Yells learned behavior

Behavior in Infants

Hello. Around four children are born around the world every second. That's 135 million children a year. Although each of these babies has their own character, there are certain patterns that are common to all of them. This video is about this behavior of infants. You will learn which behavior is innate and which behavior is learned, what can be found out with dummy experiments and why a parent-child relationship is so important. Above all, reflexes, instincts and behavior caused by key stimuli are innate to us. A key stimulus is a trigger to which we respond with an instinctive movement. Reflexes also follow a stimulus and trigger a quick, specific reaction. If an object moves quickly towards the baby's eyes, his songs will close to protect the eyes: the blink reflex. You have probably heard of the sucking reflex before. If you touch the lips and tip of the tongue of a baby with your finger, it will automatically start to suckle. This is important for nipple feeding. Actually, the name is misleading. Basically, the baby is just pressing his tongue rhythmically against the roof of his mouth. At the end of the first year of life, the sucking reflex is unlearned. It is similar with the grasping reflex. When the inner palm is touched, the baby's hand closes and clings. Behavioral patterns such as screaming are also innate. Since babies can hardly communicate otherwise, this is the crucial means of getting attention and help. Researchers now want to use dummy experiments to find out which stimulus is the key stimulus for a certain instinctive act. The dummies are often greatly simplified. Take, for example, smiling at you from the age of three months. An adult's face can easily be imitated with a mask. This mask must meet two conditions: it must have two eyes and it must depict a moving facial expression, for example a smile. Babies have been shown to respond best to a moving dummy made up of forehead, eyes, and nose facing them. However, most behaviors a baby has to learn, for example all movements: sitting, crawling, standing, running and walking are complex processes in which many muscles have to be coordinated. Everything that regulates our social life has to be learned with great effort: speaking, understanding contexts, playing games, and behaving in accordance with the social rules of our society. So-called alienation, the rejection of strangers, only develops in the sixth to eighth month. Before that, infants don't really distinguish between the people who pick them up. However, a few very close caregivers are important for development. This can be described as a parent-child relationship, even if it doesn't necessarily have to be about the biological parents. This social and emotional bond in the first year of life determines how much trust the growing person will later have in other people. If the relationship is secure, the child will have more confidence. If she is insecure, less trust. Psychologist and behaviorist Harry Harlow conducted highly controversial experiments on rhesus monkeys to explore the fundamentals of the parent-child relationship. He put baby monkeys in a cage in which they had no mother but two dummies. So you could choose between a milk-dispensing frame made of wire with teats and a cozy, fur-covered, warm, but not a milk-giving image of a monkey. The babies clearly decided in favor of the cuddly surrogate mom and only went to the wire frame to eat. In fact, Harlow made his experiments even more cruel and equipped the fur mother with spikes or let her blow cold air on the child. Nevertheless, the baby monkeys remained loyal to her. In a second experimental set-up, he demonstrated that monkey children growing up completely isolated have behavioral disorders so that they are no longer able to raise offspring. Babies who only grow up with their mothers are more anxious. Monkeys that grew up with their mother and with playmates can find their way around optimally. With these experiments, Harlow was able to prove, despite all the cruelty, how important a close social bond is for emotional development. Even today, babies are placed on their mothers' stomachs immediately after birth and they are carried in slings. Let us summarize again: The innate behavior includes the eyelid closure, sucking and grasping reflex, screaming and other instinctive behaviors. The learned behavior includes complex movements, speaking, understanding connections, recognizing people. Inborn behavior, such as smiling at you, can be provoked with dummy experiments. This is done with a simplified mask that only shows key stimuli for this reaction. The early parent-child relationship is crucial for the ability to trust. This was examined, for example, with Harry Harlow's sometimes cruel experiments on baby monkeys. If a baby has secure, also physical, connection to close caregivers, it will also have more trust later on. If the bond is insecure, it will grow into a suspicious person. I hope you learned a lot. Bye!