Consider your virtual child at age 11 years with her/his skills, abilities, preferences, personality and areas of difficulty across all domains of development and address the following three questions:
1. What aspects of development are your priorities for the following school year? Refer to your child’s characteristics and explain your reasons for determining that these are the most important aspects on which to focus at this point in his/her development. (approx. 500 words)
2. What do you think you as a parent, could do to support your child’s development in these aspects of development? (approx. 500 words)
3. What do you think the school could do to support you and your child’s development in the priorities listed above? Provide clear guidelines for school support that are based on relevant developmental theory and research. Specific details of school curriculum are not required. (approx. 1000 words)
In relation to each of the questions, support your discussion by referring to relevant developmental theory and research. Use the textbook, lectures, readings and independent research to locate relevant information.
Question One (500 words)
• This should be your brief introduction, giving an overview of your whole child and discussing strengths and weaknesses.
• However you should EXPLICITLY state the priorities for next year’s development in this section
• Consider prioritising 3-4 aspects
• Justify why these aspects need prioritising
• Apply theories and research specifically to your child to explain his/her development
• Give a profile that’s based on weaknesses, strengths, interests etc. If you develop a particular interest in a child, what will happen?
• Prioritise the areas that are behind, but also think about the strengths
• Think about adolescence/transitions in development – students will be in a schooling transition
• Don’t pathologise normalcy
• You can’t cover everything but you can respond to the child’s individuality
• Compare with age normative experiences
• Consider the sources of development
Question Two (500 words)
• Use developmental theories and research to provide evidence for what parents could do to promote optimal development for the prioritised characteristics
Question Three (1000 words)
• identifying the features of the best possible (but realistic) school context for your individual child
• Make recommendations or guidelines (supported by research evidence) for what parents and schools can do for your individual child.
• Might or might not include brief specific strategies or activities to illustrate the guidelines.
• Use articles that provide evidence for the guidelines you suggest
The three parts of the Assessment Task should fit together to create a unified whole. Headings can be used to identify the three parts.
Brief introductions and conclusions are necessary. Do not include an introduction/conclusion paragraph for each section, rather an introductory/conclusion sentence or two.
Virtual Child at 11 years
• Mia is very verbally adept and witty, and enjoys jokes, stories and riddles
• Mia is able to concentrate longer on tasks than at age 8, although she has occasional lapses
• Mia does not enjoy art class and resists any of your attempts to get her involved in any arts and crafts or home repair and building project
• Mia has a tendency to overreact to little problems with friends and get into arguments. A friend suggests this might be making Mia prone to anxiety or depression or affecting her schoolwork
• Mia is in grade-level math, and sometimes gets stuck on problems. Mia seems to dread the story problems the most and gives up pretty quickly if she can’t figure out the correct procedure
• Mia is kind of a tomboy, and says she wants to ride her bike to the school grounds after school. She also wants to go on weekends and hang out there with one or two friends. She likes to play whiffle ball or basketball with the neighborhood boys and one or two other girl-friends
• Mia is underachieving in school – not putting forth her best effort, and not seeking out much help from the teacher
• Mia is really advancing in dance. Mia’s dance studio director recommends joining the Dance Competition team as a way of advancing faster This means traveling to dance conventions in neighboring cities so Mia wouldn’t have enough time for serious competitive play in other sports
• Mia is continuing to be a strong reader, and always seems to have a fiction book she is reading
• For her 11th birthday, Mia wants a handheld multi-entertainment system that coordinates with the home stereo and TV.
• Over the summer, Mia wants to earn more money than the usual weekly allowance because she wants to save for a cool new bike. You come up with a list of major chores that she can work on during the summer, such as pruning the bushes, washing the car, painting the fence, etc, and agree to pay her the prevailing minimum wage. You think this will be a good experience (if she will stick with it).
• Toward the end of 5th grade, the school began to transition the kids to middle school. admin This included registering for 6th grade classes, a trip to the middle school to meet the 6th grade core teachers (English & Social Studies combined classes), and a tour of the school. Mia is very excited about the transition, but nervous about being a “scrub”.
• Mia is talking a lot during the early part of the summer about going to 6th grade. There are several urban legends about what happens to 6th graders. Mia is afraid she’ll be forced to drink toilet water or smoke cigarettes in the bathroom. You laugh because there were very similar legends when you were in middle school! You reassure Mia that none of these things will happen.
Some highlights of the 5th grade report card (the one that is being sent on to middle school with Mia’s portfolio of writing samples, and standardized test scores) were as follows:
Consistently works cooperatively in groups, consistently respects rights and property of others, and consistently demonstrates appropriate peer social interaction.
“Demonstrates strength” in all areas of reading, and in spelling and “appropriate for grade level” in writing.
In the comments section the teacher wrote: Sometimes Mia can become quite upset with herself or others, particularly in stressful situations, and needs help calming down.
“Demonstrates strength” in the areas of speaking and listening and in content knowledge of social studies and science.
“Appropriate for grade level” in the areas of mathematical problem solving, understanding of data, number concepts, graphical applications, and arithmetic computation.
“Requires additional support” in the area of art.
“Demonstrates strength” in the area of music.
Usually works independently, listens attentively and follows directions, and consistently follows classroom rules.
• Even though it is still the middle of summer, you shop for school supplies and some cool school clothes.
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