Cross Cultural Studies

1169 Words5 Pages
Culture is reflected in attitudes that people have and the way they interact with children. It is manifested in parents' beliefs, values and goals for their children and these affect that way in which children develop. In order to look at the role of culture on development cross-cultural studies assist in this. In cross-cultural studies culture is compared with one or more other cultures, information about the other culture is provided, to examine the role of culture in children's development (Kim, 2009). This comparison provides information about the degree to which children's development is similar or universal across cultures or the degree to which it is culture-specific that children's development needs. Many Western cultures, such as the…show more content…
This is seen with a girl named Sonya, aged sixteen, a Japanese American girl who was upset due to her family's reaction to her having a white American boyfriend. Sonya's parents refused to meet him and threatened to disown her numerously, her brothers even threatened to beat him up. Sonya's grades declined from above average in middle school. Her parents started putting sanctions against dating Whites when they were growing up and were even legally forbidden from marrying outside the Japanese group. Sonya's brothers grew up valuing their ethnic and solidarity and Sonya dating a white guy made them felts like she was "selling out" her ethnic group. Sonya had different cultural values to her family and thus the conflict impacted her school performance as she is very much part of her community (being her family) and although she is an individual her family still impacts her dearly. The family clearly was displaying ethnocentrism as they believed that their cultural practices were correct and should be followed no matter what and hostility to Sonya's boyfriend was due to their ethnocentric approach at things (Santrock,…show more content…
Instead human mental functioning, even when carried out by an individual acting solely, is greatly social or rather sociocultural because it includes socially evolved and socially planned cultural tools (J.V. Wertsch, & Tulviste, P. , 1992). Furthermore Vygotsky believed that culture is the result of social life and human social activity. By raising the question of cultural development of behaviour the social plane of development is directly introduced (Vygotsky, 1978). Culture creates special forms of behaviour, changes the functioning of up the mind, and constructs new stories in the developing system of human behaviour. Humans change the ways and means of their behaviour, transform their natural premises and functions, elaborate and create new, special cultural forms of behaviour (Vygotsky, 1978). Children from the moment they are born participate in activities in families and day-care institutions that have communal traditions or activities, so that teachers, when the children start school, can expect that the children have shared experiences and competencies p. According to the idea of the zone on proximal development(defined as the distance between development level as determined by personal problem solving and the level of potential development as worked out through problem solving with adult guidance) (Vygotsky, 1978) , educational practices have to build on the
Open Document