Human Behavior in the Social Environment (SWK 5223)

A course at the University of Oklahoma Anne and Henry Zarrow School of Social Work taught by Carrie Jankowski, MSSW, LCSW

Author: Changing One Issue at a Time

Presentation over Census Tract 1059.06

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Community Intervention Presentation-1

Blog Post 12

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Prompt: Regarding the Mindfulness Practice homework assignment, please reflect on that process and share its impact: positive, negative, or neutral. How could you use this in your own life or how could it benefit your clients?

As we discussed in class closure last week, please state 2 things that you are taking away from this course in Human Behavior and the Social Environment.

Response:

Part 1-It was not the first time to be exposed to the Mindfulness Practice since I currently work in Social Work, however I find the practice itself helpful in the line of practice. I currently have print outs of reminding myself to take a minute or so to clear my mind and just ‘exist’ rather than constantly on the go. It’s helped me to have clearer thoughts and to gather myself mentally before beginning a new work task or even socializing with my friends after a long work day.

Part 2- I am taking away the importance of seeing a client as a person and to see their environment. I am also applying the concepts of how a person’s childhood and current stage of life has shaped them into the person they are (whether that is healthy or unhealthy) in order to understand why they function the way they function.

Blog Post 11

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Prompt:

  • Share 2 changes/additions you made to your website (note if they were peer suggested or your own ideas) and explain your reasoning behind it. If you did not make any changes, please state as such.
  • Explain the relationship between stress, physical health, and mental health as it relates to subjective well-being as concretely evidenced by the text.

Response:

  • My peer asked that I add additional information to my About Me section, which I did since that section only had my educational information that did not include any personal information. I also thought it would help me be more approachable to clients if they saw my website in order to view me as a ‘Regular’ person. I also change my Home Page feed to include three columns of my Posts instead of two columns as I previously had due to having several posts to my site. I thought it would be easier to view with more access to view multiple posts at once.
  • A person’s well-being has many intersections that combine to add to the overall well-being of someone. When a person has stress, the internal systems of a person’s body uses the energy allowed for the internal systems to compensate for the fight or flight response a person experiences when they are stressed (Broderick and Blewitt). This pull of energy from the body to satisfy the rest of the body damages the physical health of the person. When a person is constantly stressed and their physical health begins to decline, you will notice a mental health decline as well since the person is aware that their body is not the same. If a person is able to manage their stress, then their physical and mental health will begin to recover from the lack of energy it needs to return to a healthy and positive state (Broderick and Blewitt).

Reference

Broderick, P. C., & Blewitt, P. (2014). The life span: Human development for helping professionals. Harlow: Pearson Education.

Blog Post 10

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Prompt: Part 1: Give one example of your own thinking at one or more points in your life that reflect the following: dualism, multiplicity, and relativism. Part 2: What are two marker events that could help a young adult to develop into their current level of thinking?

Part 1: In my teenage years, I knew it was wrong to have a friend who was openly racist to half of my family members and a part of me, but I knew it was right for me to have at least one friend in High School. I struggled with the dualism aspect of my postformal thoughts. When I was an Senior in High School, I did not want to trust that my mother was right when she gave me feedback on my bachelor degree choice, in this case I displayed a form of multiplicity. This is because I did not want to trust that she could be right since I valued her opinion only to a certain degree, whereas I valued my paternal grandmother’s opion higher, which of course both people wanted me to explore different paths. When I entered the workforce, I knew it would be in my best interests to be respectful to not just other people, but to other people’s opinions/values/beliefs that were different from my own. In this part, I learned how to balance relativism. 

Part 2: One example of a young adult’s level of thinking is motivated to change, is when they are faced with the aspect of becoming independent from his/her parent(s) or to continue as their parent(s) dependent offspring. A second example is when a young adult discovers he/she will be a parent in a few months, the mindset of that individual changes to either prepare and accept the reproduction or to reject and isolate themselves from the offspring.

Blog Post 9

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Prompt: Referring to the peer review process for student websites, please state three changes you would recommend for your peer’s website and justify reasons for those changes.
Citing the text for specific supportive evidence, name one positive aspect and one negative aspect that influenced your adolescent development.

Response to Part 1: First recommendation, add some vocational and person information to your ‘About Me’ section on Website due to being able to self-reflect on your accomplishments and to be allow the perspective employer the opportunity to talk about non-related work subjects to gauge your personality. Second recommendation, adding the class website/blog site would be a great way to connect your Blog Post work to your site in order to show the perspective employer your active involvement with your class. Third recommendation, if you add a tab for your Blog Posts and direct your Blog Posts there, you seem more organized with your website to your perspective employer, as well as giving you the option to add articles/materials to your website page on the main screen.

Response to Part 2: A positive aspect that influenced my adolescent development was due to my mother’s insistence that I did not work a job until I was 18 years of age in order to focus on my academics and applications for college, which according to the Leisure and Work development, my mother improved my academic success and did not enable me to have misconduct in school with my behavior or addictions to substances as research has shown this to be possible effects to adolescents working while in high school. A negative aspect that influenced my adolescent development was the lack of a Peer Network since I did not have positive social group or peers to interact with since the only friend/peer I had was a known racist drug addict in the school. This caused my relations to the friend to be negative and my self-image to be impacted since I associated with him publicly, regardless of my high academic record.

Blog Post 8

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Prompt: Reflecting on our mid-term class self-assessment and mutual problem solving exercise, name at least one thing that YOU will do for the rest of the semester in this course to contribute to your personal learning experience and at least one thing that you will contribute to the collaborative learning experience.

Response: Personally-The material at the beginning of the semester was not as dense and dry as it currently is, which made reading it easier. However, as we have progressed in the book, the chapter have evolved to be even harder for me to digest, which causes me to procrastinate the actual reading. So, the one thing I will change for the rest of the semester is resorting back to reading the material at the beginning of the week and completing the objectives for the chapter at the beginning of the week.

Collaborative: For me, I need to be more acceptable to what my cohorts offer to the class discussion/thought/opinion on the subject matter. I have noticed that I will sometimes disregard specific cohort’s thoughts when they begin to speak. I know I shouldn’t do this and it’s something that has recently started to happen, so the perfect time for me to address this shift is now!

Blog Post 7

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Prompt: Reflecting on specific gender messages in your culture, clearly name 2 messages that are restrictive and 2 that inspire inclusivity. Cite at least one supporting example from the text as evidence for your ideas.

Response: Inclusivity inspiration comes from aggression and lack of popularity of that individual. Acceptance comes from behaving as the roles of the gender for their group, such as the males being strong and athletic and the females being competent with knowledge of things and pretty. Males are more acceptable to being rejected by the society if they are feminine, but females who behave in masculine ways are more likely to be accepted by their peers since they are seen as being motivated, whereas the males are seen as being weak.

When adolescents are discovering their interests and peer relations, they often times form cliques and they associate their acceptance into the clique as a part to form their identity. It is important for the individual to be accepted to their group since it gives them a sense of belonging and peers to relate their own self to. When a individual struggles with being accepted into a clique and popularity, he/she can experience rejection-withdraw, rejection-aggression, and neglect with having all negative outcomes for that individual by lack of popularity to find the clique he/she belongs to.

Blog Post 6

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Prompt: Referencing the text, name 2 positive outcomes and 2 negative outcomes that come from visual electronic media use in childhood. Also referencing the text/research, if you were working with a parent who needed guidance on screen use for children, what information might you share?

 

Response: Positive outcomes from visual electronic media use in childhood would be helping children when they are older they are able to retain more knowledge and have more access to more information; their logical thinking skills to characterize pieces of information that is relevant to a problem situation and how the pieces of information is relevant to each other. Negative outcomes would be attention difficulties and temperament differences in infants and toddlers before the age of 3. Research also shows that the content of the visual media is important since shorter programs are better than longer programs that help with the attention difficulties for infants/toddlers. If the content is violent then that affects the temperament of the child versus smooth programs that have a calming effect. Violent content would be considered fast changing scenes in a program that had a lot of noise and motion. Lastly, research was conducted over how children absorbed the educational programs over a 4 week span that did not show any change in a child’s ability for word recognition. However when a different group of children were presented by their caregiver on visually pointing out words over a 4 week span and personally interacting with the child, the children were able to recognize the word appropriately. Studies show that physical interaction with children at an early age improve their cognitive development better than visual media stimulation.

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Prompt: Examining the 4 parenting styles as highlighted in the chapter, name one character from today’s pop culture/society that depicts a specific parenting style and describe/cite 4 identifying characteristics as referenced in the text to support your selection.

*Spoiler Alert*

Response: Gemma Teller-Morrow from Sons of Anarchy utilizes the Authoritarian Style in her parenting of her son, Jax Teller, in the Sons of Anarchy series.

Firstly, Gemma did not encourage Jax’s individual assertiveness in the first half of the show with his viewpoint on what the MC (Motorcycle Club) should stand for, which went back to the reason for why the club was formed, as his father, John Teller, wrote about in his book. Instead, she put her husband, Clay Morrow, in charge of keeping his Vice President, Jax, in line by not expanding their business outside of guns when Jax brought the idea of a different venue to generate money for the MC.

Secondly, She also does not communicate effectively with Jax, which can be seen in her manner of using Jax’s oldest son’s mother, Wendy, to put an idea in Jax’s head or even through Jax’s wife, Tara, by consciously putting an idea or thought into her mind in order that she would bring it up to Jax. For example, when Gemma put it in Tara’s mind that she deserved to know what her relationship with Jax entailed since he needed to focus on the MC instead of her (Tara’s problems), where in fact Gemma was concerned with Jax’s relationship with Tara and wanted to know what their relationship was.

Thirdly, Gemma did her best to restrict Jax’s emotional expressiveness and self-assertive behaviors because she did not want him following in his father, John Teller, footsteps since her and Clay gained up on John Teller and killed him. She wanted Jax to follow in Clay Morrow’s steps instead in order to keep him close to her and depend on her for guidance and connections. She also enjoyed being in control of his life in the MC, rather than allowing him to come to her for advice.

Lastly, She would often state “Because I said so.” in her explanations for why she wanted something done by Jax when she asked for him to do something. She would also use these excuse and form of power assertion when he first became a Father and did not want him losing focus on the MC since Tara had also came back to town at the beginning of the series.

Blog Post 4

Prompt: Reflecting on the New York Longitudinal Study (1977) of behavioral traits of infants, how might the effectiveness of caregiving behaviors be different for children with each temperament (name and address 3 traits specifically)? How could that affect level of attachment between caregiver/parents and child?

 

Response: If a caregiver is not attentive to a child’s needs when they display that need, then that neglect can have a negative impact on that child’s overall temperament, which will be explained in three traits.

One trait can be the Approach/Withdrawal, in which the child has an immediate response/reaction to a new experience that is either accepted or rejected. If a child’s caregiver has been encouraging and seen as a secure anchor for that child, then the child accepts or approaches the new experience rather than reject or withdraw.

The second trait will be the Adaptability trait, where a child either adapts in a short, moderate, or long time, or if that child withdrawals completely. It is positive for children to have a short time length to adapt versus long time length to adapt in order to meet that chid’s developmental needs. If a child takes a long time to adapt to something or withdrawals from something, then that child is not accustomed to experiencing new things and/or has not developed his/her proper cognitive development skills to understand he/she is experiencing something.

The third trait will be the Intensity trait, of which the energy the child is shown in the expressed mood. If a child is able to show energy or interest in something, then that child has been exposed and encouraged to express interests in things. If a child is not able to do that, then that child has not been encouraged and/or neglected to the point where the child has no interest in expressing an emotion.

After reading these three traits, Approach/Withdrawal, Adaptability, and Intensity, it can be noticeable on how these traits can be seen in positive and negative attachment levels. Remember, babies rely on their caregivers to manage their emotions.

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