sexta-feira, 12 de junho de 2015

The Interpersonal Children Perspective – A study for CLIP Colégio Luso Internacional do Porto by Artur Victoria

Behavioral expectations or, in the language of the sociologist, roles may be laid out in an interlocking pattern which can be conceptualized as the social structure, but how are they actually learnt?
Learning has been seen very much as a part of the province of the psychologist.
What has the sociologist to say about learning that is of help to the teacher In beginning to answer these questions must be switched from looking at social structure to an examination of the manner in which people interact at a face-to-face or interpersonal level.
Once something has been understood of the way in which learning takes place in a model situation where two people interact, then the possibility exists of extending this process to socialization in all parts of the social structure and at all stages of the life cycle.
Basically, what has to be explained is how an individual indicates to another his definition of what social reality is in such a way that the other learns this version and makes it his own.
One useful model for examining the way in which socialization takes place at the interpersonal level is to use the idea of ‘feed-back’. This concept may be applied to the way in which two persons steer each other as they interact with one another.
Let us take as an example a teacher in a primary school. She has expectations of herself in her role as teacher and of the behavior of the children aged, say, seven in her class. Her pupils likewise have expectations of their teacher and are willing to imitate or to obey her in order to learn what they take to be socially acceptable behavior. They may be willing, and this is important, either because they value their teacher or because they see her as powerful enough to insist that they do as she wishes.
In either case they interpret the cues that the teacher feeds back to them consequent upon any action that she observes or knows them to have made. The teacher signals to them by a nod or a smile that to throw papers into the waste paper basket is valued behavior; it meets the value of tidiness which she wishes to teach to her pupils. But she may also indicate to them by a from or by words of disapproval that to throw paper darts even into the waste paper basket is not acceptable; it contradicts the value of orderliness upon which she puts great emphasis and which she hopes will become a valued part of the social reality that she will recreate in her pupils.
A point worth noting is that the range of behavior tolerated in any role is usually quite wide. There are strict and less strict, tidy and less tidy teachers.
Because of this each individual has some chance to make, rather than just to take, his own role. When one remembers the very large number of positions that anyone person has to fill at any point in his life – for example, son, customer, holiday-maker, adolescent and so on – it is clear that there is considerable room for individuality in the way in which interpretations of each role are combined.
Social devices do, however, exist to restrict the range of tolerated behavior in certain positions.
Thus, many schools insist that their pupils wear uniforms that ensure that they are highly visible and cannot, therefore, easily deviate from the behavior desired by the school authorities.

quarta-feira, 10 de junho de 2015

The Future of Humanity – Educating Our Children – A study by Artur Victoria for CLIP Colegio Luso Internacional do Porto

The recognized divisions in the life cycle are sometimes known as age grades and very often important ceremonies mark the transition from one age grade to the next. 

The rites that mark the passage from being seen as a child to being seen as a young man or woman have been investigated by anthropologists in many societies. 

Such rites are very visible and often marked by physical scarring or the subsequent wearing of different clothes. In this way all will know just how anyone may be expected to behave and how in turn they should behave towards those they meet. 

In our own society there is much difficulty in knowing when transitions from one age grade to the next do occur. 

When those in mourn wore black for a year after their bereavement all knew who were to be treated with consideration as widows.

The problem of knowing just what role a person is playing is particularly difficult in the case of the transition from childhood to adolescence and from adolescence to adulthood. Thus, children become adults at different ages along different dimensions. 

A child ceases to pay half are on the railways at fourteen, is an adult as far as driving a car is concerned at seventeen, but may not vote till eighteen, or marry without parental consent till eighteen. 

In the last case, however, the age of adulthood is sixteen in other countries, which once again points up the differences that exist between societies in the ages at which a child becomes an adult. 

There are big differences in the social definition of the word ‘precocious’ between societies and in its application to various dimensions of behavior.

There are some positions and roles which cannot, or cannot easily, be refused. Those filling these positions must behave as is expected of them. 

A very clear example is provided by the sex role. In every known society members must either be male or female and for physiological reasons it is difficult, though not impossible, to pass from one sex to the other. 

Another example, based on social rather than physical considerations, is that in a capitalist society a baby cannot avoid being born to parents who belong either to the middle or to the working class. 

In societies where social strata have other foundations than class a somewhat similar situation exists and babies are born to be sons of a ruling class or daughters of peasants and so on. 

Early, or indeed any, movement away from this inherited position is rare, though possible through the process of adoption. 

A final example, relates to roles associated with color of skin; one is born black, yellow or white and in contemporary though not in all societies or even perhaps in all parts of society, certain implications of this accident of birth are hard to escape. 

Such roles are termed ascribed by sociologists. 

They may be contrasted with roles which are not socially compulsory, but which may be achieved if one is able and so desires. Thus a man is ascribed maleness, but achieves the position of husband.

The future opportunities in life, or in the terms used here, the possible pathways through the social structure open to an individual, are largely determined by the nature of the social positions into which he is put willy-nilly. In other words the roles that he may achieve are in many cases constrained by his roles. 

In our society, though this is perhaps not so true of socialist societies, boys have more chance of becoming engineers or bus drivers than do girls, who in their turn are more likely to work as librarians or typists. 

There is also a greater probability that children born into the middle class will achieve an occupation of higher status than boys and girls of working-class parents. 

Basically these two examples draw our attention to the manner in which the social structure may be seen as providing tracks or pathways through life from which it is very difficult, though not impossible, to deviate.

terça-feira, 9 de junho de 2015

The Children’s Social Class – A study from Artur Victoria to the begining of CLIP Colégio Luso Internacional do Porto

Wealth can be inherited and, despite death duties, some inequality of income perpetuated. A high income enables parents to give to their children the advantages that money can buy. It is a great help to a child to live in pleasant surroundings, be provided with educational toys, to go to a private school with a high staffing ratio, to receive stimulating experiences such as foreign travel in adolescence, and to have the entry into the ‘right circle’.
The family not only transmits material benefits to its offspring, but also passes on some of the more indefinable and immaterial aspects of social class.

The child undergoes social experiences of power and prestige upon which his ideas of class are built.

The ways in which his parents treat others and are treated by them give him the clues as to how he should later deal with his superiors and inferiors in class position.

Children of primary school age seem to mix very freely with children who to adults appear to be obviously of another social class. In rather the same way they ignore such adult caste boundaries as color in choosing their playmates. In both cases, however, it appears that they recognize that there are differences but do not know the social customs associated with these differences.

Each social class has its own particular way of life. Many examples can be given of the differences between the middle and the working class. What is considered right behavior varies; for example, each social class treats its women in a different way. Table manners and what is eaten and drunk vary greatly. It is possible to view each class as having a culture of its own.

Strictly these ways of life can be seen as sub-cultures of the overall national culture.

Each subculture will entail a separate pattern of socialization very different in some respects from that undergone by the children in the families of another social class. These sub-cultures are characterized most obviously by the differing outward behavior, such as the drinking of tea at the evening meal instead of water, or the watching of a game of soccer instead of the playing of a game of golf. But it will be shown in this section that at a deeper level there are differences even in the basic personality patterns and modes of thought found in the social classes.

The working-class mode of infant care was characterized by a pattern of indulgence led to a lack of self-discipline in older working-class children and adults. 

These very different ways of socialization led to markedly different patterns of personality. The working class does not control their basic psychological drives in the same way as the middle class does. The working class tended to extremes.

When money was available, they over-ate and overheated their rooms. They used aggressive action much more often, and this was particularly so with regard to sex.
These ways of behavior are approved as normal among the working class, whereas the middle class directed the identical drives into channels that were socially approved in their sub-culture.

Working-class aggression become middle-class initiative; the same psychological drive can take the form in a working-class child of actually striking a teacher and in the middle-class child of hard work leading to good school marks that would earn him the name of ‘teacher’s pet’.
What evidence is there for similar personality differences?

The general population and the broad patterns of indulgence might be expected to lead to the two opposing personality types. 

The initiative and self-discipline typical of the middle class can be traced back to the pattern of middle-class infant care foundations lay partly in the early patterns imposed with regard to feeding habits and toilet training and in the way the mother tried to love her child out of wrongdoing.

The differences by social class that were noted in the techniques of socialization used in early childhood were reinforced by the changed methods that were suitable for the child at the age of seven. The parental attitudes to their child’s play, his complaints about school and the expression of sorrow after being angry towards him.

Therefore, although extremes in type of personality cannot be assigned outright to the broad bands that make up the working and the middle classes, yet it approximate descriptions of the basic personality found among many in the middle class and among certainly a large proportion of the lower working class. 

In between these social classes it seems likely that there is a continuum with the basic personality tending towards one or other of the extremes according to the social class being considered.

The teacher, who is more often than not from the middle class, has to deal mainly with children from the working class and may well find that one of the main demands put upon him, if he is to achieve success, is the adjustment that he must make in order to teach children, the majority of whom have a very different pattern of personality from his own.

Neither pattern is deviant in any moral sense; both were formed through the normal process of social class learning, and within each broad pattern there are very many individual differences of personality.