Archive | September, 2015

Inserm and Pierre and Marie Curie University study: Early exposure to tobacco can cause behavioral problems in children

28 Sep

There are numerous reasons why smoking is considered bad for an individual and there are numerous research studies which list the reasons. Studies are showing how bad second hand smoke is for children. A MNT article, Smoking During Pregnancy May Lower Your Child’s Reading Scores:

Babies born to mothers who smoke more than a pack of cigarettes a day while pregnant have lower reading scores and a harder time with reading tests, compared with children whose mothers do not smoke.
This is the conclusion of a recent study conducted by researchers at Yale School of Medicine and published in The Journal of Pediatrics in November 2012. The reading tests measured how well children read out loud and understood what they were reading.

This isn’t the first study to suggest that smoking in pregnancy may affect a child’s future health and development. A study released in August 2012 said that smoking during pregnancy increases a child’s risk of asthma. In addition, a 2009 study linked smoking during pregnancy to behavioral problems among 3 and 4 year olds boys.

Jeffrey Gruen, M.D., professor of pediatrics and genetics at Yale and his team examined data from over 5,000 kids enrolled in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), which is an extensive trial of 15,211 kids from the years 1990 to 1992 at the University of Bristol in the U.K.

The experts compared 7 different areas with smoking during pregnancy:
• single-word identification
• reading speed
• spelling
• accuracy
• reading comprehension
• real reading
• non-word reading

The researchers adjusted for socioeconomic status, how the mother and child interacted with one another, and 14 other impacting factors.

This latest study is another in a line of studies suggesting that giving up smoking could play an important role in your child’s future health and wellbeing.

Experts discovered through their experiments that the children whose mothers smoked at least one pack a day while pregnant, had reading scores that were 21% lower than the children whose mothers did not smoke while pregnant. The reading tests were given to the kids when they were 7 years old, and again when they were 9.

On average, kids who were born to mothers who smoked during pregnancy were ranked 7 spots lower in terms of reading accuracy and capability to comprehend reading material than their classmates whose mothers did not smoke…. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/253100.php

An Inserm and Pierre and Marie Curie University study adds behavior problems to the list of woes children of smokers suffer.

Science Daily reported in Early exposure to tobacco can cause behavioral problems in children:

Researchers from Inserm and Pierre and Marie Curie University (UPMC), in collaboration with the university hospitals of 6 French cities, have analysed data on pre- and postnatal exposure to tobacco in the homes of 5,200 primary school children. They show that this exposure is associated with a risk of behavioural disorders in children, particularly emotional and conduct disorders. The association is stronger when exposure takes place both during pregnancy and after birth. These data show the risk associated with smoking in early life and its behavioural repercussions when the child is of school-going age.These results are published in the journal PLOS ONE.

The consequences of tobacco exposure are widely documented. It leads to many illnesses, including asthma. However, the potential role of environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) is much less well known in terms of its link to behavioural problems in children. In this context, the team led by Isabella Annesi-Maesano, Inserm Research Director at Unit 1136, “Pierre Louis Public Health Institute” (Inserm/UPMC) examined the association between pre- and postnatal ETS exposure and behavioural problems in children….

These data come from the 6 Cities Study (see box), which targeted 5,221 primary school children. Prenatal (in utero smoking) and postnatal exposure to tobacco smoke in the home was assessed using a standardised questionnaire completed by the parents. Behavioural disorders were assessed via the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) used to assess the behavioural and psychosocial functioning of the children, which was also completed by the parents.

In greater detail, emotional disorders are associated with exposure to ETS during both the prenatal and postnatal periods, which concerns 21% of the children in the study. Conduct disorders are also associated with ETS exposure in these children. The association also exists in cases of prenatal or postnatal exposure alone, but is less pronounced.

These observations seem to confirm those carried out in animals, i.e. that the nicotine contained in tobacco smoke may have a neurotoxic effect on the brain. During pregnancy, nicotine in tobacco smoke stimulates acetylcholine receptors, and causes structural changes in the brain. In the first months of life, exposure to tobacco smoke generates a protein imbalance that leads to altered neuronal growth….. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/09/150928103029.htm?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=facebook

Citation:

Early exposure to tobacco can cause behavioral problems in children
Date: September 28, 2015

Source: INSERM

Summary:
Researchers have analyzed data on pre- and postnatal exposure to tobacco in the homes of 5,200 primary school children, and have found that early exposure to tobacco can lead to behavioral problems in children.

Journal Reference:
1. Julie Chastang, Nour Baïz, Jean Sébastien Cadwallader, Sarah Robert, John L Dywer, Denis André Charpin, Denis Caillaud, Frédéric de Blay, Chantal Raherison, François Lavaud, Isabella Annesi-Maesano. Correction: Postnatal Environmental Tobacco Smoke Exposure Related to Behavioral Problems in Children. PLOS ONE, 2015; 10 (9): e0138164 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0138164

Here is the summary of the research from PLOS:

Postnatal Environmental Tobacco Smoke Exposure Related to Behavioral Problems in Children
Julie Chastang,#1,2,3 Nour Baïz,#1,3,* Jean Sébastien Cadwalladder,2 Sarah Robert,2 John Dywer,1 Denis André Charpin,4 Denis Caillaud,5 Frédéric de Blay,6 Chantal Raherison,7 François Lavaud,8 and Isabella Annesi-Maesano1,3
Kenji Hashimoto, Editor
Author information ► Article notes ► Copyright and License information ►
This article has been corrected. See PLoS One. 2015 September 9; 10(9): e0138164.
This article has been cited by other articles in PMC.

Go to:
Abstract
Objective

The purpose of this study was to examine the association between pre and post environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) exposure and behavioral problems in schoolchildren.

Methods
In the cross-sectional 6 cities Study conducted in France, 5221 primary school children were investigated. Pre- and postnatal exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke at home was assessed using a parent questionnaire. Child’s behavioral outcomes (emotional symptoms and conduct problems) were evaluated by the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) completed by the parents.

Results
ETS exposure during the postnatal period and during both pre- and postnatal periods was associated with behavioral problems in children. Abnormal emotional symptoms (internalizing problems) were related to ETS exposure in children who were exposed during the pre- and postnatal periods with an OR of 1.72 (95% Confidence Interval (CI)= 1.36-2.17), whereas the OR was estimated to be 1.38 (95% CI= 1.12-1.69) in the case of postnatal exposure only. Abnormal conduct problems (externalizing problems) were related to ETS exposure in children who were exposed during the pre- and postnatal periods with an OR of 1.94 (95% CI= 1.51-2.50), whereas the OR was estimated to be 1.47 (95% CI=1.17-1.84) in the case of postnatal exposure only. Effect estimates were adjusted for gender, study center, ethnic origin, child age, low parental education, current physician diagnosed asthma, siblings, preterm birth and single parenthood.

Conclusion
Postnatal ETS exposure, alone or in association with prenatal exposure, increases the risk of behavioral problems in school-age children.
Go to:
Introduction
The consequences of childhood environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) exposure have often been described [1, 2] and include many physical symptoms or diseases such as asthma or sudden infant death syndrome. However, much less is known about the potential role of ETS exposure in the development of behavioral problems in children. Association between behavioral problems and ETS exposure during fetal development has been suggested in several studies [3–5]. Recently, a dose-response relationship was reported between postnatal ETS exposure at home and hyperactivity/inattention as well as conduct problems in preschool children [6]. Furthermore, in a prospective birth cohort study, Tiesler et al. investigates the impact of passive smoking on behavioral problems. In this study, they found that not only maternal smoking during pregnancy but also paternal smoking at home is associated with hyperactivity/inattention problems in children [7].
Few studies have investigated the relationship between postnatal ETS and emotional symptoms or conduct problems. The purpose of this study was to investigate, in a large population-based sample of children and using internationally referenced instruments, the relationships between behavioral problems (emotional symptoms and conduct problems) and exposure to pre- and mostly postnatal ETS exposure.
Go to:

Materials and Methods
Participants
9615 children were recruited in primary school (CM1 and CM2 in France) in the frame of the French 6 Cities Study (6C Study) according to a protocol described in a previous study [8]. The sample was taken from all pupils in the 401 relevant classes from 108 schools randomly selected in the six French communities (Bordeaux, Clermont-Ferrand, Creteil, Marseille, Strasbourg and Reims), which were chosen for the contrast in their air quality.
7781 questionnaires have been collected. A total of 5221 children (54.3%), for whom complete data on ETS exposure and at least one of the two outcome variables (emotional symptoms or conduct problems) were available, have been included in the present study.

Behavioral problems
The Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) is a validated questionnaire used to assess mental and behavioral strengths and difficulties in 3–16 years old children, which has been endorsed in France [9]. All the questionnaires were completed by the parents of the children. Emotional symptoms and conduct problems were measured through the SDQ on childrens’ behavior in the past 6 months. In each scale, five items were scored, using a three-point Likert scale: 0 for « not true », 1 for « somewhat true » or 2 for « very true » and summed up into score ranging from 0 to 10. According to the normative banding method for parent-reported SDQ scores in France [9], the scores were categorized to « normal », « borderline » or « abnormal » using the following cut-off points: 0–3, 4 and 5–10 respectively for emotional problems and 0–2, 3, 4–10 for conduct problems.

Exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS)
Active smoking behavior of the mother, the father and any other household members at home during pregnancy, at 1 year of age and at the moment of the study was reported in the questionnaire. Children were defined as « never » being exposed to ETS when the mother reported no smoking during pregnancy, and when no smoking at home (mother, father and other members) was reported at 1 year of age and at the moment of the study.
Children were classified as being only prenatally exposed to ETS when the mother reported smoking during pregnancy but no smoking at home was reported at 1 year of age and at the moment of the study. Children were classified as being only postnatally exposed to ETS when smoking at home at 1 year of age or at the moment of the study was reported, but when the mother did not smoke during pregnancy. Pre- and postnatal ETS exposure was defined for children whose mothers had smoked during pregnancy and whose family had reported smoking at home at 1 year of age or at the moment of the study.

Statistical analysis
The characteristics of our study population (N = 5221) were compared to the sample of children without complete data (N = 2560), by using Chi-square tests. We also compared these characteristics in children according to their emotional symptoms and conduct problems, using Kruskal-Wallis tests.
In the unadjusted models, a total of 5077 children were included in the analyses of emotional symptoms and of 5126 children in the analyses of conduct problems.
We used a multinomial logistic regression model to analyze the association between behavioral problems and ETS exposure [10]. The dependent variables (emotional symptoms and conduct problems) were classified in three categories (normal, borderline and abnormal). Results are presented as odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI). Covariate selection was based on the statistical significance of comparison tests between our study population and the rest of the population, and based on the known relationships to behavioral problems and/or ETS exposure. Parental education was defined as high if both parents attained tertiary level and low otherwise (primary and/or secondary). Children were considered to have a recent asthma diagnosis if they had been diagnosed by a doctor with asthma in the last 12 months. The variable “siblings” was classified into “presence of one or more siblings” and “no sibling”. Preterm birth was defined as a live birth before 37 completed weeks of gestation.
The final models were adjusted for gender, study center, ethnic origin, child age, low parental education, current physician diagnosed asthma, siblings, preterm birth and single parenthood.
In addition, interactions between ETS exposure and the covariates have been tested.
Dataset used in this work is given in S1 Dataset. All statistical analyses were performed using the statistical software SAS version 9.3 (SAS Institute Inc., Cary, NC, USA).

See, Prenatal care fact sheet http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/prenatal-care.html

Our goal as a society should be a healthy child in a healthy family who attends a healthy school in a healthy neighborhood. ©

Resources:

1. A History of Tobacco
http://archive.tobacco.org/History/Tobacco_History.html

2. American Lung Association’s Smoking and Teens Fact Sheet Women and Tobacco Use
African Americans and Tobacco Use
American Indians/Alaska Natives and Tobacco Use
Hispanics and Tobacco Use
Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders and Tobacco Use
Military and Tobacco Use
Children/Teens and Tobacco Use
Older Adults and Tobacco Use
http://www.lung.org/stop-smoking/about-smoking/facts-figures/specific-populations.html

3. Center for Young Women’s Health A Guide for Teens http://www.youngwomenshealth.org/smokeinfo.html

4. Kroger Resources Teens and Smoking

http://kroger.staywellsolutionsonline.com/Wellness/Smoking/Teens/

5. Teens Health’s Smoking

http://kidshealth.org/teen/drug_alcohol/tobacco/smoking.html

6. Quit Smoking Support.com
http://www.quitsmokingsupport.com/teens.htm

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Sitting on your fat butt can make you stupid

27 Sep

Here’s today’s COMMENT FROM AN OLD BLACK FART: sitting on your fat butt can make you stupid. Science Daily reported in Types of athletic training affect how brain communicates with muscles:

Using endurance training or strength and resistance training not only prepares an athlete for different types of sports, they can also change the way the brain and muscles communicate with each other.

A University of Kansas study shows that the communication between the brain and quadriceps muscles of people who take part in endurance training, such as running long distances, is different than those who regularly took part in resistance training and those who were sedentary. The findings may offer clues to the type of physical activity humans are most naturally suited to.

Trent Herda, assistant professor of health, sport and exercise sciences, and Michael Trevino, a doctoral student, conducted studies in which they measured muscle responses of five people who regularly run long distances, five who regularly lift weights and five sedentary individuals who regularly do neither. The studies have been published in the Journal of Sports Sciences and Muscle and Nerve.

Among the findings, Herda and Trevino showed that the quadriceps muscle fibers of the endurance trainers were able to fire more rapidly.

“The communication between the brains and their muscles was slightly different than the resistance trainers and sedentary individuals,” Herda said of endurance trainers. “This information also suggested that resistance trainers and those who are sedentary were more likely to fatigue sooner, among other things.”

Survey participants were 15 healthy volunteers. The endurance trainers had consistently taken part in a structured running program for at least three years prior to the study and ran an average of 61 miles a week and did not take part in resistance training. The resistance trainers had consistently taken part in a weight-training program for at least four years prior to the study. They took part in resistance training four to eight hours per week and reported doing at least one repetition of a back squat of twice their body mass. One reported doing a squat of 1.5 times his or her body weight, but none engaged in aerobic activity such as swimming, jogging or cycling. The sedentary participants did not take part in any structured physical exercise for three years prior to the study…http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/09/150918132022.htm

Although, the University of Kansas study looked at how different types of exercise affect the communication of the brain with muscles, this is in accord with the Health and Fitness Association (Association) post, The Exercise–Brain Connection.

According to the Association:

Cognitive Function
A sedentary lifestyle affects the brain—and in turn lessens mental capacity. Sibley and Etnier (2003) found a clear connection between how much schoolchildren exercised and their cognitive performance: the more aerobic exercise the children engaged in, the better they performed on verbal, perceptual and mathematical tests. The same pattern of results was found in older adults: aerobic training improved cognitive performance (Colcombe & Kramer 2003), and active lifestyles decreased age-related risks for cognitive impairment and dementia (Yaffe et al. 2009). Not surprisingly, these cognitive effects were accompanied by clear changes in brain structure and function…. http://www.ideafit.com/fitness-library/the-exercisendashbrain-connection

Jennifer Larino of the Times-Picayune (NOLA) reported in Couch potato crisis? More Americans ‘totally sedentary,’ Wall Street Journal reports:

The number of Americans who say they have participated in no physical activity in the past year has hit its highest point since 2007, The Wall Street Journal reports.
The report cites figures from the annual Physical Activity Council, which reports about 28 percent of Americans age 6 and over were “totally sedentary” last year, meaning they did not participate at least once in any of the more than 100 physical activities the survey listed. That is about 83 million Americans total.
That is the highest level of inactivity since the survey fine-tuned its sports and fitness list, excluding activities such as billiards and darts, the report says….http://www.nola.com/news/index.ssf/2015/04/more_americans_totally_sedenta.html

This rise in the number of sedentary individuals affects both the national health, but the ability to participate in the democratic process. A stretch, the reader might opine. Consider this quote from Jon Gruber, the architect of Obamacare:

Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really really critical for the thing to pass
3 Jonathan Gruber Videos: Americans “Too Stupid to…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Adrdmmh7bMoCached
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Adrdmmh7bMo

See, Obama promised Obamacare wouldn’t do exactly what Gruber says it will do http://www.cnn.com/2014/11/18/politics/gruber-obamacare-promises/index.html

Bottom line, pun intended is that sedentary folk harm their health, the wealth of the country paying increased health care costs and the political dynamic because they don’t have the mental or physical energy to participate giving the Jon Grubers of the world, free reign.

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HARD QUESTION Update: Do Black folk REALLY want to succeed in America? Choice of college major affects future earnings

20 Sep

Here’s today’s COMMENT FROM AN OLD BLACK FART. All moi can say is one has a Constitutional right to be a MORON. One must ask what are folk thinking and where do they want to go in THIS society and not some mythical Africa which most will never see and which probably does not exist. Remember, folk live in THIS society, at THIS time and in THIS place.

Moi wrote in Black people MUST develop a culture of success: Michigan State revokes a football scholarship because of raunchy rap video:
The question must be asked, who is responsible for MY or YOUR life choices? Let’s get real, certain Asian cultures kick the collective butts of the rest of Americans. Why? It’s not rocket science. These cultures embrace success traits of hard work, respect for education, strong families, and a reverence for success and successful people. Contrast the culture of success with the norms of hip-hop and rap oppositional culture.
See, Hip-hop’s Dangerous Values
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1107107/posts and Hip-Hop and rap represent destructive life choices: How low can this genre sink? https://drwilda.com/2013/05/01/hip-hop-and-rap-represent-destructive-life-choices-how-low-can-this-genre-sink/

One person does not speaks for a group, but members of a group can often provide useful insight about the group.
Danielle Douglas-Gabriel reported in the Washington Post article, Racial disparities in college major selection exacerbate earnings gap:

African American and Hispanic students disproportionately earn more bachelors degrees in low-paying majors, putting them at higher risk for financial instability after graduation, according to a new study from Young Invincibles, an advocacy group.
The study identified the highest-paying and lowest-paying majors using data from the U.S. Education Department and Payscale. The highest-paying majors through mid-career were primarily in science, technology, engineering and math-related fields, while the lowest were in law enforcement, education and professional studies.
Researchers found African Americans are over-represented in four of the six lowest-paying fields; the same is true for Hispanic students in three of the six majors at the bottom of the income ladder. Starting salaries in low-paid majors are approximately $35,000 a year and barely grow to $55,000 within 10 or 15 years into a career. By contrast, students with STEM degrees start out making at least $50,000 and can reasonably expect to make more than $75,000 by the middle of their careers.
On the bright side, African Americans are gaining ground in engineering, mathematics and science technologies majors. Still, they only obtain 5 percent of the degrees awarded in each of those lucrative fields. Hispanic students, meanwhile, are registering similar results, which experts say is a clear indication that policymakers and educators need to pay extra attention to both minority groups to close racial income gaps…. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/grade-point/wp/2015/09/16/racial-disparities-in-college-major-selection-exacerbates-earnings-gap-3/

Here is the press release:

New Brief Finds Major Racial Disparities in College Major Selection

Posted on September 16, 2015 by Colin Seeberger

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

September 16, 2015
Contact: Colin Seeberger, colin.seeberger@ younginvincibles.org, 214.223.2913
New Brief Finds Major Racial Disparities in College Major Selection, Boosts Case for Providing Outcomes Data by Major
[WASHINGTON]–Today, Young Invincibles released a new brief called Major Malfunction, which looks at racial disparities in college major selection. The report finds African American and Latino students are overrepresented in the lowest paying majors, Latinos are underrepresented in almost all top paying majors, and African Americans are represented at half the rate they should be in important STEM majors.
This brief comes on the heels of the White House unveiling its new College Scorecard, providing students and families with information about institution cost, graduation rates, and average starting salaries. This is a step in the right direction, but students and families need additional information to fully be able to weigh the value of their investment, and that information is major-level data.
“Our research shows that not only are there vast disparities in educational attainment by race, but the inequities extend to fields of study, with students of color underrepresented in the most lucrative fields,” said report authors Tom Allison and Konrad Mugglestone. “For this reason, it is all the the more important to provide students with data about outcomes at both the institution- and major-levels so that they can better asses which schools and fields of study will best set them up for success upon graduation.” http://younginvincibles.org/major-malfunction/

Here are some highlights from the study:

In brief, this analysis finds:

• The top seven highest paying majors, defined through starting and mid-career median salary, are:

• Engineering
• Computer & Information Sciences
• Mathematics & Statistics
• Engineering Technology
• Health Professions
• Business
• Physical Science and Science Technologies

The six majors with the lowest salaries are:

• Family & Consumer Science
• Education
• Theology & Religion
• Legal & Professional Studies
• Homeland Security, Law Enforcement & Firefighting
• Multi-Interdisciplinary Studies
• Latino students are underrepresented in almost all of the top majors identified.
• In 2013, African Americans earned mathematics & statistics, engineering, and physical sciences
degrees at half the rate necessary to achieve an equal distribution of bachelor degrees overall.
• Out of the bottom six majors with the lowest median salaries, African American students are
overrepresented in four of them. Latinos are similarly overrepresented in three of the six….

Conclusion

Students of color already face many disadvantages accessing and completing postsecondary education,
and as we have uncovered, lag behind in completing degrees with the greatest economic returns in the
workforce. Understanding the roots of the disparities explored above is complicated, involving
centuries of racial discrimination, uneven budgetary support for our K-12 education system, social and
environmental conditions, and deficits in our academic advising and student support systems. Tracking
and using robust and reliable education data can shed light on this complicated issue, but our current
postsecondary data infrastructure is inadequate to do so.

A new data paradigm focused on students and outcomes would address issues in this brief. Under such
a paradigm, we could map out which degrees and institutions are leading to certain salaries and careers,
thus equipping students with more information on what institution and program to pursue. Perhaps
more importantly, this would give the higher education community the ability to identify which
institutions excel in serving low-income and first-generation students, as well as students of color. From
there, other institutions looking to help their disadvantaged students succeed in difficult majors could
then learn what tactics and strategies and adapt those best practices in their own programs. This can
only be achieved by overhauling our postsecondary data systems and connecting them to workforce
outcomes, and would be an important first step to addressing racial disparities in areas of study…. http://younginvincibles.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Major-Malfunction_FINAL.pdf

There is no such thing as a “model minority” and getting rid of this myth will allow educators to focus on the needs of the individual student. Still, the choice of many parents to allow their children to make choices which may impact their success should have folk asking the question of what values are being transmitted and absorbed by Black children.

Resources:

Culture of Success
http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/culture-success

How Do Asian Students Get to the Top of the Class?
http://www.greatschools.org/parenting/teaching-values/481-parenting-students-to-the-top.gs

Related:

Is there a model minority?
https://drwilda.com/2012/06/23/is-there-a-model-minority/

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University of Southern California study: Researchers find children who have a plan can overcome adversity

13 Sep

Moi wrote about student motivation in Research papers: Student Motivation: An Overlooked Piece of School Reform https://drwilda.com/2012/05/30/research-papers-student-motivation-an-overlooked-piece-of-school-reform/ One of the citations was Student Motivation: School reform’s missing ingredient:

The summary report and accompanying papers highlight actions that teachers, school leaders, parents, and communities can take to foster student motivation. The following are just a few of the many ideas included in the report:

• Programs that reward academic accomplishments are most effective when they reward students for mastering certain skills or increasing their understanding rather than rewarding them for reaching a performance target or outperforming others.
• Tests are more motivating when students have an opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge through low-stakes tests, performance tasks, or frequent assessments that gradually increase in difficulty before they take a high-stakes test.
• Professional development can help teachers encourage student motivation by sharing ideas for increasing student autonomy, emphasizing mastery over performance, and creating classroom environments where students can take risks without fear of failure
• Parents can foster their children’s motivation by emphasizing effort over ability and praising children when they’ve mastered new skills or knowledge instead of praising their innate intelligence.

Many aspects of motivation are not fully understood, the report and background papers caution, and most programs or studies that have shown some positive results have been small or geographically concentrated. “Because much about motivation is not known, this series of papers should be viewed as a springboard for discussion by policymakers, educators, and parents rather than a conclusive research review,” said Nancy Kober, CEP consultant and co¬author of the summary report…. http://gomasa.org/news/student-motivation-school-reforms-missing-ingredient

Motivation and grit are increasingly becoming research topics.

Science Daily reported in Children overcoming adversity: Researchers find children who have a plan can overcome adversity:

Making a plan can be the difference in overcoming a difficult childhood, while just thinking about those difficulties can drag down the child.

A set of four new studies from researchers at USC and Southwest University in China suggest, contrary to prior belief, children in difficult situations need to do more than dream of a happier and successful future self: They need a strategy for becoming that person.

Two of the studies found eighth graders performed better in school if they had strategies for becoming their future selves, as well as several options for becoming the self that they envision. The other two studies showed that the mere thought of an unhappy childhood was enough to dampen the optimism and the ability of children to plan their escapes.
The set of studies were published online in the Journal Of Adolescence on Aug. 28…. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/09/150908135101.htm

Citation:

Children overcoming adversity
Researchers find children who have a plan can overcome adversity
Date: September 8, 2015

Source: University of Southern California

Summary:

A set of four new studies suggest, contrary to prior belief, children in difficult situations need to do more than dream of a happier and successful future self: They need a strategy for becoming that person. Researchers’ findings of ‘left behind’ children in China could apply to children anywhere enduring adverse situations, say authors of a new report.

Journal Reference:

1. Chongzeng Bi, Daphna Oyserman. Left behind or moving forward? Effects of possible selves and strategies to attain them among rural Chinese children. Journal of Adolescence, 2015; 44: 245 DOI: 10.1016/j.adolescence.2015.08.004

Here is the press article from the University of Southern California:

For children overcoming adversity, dreaming big isn’t enough — they need a plan
USC and China researchers’ findings of ‘left-behind’ children in China could apply to children anywhere enduring adverse situations

BY Emily Gersema

September 8, 2015

Making a plan can mean the difference in overcoming a difficult childhood, while just thinking about those difficulties can drag down the child.

A set of four new studies from researchers at USC and Southwest University in China suggest that, contrary to prior scientific belief, children in difficult situations need to do more than dream of a happier and successful future self: They need a strategy for becoming that person.

Two of the studies found that eighth-graders performed better in school if they had strategies for becoming their future selves, as well as several options for becoming the self that they envision. The other two studies showed that the mere thought of an unhappy childhood was enough to dampen the optimism and the ability of children to plan their escape.
The set of studies were published online in the Journal of Adolescence on Aug. 28.

A population with challenges

The scientists had focused on a population with profound social and economic challenges: rural Chinese children labeled “left behind” because their parents have left them, some as young as 5, usually in the care of elderly grandparents while they seek higher-paying urban jobs far from home.

These parents do not take their children with them because Chinese law requires that children attend school in the area where they were born, said Daphna Oyserman, Dean’s Professor of Psychology and co-director of the USC Dornsife Center for Mind and Society.

As a result, an estimated 40 percent of all Chinese children in rural areas — as many as 60 million — are left behind, according to the All-China Women’s Federation.

“Their parents, like parents everywhere, sacrifice the present for hopes for the future. I started the studies wondering if calling a child ‘left behind’ would have negative consequences with the implication that ‘no one loves me,’ ” Oyserman said. “Or are the parents able to instill in their children this narrative?: ‘We are doing this so our family can move forward.’”
“That is what we found: Like their peers, ‘left-behind children’ who focus on their possible future selves and especially on strategies to attain these possible future selves, fulfill their parents’ ‘moving forward’ narrative,” Oyserman said. “Their academic performance improves, they have fewer problems at school and feel better.”

A universal narrative

The narrative could apply to children anywhere, Oyserman noted. U.S. children, for example, may face homelessness, separation from a parent through divorce or endure the instability of foster care placement.

Daphna Oyserman and her colleagues conducted four studies with four separate groups of children. (Photo/Tania Huiny)
“In our studies, even though children who are left by their parents are clearly emotionally stressed, they are not doing worse academically than the others in their classes,” Oyserman said. “They seem to have gotten this message: ‘Life is hard. Pull yourself up.’”

Oyserman and her colleagues conducted four studies with four separate groups of children, all around 14 years old, in the Chongqing region of China, to gauge their feelings about the future and fatalism, and to determine what helps children rise above difficult circumstances.

Hope and fate

In the first study, 144 students were divided into two groups to ask about their optimism and left-behind status. One group of students was first asked whether it was left behind and then asked about its optimism for the future. Children in the other group were asked the same questions but in reverse order.

“We found that by just thinking about the fact that you could be ‘left behind’ had a negative effect on the kids’ optimism for the future, and it increased their fatalism,” said Oyserman, who conducted the study with Southwest University-China professor Chongzeng Bi.

In the second study, 124 students were again divided into two groups. This time, children were asked about their fatalism, about their images of what might be possible for them in the future and their strategies to get there.

“Again, just thinking about the fact that you could be left behind had a negative impact, in this case, increasing fatalism about the future. These feelings that their fate and future were not in their control also dampened the number of images they had of their future selves, as well as the number of strategies they had to become their future selves,” Oyserman said.
Impact at school

In the next two studies, the researchers asked about the effect of possible selves and strategies on outcomes such as school exams and in behavior. In the third study, 176 ninth-graders described their future selves and strategies to attain them, and answered questions about their left-behind status. The researchers obtained teachers’ reports of these students’ in-school behaviors over a 16-week period and their scores on the final examination, which occurred six weeks after they completed the questionnaire.

Students with more images of their future possibilities scored higher on the exam. For left-behind children, though, having possible selves was a double-edged sword, Oyserman said. Those with more future-self images were more likely to have behavior problems in school. But if they had strategies for attainment, they were less likely to have behavior problems, she said.

In the fourth study, 145 ninth-graders answered the same questions about future selves and strategies as the third study. Researchers also obtained their examination scores twice, once eight weeks after students reported on their future selves and strategies, and again a year later. Also at that later point, students were asked to report on their depressive symptoms using a standardized instrument.

The study revealed that those with more strategies to attain their possible selves scored better on their exams a year later, controlling for their prior test score, and showed that they were less likely to be depressed, Oyserman said.
Left-behind children

Prior research has shown that ‘left-behind’ children experience a higher rate of injury and illness compared to others. They face discrimination by teachers, their communities and the media, Oyserman said.
The children spend their week living at school. When they are at home, they are mostly unsupervised, and that carries risks, Oyserman said.

“Part of why I wanted to look at this particular group is that China is an enormous piece of the world both in terms of population and in terms of future trends, and Chinese parents, like any parents, are willing to sacrifice an awful lot in the hope that things will turn out better for their kids,” Oyserman said.

“Taken together, our results imply that while ‘left behind’ is a stereotyped identity that primes children to be accepting of the hand of fate in their lives, this does not mean that children who actually are ‘left behind’ disengage from school,” Oyserman concluded for the study. “On the contrary, they seem to redouble their efforts.”

The School of Psychology at Southwest University in China funded the studies.
More stories about: Psychology, Research
http://news.usc.edu/85905/children-overcoming-adversity-aim-high-but-have-a-plan/

Education and/or vocational training provide the best opportunity for moving individuals into success. Moi often says education is a partnership between the student, the teacher(s) and parent(s). All parties in the partnership must share the load. The student has to arrive at school ready to learn. The parent has to set boundaries, encourage, and provide support. Teachers must be knowledgeable in their subject area and proficient in transmitting that knowledge to students. All must participate and fulfill their role in the education process.

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University of Delaware study: Study Suggests Children’s Racial Stereotyping Can Be Reversed

10 Sep

Many educators have long recognized that the impact of social class affects both education achievement and life chances after completion of education. There are two impacts from diversity; one is to broaden the life experience of the privileged and to raise the expectations of the disadvantaged. Social class matters in not only other societies, but this one as well.

A few years back, the New York Times did a series about social class in America. That series is still relevant. Janny Scott and David Leonhardt’s overview, Shadowy Lines That Still Divide describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Social Class http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/15/national/class/OVERVIEW-FINAL.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 and http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/15/national/class/OVERVIEW-FINAL.html

Sarah Garland wrote in the Atlantic article, When Class Became More Important to a Child’s Education Than Race:

On a weekday afternoon in July, Jessica Klaitman pulled her 16-month-old daughter Hannah out of a stroller in the lobby of the New York Kids Club, a “child-enrichment center” with four classrooms, a dance studio, and gym space in Brooklyn Heights, N.Y.
Hannah was sleepy after a nap, but her face lit up as she was let loose with several other toddlers and their nannies. She grabbed some blocks and then headed to a table stocked with piles of a pink, play-dough-like sculpting material. For 45 minutes, the children wandered around wielding dolls and blocks, grabbing at each others’ toys and taking turns on a miniature slide. When time was up, they sang along with the “Clean-Up Song” and helped put away the mess.

A drop-in class at the New York Kids Club costs about $47, according to an employee. Hannah’s playgroup that day was free, but only because Klaitman, 40, and her husband, Jordan Small, 39, have enrolled their three children in package deals for classes in karate and preschool–which run about $650 per child for 17 once-a-week sessions. Klaitman estimates she’s dropped thousands of dollars at the club over the years, not to mention what she spends on the private preschool her oldest son attends, additional classes in Spanish and music elsewhere, and the family’s museum memberships.

The Klaitman-Smalls’ considerable investment in their children is becoming the norm for families like theirs who are in the top tiers of the country’s income distribution. The resources the affluent are pouring into their children are also driving a growing divide between academic outcomes of the children of the well-to-do and those of everyone else’s kids. That widening academic divide means that kids who are born poor and kids who are born rich are increasingly likely to stay that way once they reach adulthood….
Researchers say the expanding class gap in education is likely a byproduct of the country’s widening income inequality. There’s been an explosion in spending by well-to-do parents on their children: The amount has more than doubled in the last 30 years, according to work by Columbia University School of Social Work researchers Neeraj Kaushal and Jane Waldfogel and Katherine Magnuson of the University of Wisconsin.
Parents in the top quintile of income in the U.S. (households earning at least $102,000 in 2011, according to census data compiled by the Tax Policy Institute, a nonprofit research group) now spend more than double what parents in the second quintile (earning at least $62,000) spend on trips for their children-about $2,000 per year compared with $800, the Kaushal study found. They also spend significantly more on childcare, computers, books, and private-school tuition than their non-wealthy peers…. http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/08/when-class-became-more-important-to-a-childs-education-than-race/279064/
See, How do upper-class parents prepare their kids for success in the world? http://sandiegoeducationreport.org/talkingtokids.html

Moi wrote about the intersection of race and class in Michael Petrilli’s decision: An ed reformer confronts race and class when choosing a school for his kids. It is worth reviewing that post. https://drwilda.com/tag/class-segregation/ Lindsey Layton wrote in the Washington Post article, Schools dilemma for gentrifiers: Keep their kids urban, or move to suburbia?

When his oldest son reached school age, Michael Petrilli faced a dilemma known to many middle-class parents living in cities they helped gentrify: Should the family flee to the homogenous suburbs for excellent schools or stay urban for diverse but often struggling schools?

Petrilli, who lived in Takoma Park with his wife and two sons, was torn, but he knew more than most people about the choice before him. Petrilli is an education expert, a former official in the Education Department under George W. Bush and executive vice president at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a right-leaning education think tank.
He set out to learn as much as he could about the risks and benefits of socioeconomically diverse schools, where at least 20 percent of students are eligible for the federal free or reduced-price lunch program. And then he wrote about it….

Petrilli said he wanted his son to have friends from all backgrounds because he believes that cultural literacy will prepare him for success in a global society.
But he worried that his son might get lost in a classroom that has a high percentage of poor children, that teachers would be focused on the struggling children and have less time for their more privileged peers.

As Petrilli points out in the book, this dilemma doesn’t exist for most white, middle-class families. The vast majority — 87 percent — of white students attend majority white schools, Petrilli says, even though they make up just about 50 percent of the public school population.

And even in urban areas with significant African American and Latino populations, neighborhood schools still tend to be segregated by class, if not by race. In the Washington region, less than 3 percent of white public school students attend schools where poor children are the majority, according to Petrilli.
Gentrification poses new opportunities for policymakers to desegregate schools, Petrilli argues….

In the end, Petrilli moved from his Takoma Park neighborhood school — diverse Piney Branch Elementary, which is 33 percent low-income — to Wood Acres Elementary in Bethesda, where 1 percent of the children are low-income, 2 percent are black and 5 percent are Hispanic. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/schools-dilemma-for-urban-gentrifiers-keep-their-kids-urban-or-move-to-suburbia/2012/10/14/02083b6c-131b-11e2-a16b-2c110031514a_story.html

A University of Delaware study examines race perception.

Education News reported in Study Suggests Children’s Racial Stereotyping Can Be Reversed:

New research out of the University of Delaware has found that infants can be trained to undo the unconscious racial biases they were previously found to hold.

The findings come as part of an ongoing multi-country collaboration that has been conducted by Paul Quinn, professor of psychological and brain sciences at the University, for the last 10 years through the help of a National Institutes of Health grant. Working with researchers from Canada, France and China, the team has been exploring the ability of infants to categorize faces by race and gender.

Noting the amount of time that infants spent looking at photos of faces, Quinn observed that beginning at 3 months of age, children tend to prefer photos of faces that they typically see more often in their daily lives. In particular, babies enjoyed looking at photos of females who were of the same race as themselves.

As the infants approached 9 months of age, they could not only determine different racial categories, but also were less able to distinguish between individuals of lesser-known races. One example found Caucasian infants being able to clearly identify Caucasian faces, but not as likely to see Asian or African faces, reports Ellie Zolfagharifard for The Daily Mail.

“Our original thinking about the 9-month-old findings was that this process that we call ‘narrowing’ is based on visual perception, not any social bias,” Quinn said. “But then the question we asked was: Might these perceptual biases we see in infants be related to the social biases that we see in older kids, beginning at 3 or 4 years of age, and adults?

“And if they are, can we use a technique to reduce bias? As we tried to answer this question, we hit on the idea that if the perceptual and social biases are linked, we might be able to reduce the social bias by perceptual means.”
For the new study, scientists in China combined photos of Asian faces with that of African faces to make one single race. Some of the photos showed smiling individuals while other faces looked angrier. The images were then showed to groups of 4 and 6 year olds who identified the smiling faces as Asian and the severe faces as African, a group of people they were not used to seeing….

Quinn added that further research is needed to determine how long the effects last.
– See more at: http://www.educationnews.org/parenting/study-suggests-childrens-racial-stereotyping-can-be-reversed/#sthash.gnsep0nC.dpuf

Citation:

Individuation training with other-race faces reduces preschoolers’ implicit racial bias: a link between perceptual and social representation of faces in children
1. Wen S. Xiao1,2,
2. Genyue Fu1,
3. Paul C. Quinn3,
4. Jinliang Qin1,
5. James W. Tanaka4,
6. Olivier Pascalis5 and
7. Kang Lee1,2,*
Article first published online: 5 OCT 2014
DOI: 10.1111/desc.12241
© 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
Issue
Developmental Science
Volume 18, Issue 4, pages 655–663, July 2015

• Abstract
• Article
• References
• Cited By
View Full Article (HTML) Enhanced Article (HTML) Get PDF (399K)
Abstract
The present study examined whether perceptual individuation training with other-race faces could reduce preschool children’s implicit racial bias. We used an ‘angry = outgroup’ paradigm to measure Chinese children’s implicit racial bias against African individuals before and after training. In Experiment 1, children between 4 and 6 years were presented with angry or happy racially ambiguous faces that were morphed between Chinese and African faces. Initially, Chinese children demonstrated implicit racial bias: they categorized happy racially ambiguous faces as own-race (Chinese) and angry racially ambiguous faces as other-race (African). Then, the children participated in a training session where they learned to individuate African faces. Children’s implicit racial bias was significantly reduced after training relative to that before training. Experiment 2 used the same procedure as Experiment 1, except that Chinese children were trained with own-race Chinese faces. These children did not display a significant reduction in implicit racial bias. Our results demonstrate that early implicit racial bias can be reduced by presenting children with other-race face individuation training, and support a linkage between perceptual and social representations of face information in children.
View Full Article (HTML) Enhanced Article (HTML) Get PDF (399K)

Here is the press release from the University of Delaware:

New research finds a way to reverse children’s racial stereotyping

August 25, 2015 by Ann Manser

Lillian May Clark sits on the lap of her mother, Kimberly Clark, and looks at images of faces being shown to her by undergraduate research assistant Jennie Lowe. Credit: Evan Krape
New research by a University of Delaware psychological scientist and his collaborators across the globe has found a simple exercise that can undo the unconscious racial biases that young children have—biases that may begin to develop as early as infancy.

The findings are part of an ongoing, multi-country collaboration that has been conducted by Paul Quinn, professor of psychological and brain sciences at UD, for more than a decade. Funded by a National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant, Quinn works with researchers in Canada, France and China to explore how infants mentally classify faces by race and gender. This research has recently received attention in the New York Times and the Guardian.

Using an established technique of measuring how much time the babies spend looking at pictures of faces, Quinn has learned that 3-month-olds begin showing a visual preference for the categories—generally, female and the same race as themselves—that they see most often in their daily lives.
By 9 months of age, infants not only distinguish racial categories but also become less able to tell different individuals apart if they are members of a less-familiar race. For example, Caucasian infants can identify Caucasian faces as belonging to different individuals, but they are less likely to see Asian or African faces as distinct individuals.

“Our original thinking about the 9-month-old findings was that this process that we call ‘narrowing’ is based on visual perception, not any social bias,” Quinn said. “But then the question we asked was: Might these perceptual biases we see in infants be related to the social biases that we see in older kids, beginning at 3 or 4 years of age, and adults?

“And if they are, can we use a technique to reduce bias? As we tried to answer this question, we hit on the idea that if the perceptual and social biases are linked, we might be able to reduce the social bias by perceptual means.”

In this new study, published in July in the journal Developmental Science, Quinn and his collaborators in China used photos of African and Asian faces and morphed them together to create ambiguous images that looked equally African and Asian. Some of the faces had pleasant expressions, while others looked more severe.

When researchers showed the images to 4- to 6-year-olds in China, the children identified the happy faces as Asian—the category they were used to seeing—and the angry faces as African, a group they rarely saw in daily life.

The scientists’ next step was to see whether the children’s unconscious racial biases could be disrupted. They showed the youngsters five different African faces and gave each of the individuals a name, repeating the process until the children could identify each of the five faces by name.
When the children then looked at the happy and angry ambiguous-race photos again, their bias in favor of their own racial group had dropped significantly.

“This process of getting the kids to respond to the [five African] faces as individuals, not as a category, only takes 15-30 minutes, and it made a significant difference,” Quinn said. “It suggests that what is a social bias has [visual] perceptual components and that it can be disrupted.”

Many questions remain for further study, he said. Among them: After children go through the face-identification exercise and reduce their unconscious bias, how long does that effect last? Also, what aspect of the training is the critical ingredient? Is it mere exposure, or is it the act of individuation?
“This has caused us to rethink what’s going on” in the link between perception and social bias, Quinn said. “There are a number of avenues we want to explore.”

Research continues on infant perception

Another, related study that Quinn conducted in his lab at UD with babies from the Newark, Delaware, area has been published online by Developmental Science, with print publication expected in the future.
In this study, researchers worked with Caucasian babies to explore how and at what ages they began forming categories of people based on the racial characteristics of faces.
At 6 months, Quinn said, the infants were classifying faces into three groups—Caucasian, African and Asian. But just a few months later, they had grouped the African and Asian faces together into a single category.

“This was the surprise finding,” Quinn said. “At 9 months, they didn’t respond to the differences between the African and Asian categories, but instead they had two broad categories, ‘own race’ and ‘other race.’
“It doesn’t seem to matter to a Caucasian infant who has seen mostly Caucasian faces if a face is African or Asian. They only care that it’s not Caucasian. We think it might be a precursor to an initial ‘in group-out group’ differentiation of faces.
“This result suggests that perceptual and social proce ssing of faces may overlap even in infants.”
Again, the findings suggest other issues to explore. A current study is investigating whether infants have positive associations with faces of their own, familiar race and more negative associations with less familiar faces from other races.

All the research that Quinn and his collaborators have been conducting since their initial NIH grant in 2004 centers on category formation—a basic cognitive process in which very young babies begin mentally classifying objects and animals in a way that, for example, sets apart squares from triangles and cats from dogs. Extending that research to faces led to the findings that infants also categorize images of people by gender and race.

Explore further: Infants taught to maintain ability to distinguish between other-race groups

More information: “Individuation training with other-race faces reduces preschoolers’ implicit racial bias: a link between perceptual and social representation of faces in children.” Developmental Science, 18: 655–663. doi: 10.1111/desc.12241
Journal reference: Developmental Science

Often, schools are segregated by both race and class. Class identification is very important in education because of class and peer support for education achievement and the value placed on education by social class groups. Moi does not condemn Mr. Petrilli for doing what is best for his family because when the rubber meets the road that is what parents are supposed to do. His family’s situation is just an example of the intersection of race and class in education.

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Penn State study: Double standard in early sexual relationships

6 Sep

Maybe, because some parents may not know what is age appropriate for their attire, they haven’t got a clue about what is appropriate for children. There is nothing sadder than a 40 something, 50 something trying to look like they are twenty. What wasn’t sagging when you are 20, is more than likely than not, sagging now.

Kristen Russell Dobson, the managing editor of Parent Map, has a great article in Parent Map. In Are Girls Acting Sexy Too Young? https://www.parentmap.com/article/are-girls-acting-sexy-too-young Dobson says:

A 2003 analysis of TV sitcoms found gender harassment in nearly every episode. Most common: jokes about women’s sexuality or women’s bodies, and comments that characterized women as sex objects. And according to the 2007 Report of the American Psychological Association’s Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls, “Massive exposure to media among youth creates the potential for massive exposure to portrayals that sexualize women and girls and teach girls that women are sexual objects.”

Those messages can be harmful to kids because they make sex seem common — even normal — among younger and younger kids. In So Sexy So Soon: The New Sexualized Childhood and What Parents Can Do to Protect Their Kids, co-authors Diane E. Levin, Ph.D., and Jean Kilbourne, Ed.D., write that “sex in commercial culture has far more to do with trivializing and objectifying sex than with promoting it, more to do with consuming than with connecting. The problem is not that sex as portrayed in the media is sinful, but that it is synthetic and cynical.” http://www.parentmap.com/article/are-girls-acting-sexy-too-young

The culture seems to be sexualizing children at an ever younger age and it becomes more difficult for parents and guardians to allow children to just remain, well children, for a bit longer. Still, parents and guardians must do their part to make sure children are in safe and secure environments. A pole dancing fourth grader is simply unacceptable.

Science Daily reported in Unlike boys, girls lose friends for having sex, gain friends for making out:

Early adolescent girls lose friends for having sex and gain friends for “making out,” while their male peers lose friends for “making out” and gain friends for having sex, finds a new study that will be presented at the 110th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (ASA).

“In our sample of early adolescents, girls’ friendship networks shrink significantly after they have sex, whereas boys’ friendship networks expand significantly,” said Derek A. Kreager, the lead author of the study and an associate professor of sociology and criminology at Pennsylvania State University. “But what really surprised us was that ‘making out’ showed a pattern consistent with a strong reverse sexual double standard, such that girls who ‘make out’ without having sex see significant increases in friendships, and boys who engage in the same behavior see significant decreases in friendships.”

The study relies on data from the PROmoting School-community-university Partnerships to Enhance Resilience (PROSPER) longitudinal study, which tracked two cohorts of youth from 28 rural communities in Iowa and Pennsylvania from 2003 to 2007 when they were in sixth to ninth grade and 11 to 16-years-old. Students were surveyed in five waves: in the Fall of sixth grade and in the Spring of sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth grades. Kreager’s study focuses on 921 students in the second PROSPER cohort who completed in-home surveys that included measures of sexual behavior.

As part of the PROSPER study, students were asked to nominate their best or closest friends in the same grade. In order to identify changes in peer acceptance, Kreager and his colleagues considered how many friendship nominations participants received in each wave.

According to Kreager, in waves where they reported having sex, on average, girls experienced a 45 percent decrease in peer acceptance and boys experienced an 88 percent increase. On the other hand, in waves where they reported “making out” without having sex, on average, girls experienced a 25 percent increase in peer acceptance, while boys experienced a 29 percent decrease in peer acceptance.

“Our results are consistent with traditional gender scripts,” said Kreager. “Men and boys are expected to act on innate or strong sex drives to initiate heterosexual contacts for the purpose of sex rather than romance and pursue multiple sexual partnerships. In contrast, women and girls are expected to desire romance over sex, value monogamy, and ‘gatekeep’ male sexual advances within committed relationships. A sexual double standard then arises because women and girls who violate traditional sexual scripts and have casual and/or multiple sexual partnerships are socially stigmatized, whereas men and boys performing similar behaviors are rewarded for achieving masculine ideals.”

Kreager found that girls, who defy traditional gender scripts by having sex, lose both male and female friendships. In contrast, boys who defy gender scripts by “making out” without having sex mainly lose male friends.
“This pattern suggests that other boys are the peers that police social norms when it comes to masculinity, whereas girls receive strong messages about gender-appropriate sexual behavior from boys and girls,” Kreager explained. “It is not surprising that girls do not punish boys for ‘making out,’ as this behavior is rewarding for girls both socially and physically. However, there is somewhat of a paradox for boys stigmatizing girls who have sex because these boys are punishing girls for behavior that benefits boys both socially and sexually. We believe one reason for this is that only a small minority of boys have such sexual access, so those who do not have sex negatively define the girls who are having sex.”

While recent research that shows men and women are held to different standards of sexual conduct largely focuses on college “hook-up culture,” by studying early adolescents, Kreager was able to show that sexual double standards also affect youth who have only just reached sexual maturity…. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/08/150824064731.htm

Citation:

• Social Psychology Quarterly
• Vol. 72, No. 2, Jun., 2009
• The Sexual Double St…

The Sexual Double Standard and Adolescent Peer Acceptance

Derek A. Kreager and Jeremy Staff

Social Psychology Quarterly

Vol. 72, No. 2 (Jun., 2009), pp. 143-164

Published by: American Sociological Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25593915
Page Count: 22

Abstract

The belief that women and men are held to different standards of sexual conduct is pervasive in contemporary American society. According to the sexual double standard, boys and men are rewarded and praised for heterosexual sexual contacts, whereas girls and women are derogated and stigmatized for similar behaviors. Although widely held by the general public, research findings on the sexual double standard remain equivocal, with qualitative studies and early attitudinal surveys generally finding evidence of the double standard and more recent experimental vignette designs often failing to find similar results. In this study, we extend prior research by directly measuring the social status of sexually permissive youth. We use data collected from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health to relate adolescents’ self-reported numbers of sexual partners to a network measure of peer acceptance. Results suggest that the association between lifetime sexual partnerships and peer status varies significantly by gender, such that greater numbers of sexual partners are positively correlated with boys’ peer acceptance, but negatively correlated with girls’ peer acceptance. Moreover, the relationship between boys’ sexual behaviors and peer acceptance is moderated by socioeconomic origins; sexually permissive boys from disadvantaged backgrounds are predicted to have more friendships than permissive boys from more advantaged backgrounds. Our results thus support the existence of an adolescent sexual double standard and suggest that sexual norms vary by both gender and socioeconomic origins. http://www.jstor.org/stable/25593915?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

Here is the press release from the American Sociological Association:

Public Release: 24-Aug-2015 Unlike boys, girls lose friends for having sex, gain friends for making out
American Sociological Association

CHICAGO — Early adolescent girls lose friends for having sex and gain friends for “making out,” while their male peers lose friends for “making out” and gain friends for having sex, finds a new study that will be presented at the 110th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (ASA).

“In our sample of early adolescents, girls’ friendship networks shrink significantly after they have sex, whereas boys’ friendship networks expand significantly,” said Derek A. Kreager, the lead author of the study and an associate professor of sociology and criminology at Pennsylvania State University. “But what really surprised us was that ‘making out’ showed a pattern consistent with a strong reverse sexual double standard, such that girls who ‘make out’ without having sex see significant increases in friendships, and boys who engage in the same behavior see significant decreases in friendships.”

The study relies on data from the PROmoting School-community-university Partnerships to Enhance Resilience (PROSPER) longitudinal study, which tracked two cohorts of youth from 28 rural communities in Iowa and Pennsylvania from 2003 to 2007 when they were in sixth to ninth grade and 11 to 16-years-old. Students were surveyed in five waves: in the Fall of sixth grade and in the Spring of sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth grades. Kreager’s study focuses on 921 students in the second PROSPER cohort who completed in-home surveys that included measures of sexual behavior.

As part of the PROSPER study, students were asked to nominate their best or closest friends in the same grade. In order to identify changes in peer acceptance, Kreager and his colleagues considered how many friendship nominations participants received in each wave.

According to Kreager, in waves where they reported having sex, on average, girls experienced a 45 percent decrease in peer acceptance and boys experienced an 88 percent increase. On the other hand, in waves where they reported “making out” without having sex, on average, girls experienced a 25 percent increase in peer acceptance, while boys experienced a 29 percent decrease in peer acceptance.

“Our results are consistent with traditional gender scripts,” said Kreager. “Men and boys are expected to act on innate or strong sex drives to initiate heterosexual contacts for the purpose of sex rather than romance and pursue multiple sexual partnerships. In contrast, women and girls are expected to desire romance over sex, value monogamy, and ‘gatekeep’ male sexual advances within committed relationships. A sexual double standard then arises because women and girls who violate traditional sexual scripts and have casual and/or multiple sexual partnerships are socially stigmatized, whereas men and boys performing similar behaviors are rewarded for achieving masculine ideals.”

Kreager found that girls, who defy traditional gender scripts by having sex, lose both male and female friendships. In contrast, boys who defy gender scripts by “making out” without having sex mainly lose male friends.
“This pattern suggests that other boys are the peers that police social norms when it comes to masculinity, whereas girls receive strong messages about gender-appropriate sexual behavior from boys and girls,” Kreager explained. “It is not surprising that girls do not punish boys for ‘making out,’ as this behavior is rewarding for girls both socially and physically. However, there is somewhat of a paradox for boys stigmatizing girls who have sex because these boys are punishing girls for behavior that benefits boys both socially and sexually. We believe one reason for this is that only a small minority of boys have such sexual access, so those who do not have sex negatively define the girls who are having sex.”

While recent research that shows men and women are held to different standards of sexual conduct largely focuses on college “hook-up culture,” by studying early adolescents, Kreager was able to show that sexual double standards also affect youth who have only just reached sexual maturity.
“During early adolescence, peer evaluations of initial sexual behaviors and virginity loss are likely to have large and lasting impacts on later sexual adjustment,” Kreager noted.
###

Study co-authors include Jeremy Staff, an associate professor of sociology and criminology at Pennsylvania State University; Robin Gauthier, a post-doctoral fellow at REACH of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Eva S. Lefkowitz, a professor of human development and family studies at Pennsylvania State University; and Mark E. Feinberg, a research professor of health and human development at Pennsylvania State University.
About the American Sociological Association

The American Sociological Association, founded in 1905, is a non-profit membership association dedicated to serving sociologists in their work, advancing sociology as a science and profession, and promoting the contributions to and use of sociology by society.

The paper, “The Double Standard at Sexual Debut: Gender, Sexual Behavior and Early Adolescent Peer Acceptance,” will be presented on Tuesday, Aug. 25, at 2:30 p.m. CDT in Chicago at the American Sociological Association’s 110th Annual Meeting.

To obtain a copy of the paper; for assistance reaching the study’s author(s); or for more information on other ASA presentations, members of the media can contact Daniel Fowler, ASA Media Relations Manager, at (202) 527-7885 or pubinfo@asanet.org. During the Annual Meeting (Aug. 22-25), ASA Public Information Office staff can be reached in the on-site press office, located in the Hilton Chicago’s Boulevard Room B, at (312) 294-6616 or (914) 450-4557 (cell).

Papers presented at the ASA Annual Meeting are typically working papers that have not yet been published in peer reviewed journals.

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system. http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2015-08/asa-ubg081815.php

This society is setting up women and girls to make some personally destructive choices which have nothing to do with a liberating and healthy sexuality. Much of the culture is simply aimed at demeaning and trivializing women. Children of both sexes need to be urged toward education, training, and life experiences which grow them as responsible and caring people. They should be urged to make choices which benefit them and the society in which they live. Unfortunately, there are some who enter the world of whoredom because they are forced. There is a lot of information about human trafficking http://www.euronews.com/2010/07/02/un-targets-human-trafficking-for-prostitution/ No one in their right mind would honestly advocate that someone they care about was “in the life” or “on the game.” But if young women are going to voluntarily take the road of whoredom, then you need to sell yourselves for Goldman Sachs type $$$$$$$$$$. That is what Miley, Britney, Janet and the other pop tarts have done. Short of that, you might as well be walking the streets looking for a really nice car that isn’t leased so that you can become the next “Pretty Woman.”

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University of Chicago study: Parents’ views on justice affect babies’ moral development

2 Sep

Moi wrote in University of California, San Diego study: Lying parents tend to raise lying children:
Cheating is increasingly a concern in education. Some colleges in an attempt to curb academic dishonesty on campus are beginning to employ methods one has usually associated with Las Vegas casinos. Minnesota State University Mankato has an excellent newsletter article about academic dishonesty. Richard C. Schimming writes in Academic Dishonesty:

A recent survey found that 1/3 of all students admitted to cheating on an examination, 1/2 admitted to cheating on a class assignment, 2/3 admitted to cheating at least once during their college career, and 2/3 have seen classmates cheat on exams or assignments. Paradoxically, 3/4 of those in that survey believe that cheating is not justified under any circumstances. Finally, 1/2 of the students surveyed believe that the faculty of their university do not try to catch cheaters… http://www.mnsu.edu/cetl/teachingresources/articles/academicdishonesty.html

For some students, cheating starts early. By the time some kids reach college they have already established a pattern of cheating. ABC News has a good report, A Cheating Crisis in America’s Schools http://abcnews.go.com/Primetime/story?id=132376&page=1 https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/12/21/cheating-in-schools-goes-high-tech/ Apparently, kids are modeling what they learned at home.

Science Daily reported in Parents’ views on justice affect babies’ moral development:

Babies’ neural responses to morally charged scenarios are influenced by their parents’ attitudes toward justice, new research from the University of Chicago shows.

The study from Prof. Jean Decety and postdoctoral scholar Jason Cowell, which appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, sheds new light on the mechanisms underlying the development of morality in very young children.

“This work demonstrates the potential of developmental social neuroscience to provide productive, new and exciting directions for the investigation of moral development, by integrating neurobiology, behavior and the social environment,” said Decety, the Irving B. Harris Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology and Psychiatry and the College and director of the University of Chicago Child NeuroSuite.

The developmental neuroscientists found that strong individual differences in the perception of prosocial and antisocial behaviors are present in children as young as 12 to 24 months old–and that these differences are predicted by their parents’ sensitivity to justice. Moreover, parental cognitive empathy is linked to babies’ willingness to share.

“These novel and intriguing findings warrant further investigation to decipher what contributes to such early parent-child transmission of values, which may either be based on biological or socioenvironmental influences, or more likely a dynamic and complex developmental, interactional process between the two,” the authors wrote….
Parents answered questionnaires about their children and themselves to assess their dispositional empathy and sensitivity to justice.

In the current study, all children exhibited larger brain waves in response to prosocial scenes than antisocial ones. In addition, the children were more motivated to look at “good” characters than “bad” ones, as measured by eye tracking. These findings add to a growing body of knowledge demonstrating that children are able to distinguish between prosocial and antisocial behavior from a very early age…. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/09/150901100549.htm

Citation:

Parents’ views on justice affect babies’ moral development
Date: September 1, 2015

Source: University of Chicago

Summary:

Babies’ neural responses to morally charged scenarios are influenced by their parents’ attitudes toward justice, new research shows. The developmental neuroscientists found that strong individual differences in the perception of prosocial and antisocial behaviors are present in children as young as 12 to 24 months old–and that these differences are predicted by their parents’ sensitivity to justice. Moreover, parental cognitive empathy is linked to babies’ willingness to share.

Journal Reference:
1. Jason M. Cowell, Jean Decety. Precursors to morality in development as a complex interplay between neural, socioenvironmental, and behavioral facets. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2015; 201508832 DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1508832112

Here is the press release from the University of Chicago:

Parents’ views on justice affect babies’ moral development

By Susie Allen
August 31, 2015

Babies’ neural responses to morally charged scenarios are influenced by their parents’ attitudes toward justice, new research from the University of Chicago shows.

The study from Prof. Jean Decety and postdoctoral scholar Jason Cowell, which appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, sheds new light on the mechanisms underlying the development of morality in very young children.

Related Content

Neuroscientists identify brain mechanisms that predict generosity in children

“This work demonstrates the potential of developmental social neuroscience to provide productive, new and exciting directions for the investigation of moral development, by integrating neurobiology, behavior and the social environment,” said Decety, the Irving B. Harris Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology and Psychiatry and the College and director of the University of Chicago Child NeuroSuite.

The developmental neuroscientists found that strong individual differences in the perception of prosocial and antisocial behaviors are present in children as young as 12 to 24 months old—and that these differences are predicted by their parents’ sensitivity to justice. Moreover, parental cognitive empathy is linked to babies’ willingness to share.

“These novel and intriguing findings warrant further investigation to decipher what contributes to such early parent-child transmission of values, which may either be based on biological or socioenvironmental influences, or more likely a dynamic and complex developmental, interactional process between the two,” the authors wrote.
The 73 infants and toddlers who participated in the study watched brief animations depicting prosocial (e.g., sharing, helping) and antisocial (e.g., hitting, shoving) behavior while the authors monitored their eye movement and brain waves using electroencephalography, or EEG.

Following the animations, the developmental neuroscientists presented the babies with toys of the helping and hindering characters and observed their preferences based on reaching. The infants also played a sharing game.

Parents answered questionnaires about their children and themselves to assess their dispositional empathy and sensitivity to justice.

In the current study, all children exhibited larger brain waves in response to prosocial scenes than antisocial ones. In addition, the children were more motivated to look at “good” characters than “bad” ones, as measured by eye tracking. These findings add to a growing body of knowledge demonstrating that children are able to distinguish between prosocial and antisocial behavior from a very early age.

However, the study also suggests that by 1 or 2 years of age, some children perceive the difference between prosocial and antisocial behavior more strongly than others. Importantly, these neural differences also predicted infants’ behavior—the children who reached toward the prosocial character toy also exhibited the greatest neural differentiation between prosocial and antisocial behavior when watching the character animations.
“Precursors to morality in development as a complex interplay between neural, socioenvironmental and behavioral facets” is available online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The study was supported by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation.

Media Contact
Susan Allen
News Officer for Arts and Humanities
News Office, University Communications
sjallen1@uchicago.edu
(773) 702-4009
Reserved for members of the media.
– See more at: http://news.uchicago.edu/article/2015/08/31/parents-views-justice-affect-babies-moral-development?utm_source=newsmodule#sthash.yvi4tEKR.dpuf

Today’s children become tomorrow’s generals and captains of industry. Too many families lack a moral compass or a compass of any type. In fact, too many children are growing up in shells of what a family should be. Moi wrote about the culture in It’s the culture and the values, stupid. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/04/its-the-culture-and-the-values-stupid/
The next unnamed scandal will be formulated like a hurricane forms over the ocean. After all, it’s really all about ME. James Carville once said, “it’s the economy, stupid” when describing the key campaign issue in an election. Moi wants to paraphrase, “it’s the culture and the values, stupid.”

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©
http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©
http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

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