The given employee training presentation will primarily focus on outlining the importance of proper diagnostics and assessment techniques, which are used to differentiate the needs of children and adolescents. It is evident that these age and developmental groups possess a wide range of distinctive elements, which should be considered in order to design an effective approach in regards to these target groups.
Rapport with Children
Building rapport with children is an intricate process, which can be affected by a wide range of factors. These might include a child’s emotional state and maturity, where his or her current state can be highly influenced by tiredness, hunger, and separation (“Working with children and young people in out-of-home care,” n.d.). It is also important to consider the overall developmental stage because childhood is a stratified process with highly variant steps. The presence of other adults is also an important factor, which can directly influence rapport levels. It is critical to utilize simple words, and it is especially relevant among younger children, who might lack the knowledge and capability to understand complex phrases and other literary instruments. Lastly, humor and fun-based relationship are critical for sustaining the rapport between a child and a professional.
Rapport with Adolescents
Building and maintaining rapport with adolescents is more nuanced compared with children. The main element for consideration is the emotional state and maturity of teenagers because these factors can be highly volatile among the target group. The members of the given developmental stage can be reluctant and resistant to interact, which is why mirroring their behavior can prove to be useful for inducing self-reflection (Selekman, 2021). Another important element of adolescent rapport is valuing silence because non-verbal communication can be critical in this regard. Teenagers are generally smarter and more intelligent than children, which is why being honest is crucial since they can sense pretentiousness. In addition, age-appropriate language needs to be utilized in order to build proper rapport.
Rapport with Adolescents
There is a wide range of critical characteristics of adolescent counseling, which need to be considered in order to determine the proper diagnostic and assessment techniques for the target groups. The first major element is based on age normative tasks, which define key functions, such as social, psychological, and sexual ones. The second critical component is the presence of perspective, where a therapist needs to put himself or herself in a position of a teenager in order to build an effective path for communicative efforts. One of the specifics of adolescent rapport building and maintaining is rooted in the notion of the teenagers’ tendency to hide the problem or evade its diagnosis. Lastly, the case analysis is more mandatory in regards to teenagers since the individual path of development is unique and detail-dependent in comparison with children.
There are evident similarities in regards to building and maintaining rapport with children and adolescents, which are emotional states, emotional maturity, age-related language, and power dynamics. In both target groups, emotions are critical to consider since the rapport requires the proper emotional background of the interaction. Their current emotional state can be affected by a wide range of factors, which need to be understood and factored-in in order to conduct a proper assessment. In addition, emotional maturity plays a central role in shaping the course of the interaction because the majority of individuals can be immature with clear indications of anger management issues. Both groups require age-related language because children need a simpler approach, whereas teenagers need relatable communication. Lastly, power dynamics are evident because they are forced to interact with an adult, who is perceived as an authority.
The key differences in building rapport with children and adolescent lies in the fact that honesty might be useful for the latter but harmful for the former. Children can be unprepared or not ready for harsh truths about the realities of life, which is why they might need more comforting and convenient solutions. Humor and fun-based activities can be effective in regards to children, but adolescents might lose respect for an expert. Silence can be highly uncomfortable for children during the interaction and put additional stress on them, whereas it can be necessary for adolescents in order to establish proper power dynamics since they attempt to be rebellious. Lastly, the general presence of adults can have different effects on the outcome of rapport building, where children feel comforted by the presence of their parents, and teenagers would prefer them to be absent.
Developmental Challenges among Adolescents
The most evident developmental challenge during the counseling process of adolescents is a physical transformation. Teenagers’ body undergoes drastic changes during the given period, which is why they might have body image problems. Sexual development is also a key element of adolescence since secondary sexual traits become more prominent, and thus, sexual tensions begin. The majority of teenagers can have role and identity confusion, where these elements are no longer valid due to the passing of childhood. Teenagers can also have a detached perception of the world around them, where they do not fully understand how social structures work and operate. Adolescents can have non-adherence to their true selves due to media or peer pressure, where they are reluctant to reveal their true identity.
Developmental Challenges among Children
In the case of the counseling process for children, the developmental challenges are more fundamental and impactful because they are conditions and real hindrances. For example, a child might have language and communication skills deficiencies, which are the result of poor education and lack of healthy interaction. Another direct challenge is a learning disability, which can lead to a wide range of barriers in the counseling process. Speech and language delays can affect the effectiveness of interactive procedures between a counselor and a child. Social issues are a more variant description of an array of problems, which can lead to difficulties in counseling. In addition, ADHD and autism are mental health conditions, which can be an issue on their own.
Family Stressors and Adolescents
Family stressors affect adolescents differently than children because the former have an equal relationship with their families, whereas children are mainly inferior and have no authority. Therefore, teenagers will most likely be confrontational with the source of distress, which are usually parents themselves. In addition, teenagers can adopt family stressors as their form of rebelliousness. For example, the addiction of a parent can make a teenager more interested in using drugs, such as smoking. The stress can also be suppressed by a teenager in order to avoid appearing weak. Adolescents are usually more isolated from their corresponding families, which is family stressors can make them even more alienated.
Adolescents can be subject to the search for some form of meaning in their lives. In addition, they become interested in gaining control and power over their parents, but they also require love and affection. The means of achieving both can be conflicting as their attitude towards themselves and the outer environment. In addition, they seek social validation and prestige, which is why they become invested in the social hierarchy.
Family Stressors and Children
However, family stressors among children are more one directional, where the target group is primarily a recipient of the stress without further projection in the form of confrontation. This manifests in the fact that children become prone to victimhood, where they lack any power to alter the source of the stressors. In addition, family stressors can be more impactful on children since the emotional response is more impressionable because they are more attached to their parents. Families also provide the only safety circle for children, which is why such stressors can disrupt the given circle, whereas teenagers might rely on their peers for support. Lastly, being a victim of the family stressor and having no coping mechanism can lead to anxiety and depression among children.
Therapy Models for Children
There are two main therapy models, such as family therapy and play therapy, which can be used for assessing and diagnosing children. These measures are highly effective due to their intrinsic advantages. For example, family therapy can be conducted with the presence of parents and family members in order for them to act as emotional support for a child. He or she can feel distressed and anxious when left along with a therapist, which is why family therapy can be effective. Family can also be a part of the problem, where a therapist will utilize its presence in order to have a more thorough understanding of the issues (“Modes of psychotherapy for adolescents and children,” 2021). In addition, such an approach provides an opportunity for on-site communication of a family member and a child, where key relationship advancements and modifications can be done immediately.
Another effective therapy approach for children is playing therapy, which has a wide range of advantages over other forms of strategies. It is best suited for younger children, who intrinsically enjoy playing and having fun. The most important element of play therapy is a high level of engagement within the therapeutic process. Children are more likely to actively participate in the procedural attempts of therapy compared to standard stationary approaches, where they are forced to sit and communicate with an expert. The given form of intervention also leads to improved interaction and emotional assessment because the playful approach is fundamentally emotionally engaging.
Therapy Models for Adolescents
Cognitive behavioral therapy can be considered as one of the most effective therapy approaches or models for adolescents. The main reason is the fact that the issues in regards to teenagers are manifested in their proneness to act and behave in a specific way. It also requires a more mature audience, which is why adolescents are more suited than children. The communication puts a great deal of emphasis and accentuation on an in-depth analysis rather than frivolous or trivial activities with underlying goals. In addition, cognitive behavioral therapy allows the target audience to connect their inner elements with their outer behavioral patterns. It equips the adolescents with long-term knowledge of being able to cope with certain issues as well as understand themselves in an improved fashion.
Family Stressors and Adolescents
Therapy Models for Adolescents
In childhood and adolescence, behavioral and emotional disorders depend on immaturity, unformed personality, which is due to the complex interaction of heredity, residual-organic cerebral insufficiency, and the characteristics of training and education. Adequate orientation towards this or that influence – medicinal or psychoeducational – depends on the correct assessment of the role of biological, social, psychological factors. On the one hand, due to the increase in the number of children and adolescents with non-psychotic forms of mental disorders, there is objectively stated a high practical need for the use of approved psycho-educational measures for adolescents with emotional and behavioral disorders by medical institutions, on the other hand, their insufficient theoretical and empirical evidence. All of the above determines the urgency of the problem.
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