seasons of Life appeared to have successful attachment to their caregiver. This was regardless of whether the child stayed primarily in the home for care and was surrounded with extended family, had few local relatives, spent time in day care or had a grandparent as a main caregiver.
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Also reviewed in the film were three clocks that caused influence in people’s lives. The first was a biological clock. This clock was said to have the strongest influence early on, and as early as in the womb. The second was a social clock. This clock was described as society’s age related expectations of the individual at any given time (Berk, 2010). For example that people should marry in their twenties then follow with having children, et cetera. The social clock was also described as evolving with societal changes in expectations. The psychological clock was listed third and described as the passage of time in people’s lives. This timekeeper could drive people to become themselves. Examples stated were of feeling an age rather than the actual years lived and where evidence of deep long-lasting emotional attachment could be revealed in later years.
Another aspect of development highlighted was temperament. A wide range of child temperaments were represented in the film. It was discussed that these dispositions would remain with the children throughout their years. Some were seen as relaxed and easy-going and others were challenging and determined. The narrator discussed that the temperaments seen in early months and years might serve the children later on toward reaching their goals.
Additionally mentioned in the video, and perhaps the most impactful for me, was that the individuals search for the meaning of self could and would be directed back to their earliest memories. Concrete memories were mentioned to be available beginning around 3 to 4 years of age.
Of all the information available in Seasons of Life, that of correlating my feelings of self and my earliest memories was overwhelming. As the narrator spoke, my mind wandered over many memories that, now I understand, forged much of what I have become today. Some were bitter, others sweet, and they all held an interesting explanation of why and how I have become me.
I greatly enjoyed watching Seasons of Life. With a smile, I was really happy to see Mr. Rogers one more time. I have since forwarded along the website to many in the hopes it will shed light on a current struggle or awaken an understanding, just as it has for me. I plan on employing these new resources in my interactions with family and those around me while anticipating what the next episode has to offer.
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