Socioemotional development in childhood and adolescence
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Brain development from conception to early adulthood
3- and 4-year-old children tend to describe themselves concretely, using observable descriptors, emotions and attitudes. Preschoolers often use possessions to describe themselves.
By age 7, self-concept becomes increasingly abstract with trait-like psychological construct descriptor (e.g. popular / smart)
Between 3 to 5 years of age,selective prosocial behaviour begins.
Instrumental aggression typically appear at about 1 year of age, but increases until age 4, and is considered an important step in development. By age 4, young children have developed the self control to express their desires with words.
Young children are often overoptimistic when considering their capacities, possibly due to little social comparison and constant positive feedback.
Gender stability occurs. Consistently from age 3, young children will tend to choose same-sex playmate and toys / activities associated with their sex.
Gender identity occurs at age 2
Gender constancy is achieved close to 8 years of age. This is also when children start to recall information that contradicts their gender schemas.
Social comparison increases in middle childhood, affecting global and specific self-esteem. Reflected appraisals shape self-concept and self-esteem, and behaviour become more congruent with self-concept.
By middle childhood, self-concept focuses on competencies and personality traits rather than specific behaviours, including negative traits. Additionally, self-concept differentiates. Brain scans (temporal, parietal and frontal activation) suggest that self-concept becomes more complex and differentiated with age. (MPFC and TPJ)
Adolescents identify with their ideal selves, before eventual adjustment to actual self. Situational inconsitencies in behaviour is confusing to young adolescents' self-concept, and ultimately causes more negative affect.
In middle adolescence, awareness of situational variability in behaviour becomes evident.
Global self-esteem declines at about 11 years of age.
Global self-esteem reaches its lowest point around 13 years of age before starting to rise. Depression rates rise in early adolescence, and self-harm behaviours tend to emerge around 13 years of age.
Delinquency declines in late adolescence
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