View Full Version : What do you think about environment shaping development?


mildadhd
06-02-15, 03:58 PM
The idea that the environment shapes development is a very straightforward one, even if the details are immeasurably complex.

Think of a kernel of wheat.

No matter how genetically sound a seed may be, factors such as sunlight, soil quality and irrigation must act on it properly if it is to germinate and grow into a healthy adult plant.

Two identical seeds, cultivated under opposite conditions, would yield two different plants: one tall, robust and fertile; the other stunted, wilted and unproductive.

The second plant is not diseased: it only lacked the conditions required to reach its full potential.

Moreover, if it does develop some sort of plant ailment in the course of its life, it would be easy to see how a deprived environment contributed to its weakness and susceptibility.

The same principles apply to the human brain.


-Gabor Mate M.D., "In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts", p 188.


This thread is meant to explore and discuss how environment shapes human brain development.

What environmental conditions demote healthy brain development?

What environmental conditions promote healthy brain development?


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KarmanMonkey
06-02-15, 04:12 PM
Wow, this takes me back to introductory psyc and introductory philosophy. People have been debating the nature vs nurture argument for eons!

If you want a non-philosophical viewpoint, take a look at twin studies and/or the nun study (where nuns at a convent were studied over many years, and had a virtually identical environment and upbringing, so it looks at the differences based on their genetic makeup)

If you want the philosophical argument, I would postulate that virtually every aspect of who we are and who we can become is seated in both; that environment can overcome our genetic predispositions just like our genetics can impact how we fit within an environment.

Personally, as far as what promotes or demotes healthy brain development, I would say that the ability to adapt to a child's needs, abilities and learning styles is key.

mildadhd
06-02-15, 04:46 PM
Wow, this takes me back to introductory psyc and introductory philosophy. People have been debating the nature vs nurture argument for eons!

If you want a non-philosophical viewpoint, take a look at twin studies and/or the nun study (where nuns at a convent were studied over many years, and had a virtually identical environment and upbringing, so it looks at the differences based on their genetic makeup)

If you want the philosophical argument, I would postulate that virtually every aspect of who we are and who we can become is seated in both; that environment can overcome our genetic predispositions just like our genetics can impact how we fit within an environment.

Personally, as far as what promotes or demotes healthy brain development, I would say that the ability to adapt to a child's needs, abilities and learning styles is key.

If my opening post suggests a nature verses nurture argument, I did not intend so.

Please feel free to post any known genetic information along with any known environmental information, known to be involved in shaping brain development, if you feel the information is important.

What are the child's environmental needs for healthy brain develop, etc.

Note in the opening post quote example, the seeds are identical, and differences in seeds/plants development are a result of different environments.

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mildadhd
06-02-15, 06:17 PM
The three environmental conditions absolutely essential to optimal human brain development are nutrition, physical security and consistent emotional nurturing.

In the industrial world, except in cases of severe neglect or dire poverty, the baseline nutritional and shelter needs of children are usually satisfied.

The third prime necessity--emotional nurture--is the one most likely to be disrupted in Western societies.

The importance of this point cannot be overstated: emotional nurturance is an absolute requirement for healthy neurobiological brain development."..


-Gabor Mate M.D., "In The Realm Of Hungry Ghosts", p 185.


-Essential Nutritional Needs
-Essential Shelter Needs
-Essential Emotional Needs

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mildadhd
06-02-15, 08:08 PM
-What are the essential nutritional needs found in the environment required for healthy brain development?

-What are the essential shelter needs found in the environment required for healthy brain development?

-What are the essential emotional needs found in the environment required for healthy brain development?




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mildadhd
06-02-15, 08:49 PM
What are the basic biological brain mechanisms involved in all three questions?


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Little Missy
06-02-15, 09:51 PM
What is the prize? :)

mildadhd
06-02-15, 10:03 PM
What is the prize? :)

Awareness.


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