1. In the readings on Family by Joel Moraco, the author mentions several characteristics of the modern family which have evolved along with modernization and social-cultural progression. For instance, the traditional divisions of labor, family roles, marital expectations, incidence and attitudes towards divorce, gender roles, and societal and cultural norms. Briefly describe any TWO of these modern trends. Why do you consider these trends to be most interesting and why?

Be sure to cite your work using APA format. If you have questions about APA format, refer to the “APA Style Resources” module posted in the classroom.

In order to make this course relevant to your interests and needs, please identify 2-3 questions about parenting that you would like to have answered by the end of the course.










2. After reviewing this week’s learning resources, discuss the role of nature vs. nurture on child development, including the impact of genetics and environmental factors like socioeconomic status, cultural norms, etc.

In what ways do you think your parents influenced you? Were these influences more “nature” or “nurture?”





Read:  Historical and Social Context of Families

Chapter 5 in Parenting: A Dynamic Perspective to learn about determinants and how a parent’s behavior is influenced by culture, setting, family structure, and pressures, which determine how they parent and raise their children.

Read:  Parenting Practices: The Good, the Bad and What to Do About It by McClelland et al.

Evidence-based article on best practices in parenting.

READ: Attachment through the life course

Description: Attachment between parent and child is based on attachments formed in childhood. This article explains the trajectory and long term consequences of attachment.

Audiovisual supplement on Attachment Theory:

Description: This video provides an audiovisual presentation of attachment theory.

Attachment & Bonding (Intro Psych Tutorial #180) – YouTube





3. What ethical and/or practical issues are associated with the following parenting topics: genetic testing, interaction between cognitive and and social/emotional development, use of technology to look inside brain development, media use in children? Select two topics to discuss and provide your viewpoints, but remember to substantiate your views with supportive evidence.

You may use the weekly resources or any properly cited external resource to support your response.


READ:  Infancy and Toddlerhood

Description: An overview of the physical, cognitive, and socioemotional development during infancy and toddlerhood.

READ:  Early childhood overview

Description: An overview of major milestones and issues of parenting at the stage of early childhood

Watch:  The Secret Life of the Brain: The Baby’s Brain

Did you know that even a tiny piece of a baby’s brain the size of a grain of rice contains about 10,000 nerve cells? Watch this brief clip of the PBS documentary “The Secret Life of the Brain: The Baby’s Brain” to learn about the development of a baby’s brain.

Watch:  The Science of Early Childhood Development

Jack Shonkoff, M.D., professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, the Harvard School of Public Health, and Harvard Medical School, describes the science of early childhood development. Dr. Shonkoff states the brain is “built from the bottom up” with basic circuits being created first and more complex circuits developing as the child grows. Watch this video clip to learn what neuroscience and behavioral research teach us about early childhood development.

Watch:  Patricia Kuhl: The Linguistic Genius of Babies

In this TED talk, Patricia Kuhl, Ph.D., co-director of the University of Washington Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences, endowed chair of the Bezos Family Foundation for Early Childhood Learning, and director of the National Science Foundation (NSF) Science of Learning Center, discusses her research on language acquisition in an infant’s brain. Dr. Kuhl discusses her team’s investigation of a child’s brain as they listen, learn to speak, solve problems, learn to read, and experience emotions.

Read:  Dimensions of Early Childhood

In their article in Dimensions of Early Childhood, Lorelle Lentz, Kay Kyeong-Ju Seo, and Briget Gruner re-examine the debate of how old children should be before they use technology. Lentz, Seo, and Gruner rephrase the question to “how much technology use by your children is ‘just right’?” Read the article to find out what technology can be used successfully with young children and which technology should only be used by older children.

Read:  The Developing Parent by Melissa Diener

Parents also develop alongside their children, and this article follows the significant development trends for the same.


Read:  Tips for Parents in Growing Independence from the experts at AAP

Read:  Child rearing strategy: Active Listening Technique







Applied Final Project Part 1: Create Your Parenting Case Study Topic

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As this Assignment is very brief (1-2 paragraphs), an APA Title Page is not required. However, be sure to include your name on the submission.


Using the planning table provided below, you will create a case study on a parenting topic of interest to you. Throughout the course you will conduct research on this topic, culminating in a Parenting Action Plan that proposes solutions to resolve your case.

Please note that each step to create your topic is discussed in a paragraph and then is collected in table form below these descriptions. You may find it easier to copy the table first and then read the descriptions, or vice versa.

What you will turn for this assignment (Applied Final Project Part 1) is a paragraph or two describing the case study scenario you create by making choices based on the table (Steps 1-7). There is a sample case study provided at the very end of these assignment instructions. Step 8, described below the table, also discusses how to compose these paragraphs for submission. Please read all the way to the bottom of these instructions.

Step 1: Select a scenario that may be a cause for concern in parents.

You may use the list below or identify a scenario of your own with the permission of the instructor. Write your scenario of interest into the planning table provided below.

List of Scenarios

· Sleeping arrangements for newborn

· Immunizations for children

· Bedwetting

· Breastfeeding older children

· Special needs, such as:

· Down syndrome or other genetic disorder

· Learning disabilities

· Autism

· Attention deficit with hyperactivity disorder

· Physical-motor disability

· Language delay, speech, related issues

· Teen pregnancy

· Alcohol and substance abuse in teens

· Relationship problems in teens, dating, inappropriate, and/or risk-taking behavior

· Mental health issues (e.g. depression, anxiety, psychotic disorders)

· Behavioral issues in younger children

· Behavioral issues in teens

· Parental conflict and argument

· Military deployment

· Grandparents raising grandchildren

· Adoption/foster parenting

· Racial and cultural issues in parenting -Tiger moms, immigrant children, LGBTQ, biracial identity, religion

· Older child parenting and emerging adulthood (age 18-21)

· Use of media-cellphones, tablets, etc.

· Impact of domestic violence

· Bullying, cyberbullying

· Stepfamilies

· Impact of divorce

· Choosing daycare, preschool

· Healthy diet, eating disorders

· College/postsecondary readiness

Step 2: Select an age group to which the scenario applies.

After picking your scenario, select an age group (see planning table below) that you would be interested in learning more about. For example, if you are interested in “choosing daycare” as a topic, are you interested in daycare for infants, toddlers, or school-aged children? Note that your scenario may not make sense for some age groups. For example, you probably would not be interested in learning about daycare options for an 18-year-old.

Step 3: Select a socioeconomic status for your scenario.

Determine whether your scenario will apply to a family of lower, middle or upper socioeconomic status (SES) (see planning table below). SES can profoundly impact access to resources which, in turn, can impact outcomes. It is important to know what services are available and who can access them.

Step 4: Family composition.

Using the planning table below, identify at least two details about the composition of the family. Who is living in the home? How many generations live in the home? What is the marital status of the parents? Are there siblings? Family composition can be a source of strength as well as a source of stress. Use this section to flesh out the details of the family in your scenario.

Step 5: Identify the type of problem in your scenario.

Use the planning table to identify the type of problem(s) present in your scenario. Check all that you think could apply. This will help you to figure out where you can find information on your topic. For example, if you are dealing with a topic like behavioral issues that emerge in a child after military deployment of a parent, you might start looking for research in psychology journals that deal with military families, like “Military Family Therapy.”

Step 6: Identify possible sites of impact for addressing your scenario.

Using the planning table, identify possible sites of impact for your scenario. For example, if you are interested in “choosing daycare,” you would probably select “daycare” as a site of impact, but you might also select “home” if you are interested in how daycare impacts behavior in the home. You might also select “school,” if you think the quality of daycare has an impact on academic performance.

Step 7: Identify potential solutions to address your scenario.

Using the planning table, check off the potential solution(s) that could form the basis of your parenting action plan.

Instructions: Choose and write down your topic and ideas about: The topic/title, why you think it is important, and where you think you will look for resources. 

Use the Planning Table below to create your chosen topic. Each section of the table below may be used to narrow down the specifics of your research paper. Each section will help to get you thinking about the aspects of your action plan. In the example below, the sections of the table appear in parenthesis to exemplify how these sections relate to your topic choice. Please note that these sections form a part of the final paper write up, and as such can be used while writing up your final paper. 

AFP Part 1: Planning Table


(write your chosen

scenario below)


· Birth-3 yrs

· 3-10 yrs

· 10-13 yrs

· 14-18 yrs

· 18-21 yrs



· lower

· middle

· upper



(include at least 2 of these details)

· Parental involvement?

· Single, married, divorced?

· Siblings?

· Who is living in the home?

· Employment status of parents?

· Other?


· Schoolwork or Homework Issue

· Behavioral Issue

· Social Issue

· Physical/Emotional Issue

· Other:________


· Home

· School

· Daycare

· Parent Workplace

· Public Spaces (e.g. playground, retail, grocery store, etc.)

· Other:__________


· Home Plan

· School Strategy

· Community Support Groups

· Behavioral Health Plan

· Medical/Health Plan

· Special Programs/Supports

· Other:_______


STEP 8: Crafting your parenting case study.

Write a parenting case study that incorporates all of the information in the planning table (Steps 1-7). Your case study should be 1-2 paragraphs in length. You may want to add details now or as your research progresses to make your case study more interesting.


The current case study involves a child with significant learning disabilities who is 8 years old and from a middle-class socioeconomic status background. The child has a 10-year-old sister with no known learning disabilities or behavioral issues. Parents recently separated, but both parents are actively involved with the children. A parenting action plan will be developed to address the child’s problems with schoolwork. I will discuss the case in the context of home and school (i.e. sites of impact), providing solutions that may include a home plan to address the parental separation as well as special programs in school and community supports (i.e. potential solutions). I will perform research for my Parenting Action Plan in the UMGC library to find scholarly research on the topic, and online to find government, nonprofit, and private agencies offering information, programs, or solutions for families.

Assignment Quality Checklist:

· Does your Parenting Case Study include at least one element from all 7 areas of the table (Steps 1-7)?

· Did you include some potential sources for research?

· Is your paragraph written clearly and proofread?

Your Parenting Case Study will be evaluated according to the following rubric:

  Criteria Met Criteria Partially Met Criteria Not Met
Scenario Selected 1 0
Age group 1 0
SES 1 0
Family composition (>2 details identified) 2 1 0
Type of Problem 1 0
Site of Impact 1 0
Potential Solution(s) Selected 1 0
Well-written and interesting case scenario 2 1 0


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