Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Nurturing: The key to success
by Lankamp, Ellen, M.A., Aquinas Institute of Theology, 2006, 73; 1456228
Abstract (Summary)

This study was done using Content Analysis. This is a technique that allows the researcher to indirectly look at human behavior, by examining their communications through interviews with people in the field of childcare, education and early childhood programs. This is especially true in terms of considering child-rearing practices in the home and their impact on school performance so schools were surveyed in order to present a clear picture of nurturance in early childhood. According to Fraenkel and Wallen, (2000) "...content analysis as a methodology can be used in any context which the researcher desires a means of systematizing and (often) quantifying information that is not previously organized to suit the researcher's purpose." In this study there is a direct correlation between the development of the brain and nurturing. Through analysis of literature there is a solid link between a well-nurtured child and a successful student, as the research will show. To get a clear picture of where nurturing begins to play an important part, research looks at a developing fetus and the way it responds to the mother's heartbeat, measuring the responses that frightened or caused the fetus alarm. Then, with the help of rhesus monkeys, science was able to link nurturing to a serotonin (a hormone) linked-gene. When they examined a small monkey with poor social skills, often fighting, short tempered, a social outcast, they also knew the care the young monkey received was poor and lacked nurturing qualities. The scientist discovered that this serotonin-linked gene in the monkey was short in length. By contrast, a young monkey that had been nurtured, displayed a control of his temper, was able to handle stressful situations and was socially accepted, had a longer serotonin-linked gene. This same serotonin-linked gene is found in humans. By observing the way the brain develops from prenatal to early childhood, this study shows the importance of nurturing for healthy 'wiring' of the brain as it passes through the different stages of development. Research also shows the damaging affect of neglect on the developmental process. The strongest influence on the developing human brain is the care-taking relationship in early infancy and early childhood. Research shows that when this relationship includes nurturing, rich experiences and attention, the brain develops to its fullest potential, allowing the individual to become a happy, healthy child, and adult. The parent's role is crucial in supplying the nurturing relationship, fundamental to healthy growth. Teachers and schools share in the responsibility to offer nurturing classrooms and schools, where the students can experience a rich academic environment that will allow him/her to develop to their highest potential. When nurturing parents and schools work together, they create the positive learning experiences that will allow their students to achieve academic success. With their high school diploma in hand, they will be equipped to pursue higher academic learning and career goals.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Winkle, Carol
Commitee:
School: Aquinas Institute of Theology
School Location: United States -- Missouri
Source: MAI 46/06M, Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Preschool education, Developmental psychology, Families & family life, Personal relationships, Sociology
Keywords:
Publication Number: 1456228
ISBN: 9780549679707