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Life Span Development Observations from the Film Juno

Life Span Development Observations from the Film Juno

Sample Answer 

Life Span Development Observations from the Film Juno

Description of the Film and Setting

Juno is a 2007 teen comedy focused on the life of a teenage girl, Juno, as she deals with the struggles of transitioning from her childhood to adulthood. At the young age of 16, Juno discovers that she and her boyfriend, Paulie are pregnant. She initially considered an abortion. However, at the last minute at the abortion clinic, she changes her mind and chooses to give birth and put the baby up for adoption. This film circulates around the lives of teenagers Juno and Paulie as they navigate their teenage love, Juno’s pregnancy, and the significant life changes caused by the pregnancy.

Summary of “Normal” Physical, Cognitive and Socioemotional Issues

In the adolescent stage of development, there are several normal physical, cognitive, and socioemotional issues that can be identified. Adolescence is a period of dramatic physical growth as a person transitions from their childhood to adulthood (Jessor & Jessor, 2016). This period is characterized by rapid physical development and sexual maturity. It is known as a period of puberty. There are several cognitive changes that also occur during this stage. According to Piaget’s stages of cognitive development, abstract thought is developed from 15 to 20 years of age (Huitt & Hummel, 2003). During this period, a person develops their ability to make decisions and logically solve problems. Some socioemotional issues are also normal in the adolescent stage of development. The ability to understand abstract concepts such as fear, love, anxiety, and freedom affects a person’s emotions and interactions with their social environment (Huitt & Hummel, 2003).

Observed Physical, Cognitive, and Socioemotional behaviors of the Subjects

In the film Juno, the main character and her boyfriend, Paulie, are the main teenagers of focus. In their life experiences, there are several physical, cognitive, and socioemotional behaviors that are associated with adolescent development which are observable. Both Paulie and Juno have achieved significant physical and sexual development. They engaged in sexual relations that led to Juno’s pregnancy. This kind of development is not normal in younger age groups as their sexual and physical organs are not developed. Their cognitive development is seen in their ability to make logical decisions concerning Juno’s pregnancy. Instead of aborting, she determines that the better decision would be to put the baby up for adoption. Logical decision-making is also a characteristic that is normal in older age groups but not in younger ones. Lastly, Juno and Paulie’s emotional development is seen in their ability to understand the concept of love and choose to be together.

Description of ‘Abnormal Behaviors”

Abnormal behaviors in development refer to those behaviors that defy the expected patterns. These may include unusual patterns of emotions, thoughts, and behaviors that cause a disturbance in the development of a person (Jessor & Jessor, 2016). In the self-titled film, Juno did not show abnormal patterns of behavior. Although some of the experiences of this character may be considered unfavorable, they are the results of normal developmental milestones. For example, pregnancy results from the sexual development that occurs in adolescence. Her irritability and constant fights with her parents before she told them she was pregnant resulted from the emotional changes that occur in adolescence. However, Juno may still need to be referred to a child counselor to learn how to manage these developmental changes better. This is an appropriate strategy to deal with potential negative impacts that may result from the physical, cognitive, and socioemotional changes that are taking place in Juno’s life. Counseling is an appropriate strategy to make her aware of these changes so that she can take an active role in controlling them and preventing their negative effects.

Referral Resources

Facilitating better development over the lifespan requires better intervention from different parties (Heckhausen, Wrosch, & Schulz, 2010). In the case of Juno, several referrals can be used to enhance the quality of her life after the adoption of her child. Individual motivators for a better life can include her parents, counselors, and educators at school. These parties can offer her guidelines to stay on the right track for the rest of her teenage development. She may also need support from community organizations, like the church, if she is from a religious background, and community programs aiming at helping adolescents and youth members to live a better quality of life. Such programs aim to reduce the factors in the teenagers’ environment that may affect their normal development behaviors.


Heckhausen, J., Wrosch, C., & Schulz, R. (2010). A motivational theory of life-span development. Psychological review, 117(1), 32.

Huitt, W., & Hummel, J. (2003). Piaget’s theory of cognitive development. Educational psychology interactive, 3(2), 1-5.

Jessor, R., & Jessor, S. L. (2016). Problem behavior theory and adolescent development. In The Origins and Development of Problem Behavior Theory (pp. 57-72). Springer, Cham.


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Life Span Development Observations from the Film Juno

CRIT Core Assessment 37 (CCA-37) – Assignment 2: Various Life Stages, CACREP Standards Section II G.  a-h

The name of my film is “JUNO”

Your instructor will assign a developmental psychology films or full-length feature films with strong developmental themes. You are to make life span development observations attending to the six items listed below.

  1. A description of the film assigned and the settings that were in the film, number of individuals observed in the film, their ages, activities and interactions with each other. C.II.G.3.e.f.g, AL-ASBE-
  2. Summary of “normal” physical, cognitive, and socioemotional issues encountered by individuals of these ages. C.II.G.3. a,b,e,f,g,h AL-ASBE-

    Life Span Development Observations from the Film Juno

    Life Span Development Observations from the Film Juno

  3. A detailed description of your observations of the physical, cognitive, and socioemotional behaviors of your subjects, as well as a comparison/contrast of the developmental behavior of older and younger populations. C.II.G.3 e. f. g. h.
  4. A careful description of any “abnormal” behaviors in your subjects, if any, and a description of appropriate professional referrals. C.II.G.3 a,b,e,f,g,h AL-ASBE-
  5. Include the following and information related to:
    • a) developmental crises, disability, psychopathology, situational/environmental factors related to abnormal behavior; b) theories and etiology of addictions and addictive behaviors, including strategies for prevention, intervention and treatment, and c) theories for facilitating optimal development and wellness over the lifespan. C.II.G.3. a,b,e,f,g,h
  6. A specific referral list, to include individual, cultural, group, couple, and community resources, located in your designated area. Please include resources needed due to the effects of a crisis, disaster and other trauma causing events. C.II.G.3.C.D.

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