Development of resilience among school children against violence

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<ul><li><p>Available online at</p><p>1877-0428 2010 Published by Elsevier Ltd.doi:10.1016/j.sbspro.2010.07.122</p><p>Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 5 (2010) 455458</p><p>WCPCG-2010</p><p>Development of resilience among school children against violence Lipi Mukhopadhyay </p><p>Received January 12, 2010; revised February 3, 2010; accepted March 6, 2010 </p><p>Abstract </p><p>The evidence of violence among the adolescent students across the world has become a deep concern to psychologists toward scientific inquiry of human development. Development of positive or negative personality is a construct of various factors that are well established over the years. A large number of literature is available to understand the causes of personality development and behaviour disorder. Extensive knowledge based data available claim that human behaviour may be developed by positive emotion and social intelligence. Integrated knowledge of human behaviour may help to design simple and useful technique of tests using less statistical analysis with more qualitative data and content analysis including case study methods. Impact of Positive Emotion Community support, school teachers , parents and peer groups - all contribute to develop personality. 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. </p><p>Keywords: Resilience,children, school ,adolescent, personality ,behaviour, self efficacyand cognition. </p><p>1. Introduction </p><p>Development of a positive or negative personality is a construct of various factors that are well established over the years. A vast available literature support helps to understand the causes of personality development and behaviour disorder. In the Millennium development goal it is conceptualized to enhance skills and life standards through universal education and health care to deliver fruits of development. But violence across the world among the adolescent children poses a serious threat to human development. </p><p>Adolescence is the most critical age for development of moral values because of certain biological changes and increased influence on emotion, aspiration, rationality and judgement that are found during adolescence. It is a transitional period, the adolescent is neither a child nor an adult. This ambiguous state contributes greatly to the adolescent identity crisis (Erikson, 1968). </p><p>1.1 Definition of Resilience </p><p>Resilience has been defined as the maintenance of healthy and successful functioning or adaptation within the context of a significant adversity or threat (Garmezy, 1993; Luthar, Cicchetti, &amp; Becker, 2000). Thus, two elements must co-exist for resilience to be present: a circumstance that has the potential to disrupt childrens development and reasonably successful adaptation.Multiple definitions have been used to measure risk or adversity; an individual risk model explores the contribution of one risk factor to the development of negative outcomes (e.g., </p></li><li><p>456 Lipi Mukhopadhyay / Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 5 (2010) 455458</p><p>child maltreatment), whereas a cumulative risk model asserts that accumulation of adversity results in maladaptation (Rutter, 1979). </p><p> 1.2 Positive Adaptation </p><p>Positive adaptation has been defined in several ways, including absence of psychopathology, behavioral and cognitive competence (Kim-Cohen, Moffitt, Caspi, &amp; Taylor, 2004), and mastery of appropriate developmental tasks. The importance of both external adaptation to the environment and internal sense of wellbeing as part of a comprehensive assessment of resilience is emphasized. Moreover, resilience is better characterized as a dynamic process, because individuals can be resilient to specific environmental hazards or resilient at one time period but not another (Rutter, 2006).Despite conceptual inconsistencies, research has reliably reported a number of characteristics associated with resilience like positive and supportive care, family relationship, competent parenting, childs temperament and higher cognitive ability (Masten et al., 1999; Wyman et al., 1999). It is found that positive adaptation is associated with lower levels of risk, including less parental psychopathology, life stress, poverty and a member of a majority ethnic group (Bradley &amp; Corwyn, 2002).Parental warmth, positive expectations, support, and low derogation predict childrens behavioral and emotional adaptation under a wide variety of adverse circumstances (Katz &amp; Gottman, 1997; Kim-Cohen et al., 2004). Thus, children whose mothers are available and supportive will be better able to develop self-regulation abilities within the context of effective motherchild interactions (Wyman et al., 1999). </p><p>1.3 Influence of Peers and Friends </p><p>The adolescent spends most of his time outside the home with members of the peer groups, and they have a greater influence on his attitudes, interests, values and behaviour than his family has. Adolescents whose friends use alcohol and drugs are much more likely to use them than are those adolescents whose peers do not engage in such behavior. It is found that initiation of alcohol and drug use is through friends rather than strangers (Kandel, 1991). The importance of peers in the lives of adolescents has received a great deal of attention (Allen, et. al. 1998). In current thinking, the adolescent peer context is regarded as a prime instigator of new behaviors and lifestyles. </p><p>1.4 Relationship with Parents </p><p>The research on risk behaviours among certain individual and contextual characteristics with adolescents involvement in risk behaviours suggests that the need to be close to parents in times of distress - and for parents to respond to their childrens distress- are biologically based to promote survival of the species. Adolescents continue to use parents as a secure base for exploration, using temporary returns to the safe haven of parents to help them, particularly in times of distress, illness, fear, or stress (Marvin &amp; Britner, 1999).It is found that children who do not share problems with parents,have negative feelings toward parents and feelings of being overly controlled by parents are all concurrently linked to higher delinquency, to belonging to deviant peer groups, and to doing poorly in school both socially and academically (Kerr &amp; Stattin, 2000). </p><p>1.5 Objectives </p><p> The study intends to highlight the gap between knowledge and its application with appropriate tools in understanding and moulding human behaviour on par with socio-economic and cultural domains. </p><p> The influence of family characteristics and cultural factors in development of positive behaviour. </p><p> Impact of peer groups and school environment on childrens behavioral problems. </p></li><li><p>Lipi Mukhopadhyay / Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 5 (2010) 455458 457</p><p>1.6 Method </p><p>The present study is a part of a longitudinal survey on adolescent childrens strength conducted in two metropolitan cities Delhi and Kolkata and in rural Tribal area of West Bengal. Sample selected from IX &amp; X standard of prominent co-education Public Schools of Delhi and Kolkata and government schools of West Bengal through a checklist of positive values, parental education, income and sibling information. Total sample size was 400 where 200 each accounted for male and female students. Another checklist of students conduct, performance in examination, relationship with teachers and peers influence was used. Based on the information collected through checklists on variables like self confidence, discipline, resilience, care, trust, teamwork and academic performance and reports of the teachers about the conduct of students, a research team met the parents of a selective group for interviewing and analyzing data. An in-depth interactive probing and discussion undertaken to gauge the issues like temperament, behaviour disposition, parental time, support, interaction with their children and immediate neighborhood. </p><p>Based on Mean value of variables such as highest (75 and above) and lowest (40 and below) scorers, a selected group of ten high scorers and ten low scorers were selected from cities and rural areas for analysis. </p><p> 1.7 Findings </p><p>In case of high scorers with apparent positive values, it is observed that mothers were housewives, educated and spent quality time with their children. They were vigilant towards their childrens daily school activity, task and teachers comments. They also attended Parents Teachers Meetings regularly and were aware of their childrens performance in class and peer association. Students with low academic results showed that parents had no time to spend with their children. They hardly enquired about their school activities and marks obtained in examinations. Such students were intelligent although their academic performance was not up to the mark. On enquiry it was revealed that students were not motivated to study, spent most of their time in socializing and also missed classes. They mostly belonged to high socio- economic backgrounds with nuclear families having low interaction with parents .Parents of such students were authoritative and used restrictive discipline on children. </p><p>In rural tribal areas, parents were not educated and belonged to low socio- economic backgrounds. Their community life was found to be supportive and caring. Children had to share the work at home like taking care of their younger siblings, helping parents in getting food and other necessary resources for their homes. Children of such families were hardworking and resilient to stress, unfavorable circumstances under the threats of cyclone and natural hazards and lack of resources. They showed high respect to elders and teachers, less aggression and stress. </p><p>1.8 Conclusion </p><p>Theories of Multiple Intelligences (Gardner,1993) and Social Cognitive(Bandura,1986) emphasize the importance of individual potentiality and self efficacy that promote or inhibit learning. According to these theories people contribute by selecting and influencing the environments they encounter, to the development of their own capacities. People are proactive not passive. Thus growth and reduction of self efficacy is influenced by complex interplay of individuals .internal regulatory processes, environment, emotional and situational factors .Based on this knowledge a systematic module may be constructed to help inculcating self efficacy and resilience among children to cope with adversity. School Councilors should be engaged in meeting students regularly to understand and identify problem of adjustment if any among the students at appropriate level. </p><p>Reference </p><p>Allen, J.P., Moore, C., Kuperminc, G., &amp; Bell, K. (1998). Attachment and adolescent psychosocial functioning. Child Development. 69 (5), 1406-1419.</p><p>Bandura,A.(1986) Social foundations of thought and action: A social cognitive theory.Englewood Cliffs,N.J: Prentice Hall Bordon, L.M., Donnermeyer, J.F., &amp; Scheer, S.D. (2001). Extra-curricular activities and peer influence on substance use. Journal of Adolescent </p><p>and Family Health, 2 (1), 12-19. Bradley, R. H., &amp; Corwyn, R. F. (2002). Socioeconomic status and child development. Annual Review of Psychology, 53, 371399. </p></li><li><p>458 Lipi Mukhopadhyay / Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 5 (2010) 455458</p><p>Erikson, E.H., (1968) Identity: Youth and crisis. 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