Caregiver and infant interactions

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  • Caregiver and infant interaction
    • Reciprocity
      • Babies have 'alert phases' mothers pick up on and respond to 2/3 of the time (Feldman and Eidelman 2007)
      • (Also Feldman 2007) From 3 months interaction becomes increasingly frequent and involves close attention to verbal signals and facial expressions
        • Elicits a response from the other.
      • Traditional views see babies as having a passive role of only receiving care from adult.
        • Babies seem to have a more active role than previously thought
      • Brazelton et al (1975) described interaction as a dance = each partner responds to the other's moves
    • Interactional synchrony
      • 'Temporal micro-level behaviour' (Feldman 2007) which is mirrored in adults and babies
      • Meltzoff and Moore (1977) observed infants as young as 2 weeks
        • An adult displayed 1 of 3 expressions
          • Child's response was filmed and identified by observers
        • Found an association between the expression the adults showed and the action of the babies
      • Interactional synchrony is important for the development of attachment.
        • Isabella et al (1989) observed 30 mothers and their infants and assessed the degree of synchrony, and quality of interaction
          • High levels of synchrony associated with better quality attachment
    • Evaluation
      • It's hard to understand what's happen observing infants as it's merely a study of facial expressions, we cannot really know what these observations mean
      • Controlled observations being filmed from several angles capture fine details. Babies do not care about being filmed so will act normally (Good validity)
      • Observations don't tell us the purpose of reciprocity and interactional synchrony. Feldman (2012) argues that these key terms just describe the behaviours
        • There is evidence for them being helpful in attachment, empathy and language

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