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Naturalistic Observation Report

1708 words - 7 pages

Naturalistic observation is a way of observing applicants in their own natural environment without the contestants realizing the observers are present. My observation took me to different places and settings to complete my assignment where I observed the subjects’ reactions and further relate it with concepts of psychology. This assignment is going to look into the observation at different settings by watching people as they go about their normal activities in their own habitats, and will briefly describe the concepts of superego, egocentrism, operant conditioning, pretend play, and lack of conservation. These concepts are common between the ages 4-6 years of age. The paper will also analyze the interactions using a reflective approach on the psychology of young children.

The concept of superego plays an active role in our daily lives. Freud’s interpretation of superego is most simply understood in the natural observation when observing the participants in the school setting, where a boy around 5-6 years of age playing around with bunch of kids saw the $20 bill lying on the playground with no one around it. He took the money and turned it into the school office in case anyone came looking for it. He wouldn’t want to lose $20, and hoped that whoever had lost it would ask about it in the office which leads me to believe that the child may have an overly strong superego because of the fact that “Once the superego emerges, children have a parental voice in their head that keeps them from violating society’s rules and make them guilty or ashamed if they do” (Sigelman & Rider, 2012, p. 49). According to Freud's psychoanalytic theory of personality, the superego is the factor of personality composed of our internalized ideals that we have acquired from our parents and from society. The superego works to suppress the urges of the “id-the impulsive, irrational, and selfish part of the personality whose mission is satisfy the instincts” (p. 49) and tries to make the ego behave morally, rather than realistically. The superego safeguards society by housing our morals and values. Society significantly influences the growth of our superego, but it is finally our decision how we choose to define our moralities.

In this observation Jean Piaget’s concept of egocentrism describes how the children enter the preoperational stage of cognitive development where the young kids have difficulty understanding other points of view. Young children often choose the view that corresponded to their own position that is, “to view the world solely from one’s own perspective” (Sigelman & Rider, 2012, p. 230) that other people see, hear and feel exactly the same as the child does. This can be clearly understood from my observation exercise, which was carried out on the park’s playground on a weekend morning and lasted approximately 45 minutes. The subject of the observation was a boy and a girl around 4 – 6 years of age playing next to each other making a sand castle. I...

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