Posted: March 28th, 2022
Evaluating Child Development Issues
I have chosen the article from the New York Times. Dr. Perri Klass wrote this article and the topic of this article is ‘The Makings of Our Earliest Memories’. The author’s main subject is memory and for this reason, she is targeting parents and adults in this article by making them aware about the memory system of childhood and the abilities of children to retrieve their memories.
The author is trying to determine that do infants have the ability to remember past events and if they do then since when this ability develops. The author tells us how our memory develops during different stages of our life. Small children do have memories but with the passage of time, these memories seem to fade away (Klass). She says that babies seem to remember doctors dress color and that is why when the doctors approach them they start crying due to the bad experience they had with the doctor earlier. This clearly shows that even babies have memory, which they are able to recall on any particular situation. As the babies grow up, they fail to recall these memories. According to the author, this happens because young babies go through extensive learning phase due to which they are not able to consolidate their thoughts and as a result, they fail to retrieve memories. Professor Charles Nelson indicated another reason for the failure to recall memory. According to him in order to recall memory our thoughts should be interconnected with the events related to it, which will not only make sense but will also help us to link and retrieve our childhood memories and failure to do so may result in memory loss. The author goes on further and emphasize that parents should discuss memories with their children so they can figure out how memory works. In addition to this, she also says that other factors such as development of language, consciousness, personality and personal narrative plays an important part in the development of memory (Klass).
The article emphasize on both heredity as well as environment. Both things contribute a great deal in the memory development of young children. The neurons, which are responsible for the development of memory, are the same in children and adults, which indicates heredity. The author also says that formation of memory occurs in every young child but most of these children are not able to retrieve these memories when they grow up (Klass). Apart from this the author also emphasize on the environment in which the child is brought up and she says that parents should talk to their young children about their childhood memories so they may understand that how this system works and it may also help them to recall their child hood memories when they become grown ups.
This article includes scientific findings and expert opinion from various people mainly including professors and doctors. The writer herself is a doctor and with the inclusion of opinion of other experts and their scientific findings this topics becomes more interesting and answers our question as to why most of us are not able to recall our early childhood memories (Klass).
The theoretical perspective that the author seem to use are biological and psychoanalytic. This can also be seen in the experts’ point-of-view and in the scientific findings included in this article. At one point, we are told in this article that due to revolutionary reasons babies have to go through an extensive learning process, which indicates biological perspective, and on the other hand, we see in this article that memory test of two different children belonging to two different cultures showed different results which shows the presence of psychoanalytic perspective.
The author concludes her article by saying that development of memory, development of language, development of consciousness, development of personality and development of personality narrative all occurs side by side and seem to complement each other.
In my opinion, the conclusion seem to be valid because if we try recalling our childhood memories we will notice the strong presence of language skills, consciousness and personality and together all these things helps us in making sense of what we have recalled and how it can be related to us.
Overall, this article has informative implications for children and families. Beside this, it is highly important for parents because they are the one who give most time to their kids and if they once in a while sit with their kids and discuss past events to see how far their child memory can go then the distance of memory retrieval between grown ups and early childhood may be reduced (Klass). This might also help in the better grooming and personality development of our child as the child will be able to understand him in a much better way thus benefitting to the society as a whole (Papalia, Feldman and Feldman, pg 456).
In spite of the fact that the author has put in a very decent effort but there is still a room for more research to be included which can result in a much stronger and clear-cut conclusion. As after reading this article we still cannot determine the actual cause, for the failure to recall our earlier childhood memories and whether it has something to do with the human body and development of brain or, it is due to the external environmental factors exerted upon us during our childhood or, could it be the combination of all these factors (Papalia, Feldman and Feldman, pg 456).
Klass, Dr. Perri. “The Makings of Our Earliest Memories.” 11-06 2012. The New York Times. 17-06 2012 .
Papalia, Diane, Ruth Duskin Feldman and Ruth Feldman. A Child’s World: Infancy Through Adolescence. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2011.
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