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Posts Tagged ‘child development’

– contributed by CCHP Reference Archivist Lizette Royer Barton.

It’s July.

It’s the National Recreation and Park Association’s Park and Recreation Month.

Summer is half over.

Let’s face it – we could all use a vacation.

In honor of summer vacations and parks and recreation, let’s check out some psychologists enjoying a little rest and relaxation.

I have to start with these photographs William R. (Bob) Hood sent to Muzafer and Carolyn Sherif. Bob Hood was a graduate student at Oklahoma, a co-conspirator in the Robbers Cave Study, and an author on  Intergroup Conflict and Cooperation: The Robbers Cave Experiment (1954). But I like to think of him as the Clark Griswold of psychology.

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Muzafer and Carolyn Wood Sherif papers, box V63, folder 8.

Of the dozen or so images the Hoods sent the Sherifs the next one was my favorite. I’ve been to Moab, UT. I experienced Arches National Park and the Canyonlands National Park on a month-long road trip with three girlfriends after college. It was a life-changing experience for me and just like Jack White (another graduate student of Muzafer Sherif’s and co-author on the Robbers Cave book), I lost my ever-loving mind.

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Muzafer and Carolyn Wood Sherif papers, box V63, folder 8 caption

Henry H. Goddard was a voracious traveler and his collection contains hundreds of travel photos – including a scrapbook we recently digitized and made available online HERE. The 30+ page scrapbook from the early 1900s contains incredible images including this one of climbers (possibly Goddard himself) on Blackfoot Glacier in Glacier National Park in Montana.

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Henry H. Goddard papers, box V37, folder 4

Maybe climbing a mountain glacier isn’t your speed. Maybe you just want to leisurely cruise the country in style. If that’s the case, Molly Harrower would’ve been a good travel partner for you. Molly’s Folly seems like a blast!

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Molly Harrower papers, box V54, folder 4

THIS is the way to wake up in the morning! Notice the typewriter? Was Molly working while on vacation? I like to think she was typing letters to friends and providing updates on the folly.

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Molly Harrower papers, box V54, folder 4

Gardner and Lois B. Murphy were also big travelers and their collection includes hundreds of photographs from their trips all over the world.

The notation on back of this image of Lois in Puerto Rico claims she was at a conference. I like to think she tossed her name badge and requisite conference bag onto her hotel room floor and then ran to the ocean as soon as the sessions ended. I bet she did.

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Gardner and Lois B. Murphy papers, box V61, folder 1.5

The Murphy papers have a lot of photographs of Gardner hiking and camping throughout his long life. He was outdoorsy to say the least.

I really love this photograph of Gardner cooking on a stove made of cinder blocks on a dock near a lake. What’s better after a day of hiking, fishing, and general vacationing than a good meal cooked outside near a lake?

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Gardner and Lois B. Murphy papers, box V40, folder 2

The notation on the back of the photograph didn’t provide any information about the other man in the photograph, but it did give me a few clues that deserved some further investigation. So I googled the following: Cloverly + Holderness + Frank.

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And lo and behold the Googles delivered and I was down the vacation rabbit hole.

The Frank of “Frank’s dock” was Lawrence K. Frank. As the director of the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Memorial from 1923-1929 and director of the Rockefeller Foundation’s child-development program from 1929-1933,  he was instrumental in establishing Child Development Institutes across the United States through Rockefeller funding. He also turned out to be a mentor to many and helped quite a few social scientists secure employment and funding for their research. I even came across a quote from Margaret Mead that claimed Frank “more or less invented the behavioral sciences” (I still haven’t located a citation. Anyone have one?).

So the Frank of “Frank’s dock” turns out to be super important when it comes to the social sciences and “Cloverly” turns out to be Frank’s summer home – Cloverly Cottage in New Hampshire.

Cloverly Cottage was built in 1918 and was Frank’s summer residence from 1921 until his death in 1968.  A history of the cottage claims “Frank used Cloverly as a base for meetings with colleagues over the years and he and other social scientists held discussions and wrote articles and books….it served as a spot for inquiry into the fields of psychology, anthropology, and child development….”

Who else besides Gardner Murphy hung out at Cloverly Cottage and what kinds of discussions took place?

I took to the Murphy papers to look for some answers and I found a folder of letters commissioned by Gardner Murphy in 1965 from various social scientists in honor of Lawrence K. Frank’s 75th birthday. Murphy collected the letters, copied them, and provided a bound volume of all the letters to Frank and each of the letter writers.

The list of contributors was a who’s who.

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Gardner and Lois B. Murphy papers, box M1806, folder 7

As I skimmed the letters I noticed several instances of folks specifically mentioning the cottage in New Hampshire. I knew Gardner Murphy spent time at Cloverly but I also found evidence that so did Peter Blos, Erik Erickson, William Walter GreulichHelen and Robert Lynd, Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson, Ruth Washburn, and of course Lois B. Murphy

Check out this letter from Erik Erikson (written in the third person).

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“A few weeks later the young man [Erikson] and his wife, were indeed driving through NH…they looked up Mr. Frank’s telephone number and were promptly invited to dinner. After that it seemed quite natural for Mr. Frank to ask the couple to stay the night – so natural, in fact, that they stayed for a week….the host also found it natural to arrange for a research position for the young man, so he could develop some notions he had.”

And take a look at this one from Helen Merrill Lynd.

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“…we were fortunate in having a month at that happy place which became a center of openness and friendship for so many of us….no one was ever turned away from Cloverly….It was at Larry’s home that I first met Erik Erikson and Kurt Lewin….New Hampshire was a gathering place for people who were asking fresh questions, shaping important problems in new forms.”

THE HISTORY AT CLOVERLY IS ALMOST TOO MUCH FOR ME.  But wait! There’s more!

Cloverly Cottage, Lawrence K. Frank’s cottage in Holderness, New Hampshire that housed “Frank’s dock” and was a meeting space and catalyst for countless research projects, theories, ideas, and chatter in the social sciences is still in the Frank family and available for rent right now through VRBO. I’m not kidding!

I think I need to book a vacation. Maybe it’s time to make a little history.

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Contributed by Jillian Phipps, Pennie Fordham, and Katherine Gray.

Have you ever wondered where the idea that positive actions should be rewarded came from? Have you ever wondered where the concept of bad behavior being its own punishment came from? If so, then check out the Sidney Bijou papers, which are now available for research at the CCHP.

Sidney Bijou (1908-2009) was a psychologist who specialized in child psychology, behaviorism, and studies on autism. Many of Bijou’s studies showed that encouraging good behavior led to more good behavior, more so than when bad behavior was punished. Bijou traveled all over the world to give symposiums on his research.

Sidney Bijou towards the start of his career, undated. From box M6303, Folder 6

 

Sidney Bijou later in his career, undated. From box M6303, Folder 6

 

Name badge from the Portage Conference in Hiroshima in 1998. From box M6292, Folder 9

Some of Bijou’s major works include Behavior Analysis of Child Development (1993) and Childhood Development: The Basic Stage of Early Childhood (1976).   He contributed to other works, such as New Directions in Behavior Development and Behavior Modification: Contributions to Education, both with Emilio Ribes-Inesta.

The Sidney Bijou papers include his academic works, from when he was in college as a student to when he was teaching as a professor; his research files for his written works; manuscripts of the written works themselves; reference files that show what he was working on year to year; and biographical information on his career that he compiled himself. His papers contain 13 boxes of archival materials. These files contain most of his work in child psychology, behaviorism, and autism research.

Of special note in Bijou’s files is his work on effective teaching and treatment methods for autistic children (1990-1998). In these files, Bijou has different curricula, class designs, and possible ways to assist autistic children in integrating into the public school system.

Example of the worksheets Bijou used to assess how well schools were integrating autistic children. From box M6293, Folder 7.

 

The processing of this archival collection fulfilled requirements for students enrolled in the course Foundations of Museums and Archives I and was generously sponsored by the EX[L] Center at the University of Akron.

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– contributed by Lizette Royer Barton

The Cummings Center’s second installment of the 5 Minute History Lesson focuses on the life and career of Dr. Ruth Winifred Howard (1900-1997).

Dr. Robert V. Guthrie‘s (1976) Even the Rat Was White: A Historical View of Psychology introduced many of us to Dr. Ruth Howard via a brief two-page biography. Lucky for all of us, during his early research, Dr. Guthrie was able to track down Dr. Howard and interview her for his book.

He called information and asked for a Chicago listing for A. S. Beckham (her husband was psychologist Albert S. Beckham). He dialed the number and Dr. Ruth Howard picked up the phone. They spoke for nearly an hour and Dr. Guthrie recorded the entire interview.

“Lo and behold I received a number; I couldn’t believe it.” 

The phone interview is one of just a handful of known original artifacts for Dr. Ruth W. Howard. She speaks candidly with Dr. Guthrie about her upbringing in Washington DC and her quest toward a doctorate in psychology that took her to numerous universities until she finally earned her Ph.D. in psychology in 1934 from the University of Minnesota. They discussed her work in private practice alongside her husband Dr. Albert S. Beckham as well as her independent work within the Chicago mental health community following his death in 1964.

Throughout the early part of the interview Dr. Guthrie repeatedly referred to her as Dr. or Mrs. Beckham. Finally after roughly 20 minutes she had enough.

“I would appreciate it if you could call me Dr. Ruth Howard….”

Gladly, Dr. Howard. Gladly.

See the 5 Minute History Lesson series on youtube.

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– contributed by Rhonda Rinehart

This month’s selection is by Rhonda Rinehart, Manager of Special Collections.

BOOK: Better Living Booklets for Parents and Teachers: Junior Life Adjustment Booklets/Life Adjustment Booklets, Published by Science Research Associates, Inc./Grolier, New York

Among CHP’s thousands of books, you will find tucked between larger, more prominent volumes, a smattering of thin, nearly undetectable booklets on parenting and child development.  Written by various authors for the Better Living Booklets series produced by the Science Research Associates, Inc. throughout the 1940s and 1950s, these booklets focus mainly on advising adults and caregivers on helping children adjust to the many social situations they will encounter on the road to adulthood.  Many more were also written specifically for children and adolescents to help them understand feelings they may be experiencing as they grow up and preparing them for decisions they will need to make as they adjust to becoming adults.  And still a few were written with the idea of helping adults understand themselves and their life situations.  Authors include child psychologist Mary Louise Northway; children’s author Doris Gates; essayist Sidonie M. Gruenberg; education specialist Ruth Strang; and novelist Hilda Sidney Krech.

As tools for comparison, these booklets offer a wealth of ideas and attitudes that can help us place psychology within its historical context.  Although many of the ideas portrayed in these booklets would certainly be considered outmoded, all of the topics are still relevant today.  Learning, development, feelings and emotions, relationships, and social issues are all topics that are discussed and written about today.  How we have come to understand these topics culturally, socially and professionally, is very different from attitudes in the 1940s and ‘50s.

Cover images of Junior Life Adjustment Booklets/Life Adjustment Booklets

Cover images of Junior Life Adjustment Booklets/Life Adjustment Booklets

The historical context in which these booklets were written places them firmly within an era that was beginning to see changes that would guide movements of the 1960s and 1970s.  Sex and gender roles, both common topics of these booklets, were steeped in traditional thinking about men and women, but the fact that these subjects were beginning to be discussed at all rather than the common practice of hiding them away indicates changing attitudes about these often-considered taboo subjects.

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Not every idea presented in this series is completely outmoded or naive, however.  Consider modern views about popularity, managing money, and educational testing and it could be argued that though our culture and society have changed in attitude about these topics, is it necessarily an improved, advanced or “better” one?

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As with any of the materials at the CHP, studying these booklets can allow us to see where we’ve been, compare where we are now and hopefully help us learn for the future.

The entire catalog list of Better Living Booklets titles available at the CHP can be viewed here:  http://tinyurl.com/mguwwgx

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