New Trends in Psychology, Vol 2, No 1 (2020)

Specific Particularities the Development

of the Children of Ethnicity



Gina Anton1



Abstract: The child in the Roma family is educated in the spirit of fraternity and mutual help, but also of responsibility for others. The principles underlying the education of children are linked to the fact that they are considered miniature adults, endowed from birth with will, desires, emotions and intelligence. To these inherent values is added purity, the only minus being their lack of experience. In the family, children are equal between siblings, no one has the right to feel superior to one another in respect of one another. In a Roma family, the first notions of communication that the child acquires are in the Roma language. At the young age the negative influences of the environment are more easily accepted because the personality structure is more labile. The most important part of the daily program of the child who has become a schoolboy is the one spent in the classroom. It is essential for the overall development of the child. The essential adaptation to the school activities of the child in the first class consists, in particular, in the mobilization of the processes and the psychic skills required by this new form of activity.

Keywords: roma family; child development; Roma language; behaviors; environment; personality; development



Particularities of Development of the Roma Child

The God of the Roma family is the child, the embodiment of absolute purity, the guarantee of the continuity of the nation. The rules of honor and “pakiv” - “respect” prohibit a woman from passing in front of a man, but when she is with a child in her arms she is considered to be purified by the presence of the child and can pass at any time in the face of a man . The Roma child has all the lusts, his wishes being family law.

Training and Education of the Roma Child

The child in the Roma family is educated in the spirit of fraternity and mutual help, but also of responsibility for others. The brothers grow up with each other, which makes them become responsible for the little ones.

Girls have been dealing with household chores since the age of 5-6, with the mother having to leave home to provide daily food.

The boys learn the trades from a young age by assisting and assisting everyone in the work they do, participating in the meetings of the men, and forming their own personality, sometimes having the opportunity to participate in kriss - trials. They have the ability to deal with themselves at a relatively young age which makes them appreciated within the family and in Roma communities.

The principles underlying the education of children are linked to the fact that they are considered miniature adults, endowed from birth with will, desires, emotions and intelligence. To these inherent values is added purity, the only minus being their lack of experience. They enjoy freedom, their progress is encouraged by oversizing and praising, but they are also given small responsibilities. Boys have an obligation to help their father in his job, and girls learn and practice household chores from an early age to become future great-grandchildren. Considered equal to adults, able to understand everything they are told, children are exposed at a young age to stimulants like that of parents. Boys are educated to be strong.

They are taken to an uncle, to their godfather, to an older man from the family or another prestigious relative in the family and they are told, “akuś les, mo, na dara!” , thus training their devel- opment and relational strength. At the violent response of the latter, the boy must demonstrate stoicism, power of control and courage. Thus the defense power, the moral force and the resistance to frustration are educated. As a member of the extended family, with many relatives, the child feels protected in the community, but he must prove that he respects the norms of the family. They can have access to any type of information provided they do not disclose some secrets.

In the family, children are equal between siblings, no one has the right to feel superior to one another, having respect for one another. Only if the family is deprived of the head of the family, that is, the father, then the older brother may feel superior to the rest of the brothers, taking over the leadership of the family.

Language of Communication

In a Roma family, the first notions of communication that the child acquires are in the Roma language. The language of communication, both in the family and in the community, will be the Romance language. Only at the age of 5-6, when the child is urged to do it alone, does he start to learn some important words from the basic vocabulary, he will start talking to the children of the non-Roma neighbors and slowly, he will slowly speak both languages. In his vocabulary there will be very few words used in Romanian until he goes to school.

Through the culture at home, through the mother tongue, the family transmits to the child the sense of identity, the understanding of how to interact with other people, the understanding of the environment. Speech skills at this age are well established for regular communication and thus the verbal flow is increased and the message is coherent and expressive.

The use of mother tongue in the family has negative effects in communicating with non-Roma. The level of thinking and understanding has significant contributions in decoding more complex messages. Some reception difficulties may occur in the Roma child where communication involves bilingualism, that is, in a way, communicates at school and at home. He has a hard time understanding Romanian words and has difficulty expressing himself.



Rules of Behavior

At the young age the negative influences of the environment are more easily accepted because the personality structure is more labile. Many of the behavioral disorders can be avoided by parents if they know the factors that deter them and adopt optimal educational solutions. The lack of supervision of the children, the lack of authority or the tyrannical authority of the parents can lead to behavioral disorders (leaving the home, wandering, theft). Usually such phenomena occur correlates with deficiencies of affectivity which also determines the poor integration of the child in the activity of the group. Permanent stimulation, the creation of mental comfort contributes to the removal of behavioral deviations and to the development of harmonious personality, guarantee of efficient integration into the community life. Upon entering the school, a Roma child should be monitored more closely because he or she was left for a long time to do what he or she wants. Even if in the Roma family, the child is formed with a sense of shame, respect and responsibility, he or she should be trained to interact with other children or adults, beyond the community in which he or she lives. He has respect for the elders of the community or the elders of the community, but he will have to respect the other people he will come in contact with. Parents need to prepare it early, ensuring that it will encounter difficulties in dealing with other children or adults who have prejudices. He will not have to respond to the challenges of other children, who do not understand that a Roma child up to school is raised and formed under the influence of a culture different from that of the majority. Many times, not only non-Roma children do not understand this aspect, but especially the teacher



Adaptation of the Child to the School Environment

Although it is said that once admitted to school, the child has grown up, he cannot consume anything, and his diet should provide him with all the necessary substances for a still intense growth process. It needs three substantial meals and two snacks that must be at the same intervals well established in the daily life program. Eating appetite is slightly disturbed at the beginning of school and during stressful times, but otherwise it is satisfactory. The skills involved in eating behavior and the assurance of personal hygiene, order and cleanliness in the classroom and in the living space are strengthened. All these types of behaviors will find their place only by relating to the periods of learning in the classroom and at home. Also, the small child needs 10 hours of uninterrupted sleep during the night to be able to perform at school. Research has shown that in children who have an inadequate resting state appear drowsiness, difficulty concentrating attention, weakening interest in classroom activities, low overall performance. The family faces a difficult task, namely the rigorous establishment and observance of the daily program by the child himself.

A very important moment in the daily program is the accomplishment of the homework assignments, which must be carried out at the same time in order to form the appropriate habits, that is to say it is easier to install the attention and the general tone required, to strengthen the previous knowledge and working procedures. The child should enjoy the assistance of a parent when he / she learns and solves homework, but he / she should not substitute for it, but to follow the progressive development of autonomy in the work, he / she maintaining the interest only in what and how the children do the role of enhancing their work. The parent must show interest in the child’s school performance, support and enhance the child’s efforts.

Growing up, the little schoolboy needs a lot of movement. After the effort to master, regulate and subordinate the movements of the school tasks, recreation is absolutely mandatory. This short 10-20 minute interval satisfies the needs of movement and relaxation and ensures a good mental tone for the next hour. The same need for movement is also felt after preparing homework. Moving out of the house, meeting other children of the same age, organizing games, training, are absolutely necessary for the normal conduct of school activities, for raising and ensuring the health of children. Such meetings and games may now be replaced by computer games.

With the consolidation of reading skills, in the daily program of the children of the third and fourth class, the favorite readings may also appear. Also in the third and fourth class, especially in the children from the rural area, there may also be some domestic activities through which they help their parents and thus be in a position to “learn by doing” through which the experience is integrated. of life from this age and at the same time, it nourishes the attitudes and occupational skills of later.

The most important part of the daily program of the child who has become a schoolboy is the one spent in the classroom. It is essential for the overall development of the child. Therefore, both the family and the teaching staff are required to pay special attention to prevent and remove dysfunctions that may occur at this age, which could generate negative attitudes towards the school and to some extent compromise its formative effects.

Even the first meeting with the school can leave pleasant or unpleasant traces that latently affect the state of the child when it is in this space. There are sensitive differences between the kindergarten followed previously and this new space where the child is. Research done with older preschoolers has shown that they already have a general representation of a class in which banks are seated one after another, the chair at a significant distance from them, the board is throne on the front wall. According to some researchers, contact with the school institution is equivalent to a kind of affective weaning. Therefore, adapting to this new environment means: a. Integration into the school program and its specific activities; b.realizing a new relationship with the teacher who is such a person than the educator; c. Establishing relationships with those who become colleagues and will always face, and will compare especially, according to the criterion of quality of school performance.

Adaptation to the Program and Types of School Activities

In terms of adapting to the school syllabus and the types of school activities, there may be a number of differences between children. For those who attended kindergarten the adaptation is easier because the dogs were specially trained for this moment. But there are still many children, especially Roma and those with poor financial status who do not attend kindergarten. When I first come to school, I can be more or less afraid of having to stay here, alone, with no one at home. They sometimes refuse to detach themselves from the hand of those who brought them, they have a characteristic twitch that expresses their state of anxiety and tension. I’m on the verge of a crisis of crying. To them, both the conduct of the parent and the teacher, must be that of affective security of the child and even toleration of a requirement that could be absurd. There may also be difficulties with respecting the daily schedule as such, which children need to know is compulsory, especially those who have not been to kindergarten and have not been used to daily activities, they may have strange behaviors . They may refuse to go to school one day. The patience of parents to explain to them the rules of the school regulation and the help that the teacher can give in making the person in question change their attitude, are mandatory conditions for integration without stresses and difficulties in the school regime. If the family interprets this refusal of the child as a sign that he will have problems with it and insists on going to school without explaining to him the meaning of this requirement, the child will feel frustrated with freedom and will always be tempted to retrieve it by school avoidance.

The teachers know very well that their young students have great difficulty in observing the rules for conducting school lessons, regarding keeping order and discipline, carrying out the proposed tasks, paying attention throughout the lesson, mobilizing the appropriate effort to support and conducting learning acts. It takes a lot of pedagogical tact to violate these requirements by ignorance or inability. Too harsh an observation made by teachers, in the first days when those relationships of mutual trust have not yet been woven, can be a lasting moral injury to sensitive children or to those with whom families have very high demands. In these situations, phobias can easily appear in relation to the school, fears that can lead to nightmares, unwanted intimidation, etc.

The essential adaptation to the school activities of the child in the first class consists, in particular, in the mobilization of the processes and the psychic skills required by this new form of activity. It involves the voluntary maintenance of the attention, the quality of the perceptions, the effort of memory and thought, the voluntary adjustment sustained to overcome the obstacles, to complete the activities, etc. All of this is achieved gradually, with patience and tact. Once obtained they become the most important conditions of the increased school performance.



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1 PhD student, minority inspector ISJ Braila, Romania, Adress: nr. 172. A.I. Cuza, Blvd. Braila, Romania, Tel.: +40239619160; Fax: 40239614060, Corresponding author: antongina2004@yahoo.com.

New Trends in Psychology, Vol. 2, no 1/2020, pp. 18-24

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