Park University Lifespan Development Cognitive Functioning Discussion


We now know that there are many factors to consider when it comes to expertise, and this age group often serves as a source of knowledge and experience. Cognitive aging happens, and much is dependent upon the physical health and social functioning of older adults. Having lived for 65+ years, they definitely have some great stories to share.


Please respond to the following:

  • Recall a favorite story from an older person in your life. Tell as much of it as you can remember.
  • Does he or she have more than one favorite story?
  • Do you notice similarities and differences in stories (i.e., are they from the same age group, personal or historical events, does the story change when told again)?
  • What would your text have to say about the cognitive functioning of this individual?


Marion Greene III

My great-grandfather who passed away in 2019 always used to tell me stories from the Korean war and how things were for blacks back then. I am not sure how old he was when he passed away, but if you asked him he would say 20 so I’ll stick with that. He told me stories of how Korean women loved U.S. soldiers even back then. He never told me details of the war just the good times he had. One thing he for sure would tell you about is how much something used to cost back in his time. Especially, something like mild or bread. We always walked, talked, or ate pizza while he told stories. Sometimes he would forget what he was saying, because he would fall asleep from being so full from pizza, garlic breadsticks, cinnamon sticks, and a Pepsi. He enjoyed telling stories of being a black cowboy. He has a small shed at his house till this day from where he used to keep his horse. It’s funny my grandmother would say some of the stuff he told me in the stories were not true, but I had no clue I could only go by his word.

Timothy Eikom

My story will be one from my dad, who is 72. One of his favorite stories to tell is about his 21st birthday. His 21st birthday was not a typical one. He was from a city but spent a lot of time with relatives working on a farm in North Dakota. I’m semi surprised at the detail he remembers from 50 years ago. He and his cousin got up at 0530 to have breakfast and start working. He then left to go put a barbed wire fence in a pasture by the Cheyenne river. They got back to the farm around 1130 that morning to get lunch (or dinner as they call it out there). After lunch, they went and bailed hay for three or four hours. When they were finished with that, they came in and had supper (dinner). His uncle Ted then told him to go to the field across the road and finish doing the plowing he had started the day before. He finished it around 1030 pm then unhooked the plow and parked the tractor and find his cousins waiting for him to celebrate his birthday. His aunt made spice cake and he got a few presents then went to sleep around midnight. He says it was a strange birthday, but one of his fondest memories in his life.

I am surprised at the details he still remembers from 50 years ago and when he tells his stories, his details don’t change much. I feel like I can barely remember details from a week ago. According to Whitbourne and Whitbourne in our text, “However, some aspects of memory, such as autobiographical memory and remembering procedures for tasks, do not decline with age” (Kraynok, 2017).


Kraynok, M. C., Seifert, K., Hoffnung, R. J., & Hoffnung, M. (2017). Lifespan development. Academic Media Solutions.

Edited by Timothy Eikom on Jul 21 at 11:48am 

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