Teen Dreams

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Image result for puberty brain

Due by Thursday  

This documentary has concepts from Chapters 1-3. 

Watch the documentary, available in three segments here:

Part one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gT9g0_42-r0

Part two: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Szl4D2Z-MvY

Part three: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltJXmjcxCyg

 

Next, write your comment. Your comment does not need to provide an overview of the movie (we have all seen it). Your comment should be an in-depth analysis of one or more principles from your text. You should use scenes and characters to provide examples of textbook concepts. Your comment should reflect that you are in an upper division, university level Motivation and Emotion course and clearly link elements from the movie to the textbook.  This is a comprehensive assignment (linking course lectures, textbook, and the movie) and you cannot do that in just a few short paragraphs. You response should be about 500 words.

BE SPECIFIC. At the bottom of your comment, please put a list of the ME terms you used. 

42 Comments

This film portrays motivation in a biological sense. “Teen Dreams” displays that the function of behavior is to service bodily needs, know as the grand theory of drive. In the film, almost every action performed by either Natalie or Darren is seen as a result of their sex drive energizing and directing them to attract a mate and further their species.
The film shows these stimulating factors by going through the biology behind puberty, using characters Natalie and Darren as examples. Gonadotrophins, hormone messengers, are released into Darren and Natalie’s bodies at puberty telling the body it is time to start making sex hormones. In Darren, gonadotrophins turn on testosterone production. This testosterone seeps into previously dormant cells triggering a chemical reaction in the reproductive part of the male brain - turning on his sex drive. In Natalie, gonadotrophins awaken the ovaries, turning on estrogen production which circulates through the body telling it to mature. This hormone also matures the mind, creating stronger emotions that Natalie must then learn to cope with. These emotions are considered internal motives; internal processes that energize and direct behavior. Another internal motive would be needs; or things that are essential for the maintenance of life. In this video, an example of a need would be sex - or at least, that is what their hormones are telling Natalie and Darren.
While estrogen may help the female body mature, testosterone is what is needed to turn on the female sex drive. Just as females need testosterone, males need estrogen. Male bodies convert excess testosterone into estrogen. This estrogen stimulates the growth plates located in Darren’s arms and legs, making him grow taller. Biology, in this case, helps us answer the first of the two perennial questions involved in the study of motivation; what causes behavior? In this video, the behaviors of Natalie and Darren are driven by their hormones. The hormones in their body are rushing around and causing them to behave in ways they previously wouldn't; doing things they believe will attract the opposite sex.
These sex hormones are not just responsible for the maturing of the inside of the body, testosterone and estrogen trigger changes within the body meant to make it more attractive on the outside to potential mates, and therefore increasing chances of reproduction. The testosterone in Darren’s blood stimulated the growth of muscle fibers, making him look stronger and more powerful. In Natalie, estrogen-stimulated cells in her breast tissue and hips to begin sucking fat out of her blood, making her more curvaceous and therefore more likely to attract male attention. The same can be said for testosterone’s stimulation of hair growth on both Darren and Natalie’s bodies. Hair soaks up sweat, allowing the scent to become more powerful. Before contemporary times, this would also help attract a mate, but now our population is more concerned with hygiene.
Now that estrogen has told Natalie’s body it is time to mature, her body has set itself up on a regular clock. Every month, gonadotropins stimulate follicles within her ovaries to grow, with one growing larger than any other. The follicles saturate the body with estrogen which travels to the womb cells and tell them to multiply, making her body ready to care for a fertilized egg. As estrogen is changing Natalie’s body and emotions, testosterone is doing it’s best to cultivate qualities that could help Darren reproduce, heightening his competitiveness and ability to assert himself. Darren’s soaring testosterone levels also increase his aggression. This is helped along by the fact that the circuit for sex and the circuit for aggression overlap in the male brain. This reverts back to when your ability to fight for a mate increased your chances of reproduction, though, in the movie, Darren fighting with David does nothing to attract Natalie. This film shows how the process of maturation is centered around the idea of reproduction. All the different changes our bodies go through are to prepare the body for sex and to make us more attractive to others who may be willing to reproduce with us. The biological agents in our bodies - like hormones and neurotransmitters released at the time of puberty stimulate specific brain structures that affect our emotions, making us more likely to do something out of the norm - like Darren joining the school musical - in an effort to attract attention from the opposite sex. While the motivation behind the biological portion of puberty is clear, what we must remember is that motivation cannot be separated from the context in which it is embedded. So, though puberty and the behaviors associated with it are energized and driven by biological factors, we must remember to also analyze them within the social context they are performed.

Terms: motivation, behavior, emotion, drive, energize, direct, hormones, testosterone, estrogen, neurotransmitters, social context, two perennial questions, internal motive, needs

While this film focused mainly on the transformations that individuals go through during puberty, it was interesting to discover how motivated behavior is produced through an increase in hormones in the body. Both Darren and Natalia experienced an increase in testosterone and estrogen levels, but these two specific hormones affected them differently and at different times. These hormones produced a biological drive for sex in both the teens.

Both grand theories on drive do a great job in explaining why Darren was motivated to fight with David in front of Natalia at the mall. Freud’s theory on drive would suggest that the source of Darren’s drive is an increased level of testosterone, which fills him with more aggression and causes him to display competitive behaviors. The impetus of the situation would be when David makes fun of Darren’s higher pitched voice. To work out this increased aggression, Darren launches himself toward David to fight. His unconscious aim in this situation was to decrease his level of aggression, which occurred when Darren gets the upper hand by pinning down David. Hull’s theory of drive can also explain the motivation behind Darren fighting with David, particularly when predicting that Darren was motivated to fight before the fight occurred. Darren’s strength of behavior, in this case aggression, was high in the presence of David because David was seen as mating “competition”. At this time, Darren’s habit strength, or probability of a particular drive-reducing response, was relatively low because Darren was highly motivated to release aggression and show that he was better than his competition, making his drive high. Some could argue that there were external sources of motivation during this situation as well for Darren, like proving to Natalia that he was a better mate than David. Interestingly, these behaviors can be traced back millions of years ago, which may suggests that the grand theory on instincts motivates Darren and David to fight each other.

Neurotransmitters played a big part in the development of both Darren and Natalia. These chemical messengers were able to tell both of their bodies when they should start producing testosterone or estrogen as well as when to be aggressive or overly emotional, like in the case of Natalia having dinner with her family. I also thought about different structures of the brain that played a role in their motivated behaviors, and more specifically, their emotional reactions. It is fair to say that the amygdala may have produced feelings of anger, fear, and defensive behaviors in both Darren and Natalia. When Darren’s voice squeaks during the performance, it is quite possible that his amygdala was processing the negative emotions and reacted with feelings of fear, making it difficult for Darren to finish his lines. Darren’s limbic system received Natalia’s body odor scent, and after the information was processed, Darren’s emotional reaction was that of disgust. Dopamine may have been in effect for Natalia when she was auditioning for the play. She knew that if she auditioned for the play, she would get the chance to spend more time with David, whom she had a crush on. The rush of dopamine motivated her to audition for the play.

Terms: Testosterone, estrogen, Freud’s Drive Theory, source, impetus, aim, Hull’s Drive Theory, drive, habit, instinct, neurotransmitters, amygdala, limbic system, dopamine

As the film first mentioned the goal of any human, and more general any organism, is to transfer their genes to the next generation. Whether this decision is conscious or unconscious the motivation is there. In humans this is accomplished via reproduction but how do you make an organism want to reproduce? The film looked to answer this question.

To be successful as an organism humans not only must be able to reproduce but also be motivated to do so. We must have internal motives, an internal process that energizes and directs behavior, to reproduce. In the film the desire or internal motivation for sex is created by the hormone testosterone. Sexual drive is created by testosterone in men but women also need a small amount of the hormone for sexual drive as well. In this sense reproduction is a need, a condition within the individual that is essential and necessary for the maintenance of life, growth, and well-being. The desire for reproduction could also be seen as a cognition: a mental event such as thoughts, beliefs, expectations, and self-concept. Maybe we are motivated to reproduce because of self-worth or it is important to our self-image. Maybe someone wants to be a father. The desire for sex in this case is not so much a need but because it is required to reach a specific goal of being a father.

As mentioned earlier, for humans to be a successful organism they must reproduce. This means they must be capable and have the desire to do so. This is a perfect example of the motivational themes discussed in chapter 1. Motivation benefits adaptation, motives direct attention, and motives vary over time are all themes represented. Obviously his desire to have sex is an important adaptation that allows him to successful maintain life, growth and well-being proving motivation benefits adaptation. Motivation to reproduce directed Darren to pursue Natalia in the film which is an example of motives directing attention. Finally, Darren and Natalia growing up and dealing with sexual desires is an example of motives varying over time. Before puberty they were concerned with other things besides sexual reproduction.

Lastly, the film explains some of the biological process surrounding puberty and sexual maturation. Chapter 3 gives three principles that guide brain-based motivational processes. One principle that was not directly spoken about but implied by the video was that idea that specific brain structures generate specific motivations. In the film it was mentioned that testosterone made in the testicles will travel to the brain activating what they called the “reproductive circuit”. This “reproductive circuit” could be a part of the hypothalamus which is the part of the brain important in biological functions such as eating and drinking but also sex. The film also mentioned how the brain will send gonadotrophins that move through the circulatory system to the ovaries of a female and help produce a mature egg. We could assume these gonadotrophins are follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinising hormone (LH) which stimulate ovarian follicle/egg growth and release of mature egg from the ovaries respectively. It is important to notice that the pituitary gland which is controlled by the hypothalamus.

One final scene I feel is pertinent to mention while speaking about neurotransmitters and hormones. At one point in the film Darren and David get in a fight at a shopping mall. In this fight Darren ends up beating David. In the scene you see David smiling. This could possibly be an example of the neurotransmitter dopamine being released in the brain. An unexpected reward in beating David in the fight causes release of Dopamine which makes Darren feel good.

Terms:
Motivation, internal motives, needs, cognitions, motivational themes (3), brain-based motivational principles (1), testosterone, hypothalamus, pituitary gland, luteinising hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, neurotransmitter, dopamine

In these series of movies the author talked about puberty and what occurs over time. Puberty starts at a young age, but when preparing for puberty that starts even younger. Puberty starts at night, when your brain is firing while also resting. When boy’s bodies start this process their hormones are released into the bloodstream at around the age of ten. Testosterone soaks through the reproductive system, making him indirectly wanting sex, but he is not fully aware that, that is what his body wants. When this occurs in girls the genitals start to grow and mature. They start to produce more hormones and those as well start to seek into the bloodstream. Estrogen is starting to make permeant change in her body. This is causing new connections to be formed. For men, their hormone levels soar at night as well as their over stimulated reproductive system. Also, and extra testosterone in men is turned into estrogen. As these occur the bodies change and mature, once they reach a certain point in their own body they will grow pubic hair. She got her period and his voice changed, while also growing a lot.
The film shows characteristics of expressions of motivation. Behavior can be expressed in many of ways, such as attention, effort, choice, and facial expression. In the film Natalia asks her parents if she can get a tattoo, and they said no. She got mad and threw a fit, but what I thought was interesting was that the narrator said that she will not be able to control her anger for a while due to her higher levels of estrogen. The next expression of motivation is engagement. Engagement can be defined as displays on-task attention and enduring persistence. A good example of this would be that Darren had a crush on Natalia and found out she was in the play. He auditioned and made it. He had a crush on her and did multiple acts to show her he did. He fought the boy at the mall and beat him out of the play. These are only a few ways he showed persistence throughout the film. The next expression of motivation I’m going to talk about it brain activations and physiology. This can be described as engaging in activities and releases of hormones. There are many examples of when hormones are released, but the one that I remember most is toward the end of the last clip when his voice cracks while he is singing.
Another topic discussed in the film is a rather obvious one, testosterone. When we think of testosterone we tend to think it is only in men, but that is false because women have it in them as well. In the book it states that testosterone has to do with high levels of sexual motivation which is true in both girls and boys. A good example of this is when Darren is watching Natalia audition for the play, the narrator states that his testosterone is building making him want to have sex. A good example for Natalia is when she goes up to David and he asks her out, at the moment she had a lot of testosterone encouraging her to go up and talk to him.
The hypothalamus has a lot occurring when the body is going through puberty. The hypothalamus is known for hunger, thirst, and sex. They didn’t exactly mention hunger in the film specifically, but they did say that as they are both growing their bones are increasing length as a faster than normal rate. With this occurring these kids going through puberty are eating more and more frequently. Sex is another thing that they talk a lot about in the film. The hypothalamus secretes hormones that enter into the blood stream and cause our body to change and react to every situation. A good example of sex was mentioned earlier when Darren was watching Natalia audition for the part in the play.

Terms: expression of motivation; behavior, engagement, brain activation and physiology, testosterone, hypothalamus.

Testosterone. The book describes testosterone as being associated with high sexual motivation; it underlies the mating effort, such as the time and energy investment into same-sex competition and mate-seeking behavior. Darren shows the increase of testosterone by becoming sexually interested in Natalie, fighting and competing with David, and joining the play to try to make Natalie like him. Around 2:50 during the third video, it says that aggression and sex drive overlap; this is because testosterone is involved in the actions of both. As testosterone increases, aggression and sex drive both increase; if an individual does not know how to control it, then he will act on both. The book uses the examples of a successful Wall Street stockbroker or a cheating husband to show what increased of testosterone may look like from an aggression and sex drive overlap, while the movie uses the examples that Darren fought with David at the mall and got an erection when he was touched accidentally in the water, among other examples.
While Freud’s drive theory has lost acceptance, it may be applied here; Freud attributes actions to the physiological changes in our body, which is a major part of what causes actions during teen years. According to Freud’s Drive Theory, testosterone was what was causing Darren’s drive, or actions. The source of Darren’s drive within his body’s physiology was the increased level of testosterone as he hit puberty. The impetus, or force, that was driving Darren was his increased sexuality that came from his increased testosterone. The object that Darren chose to seek out was Natalie, because she represented a way for his sexuality to be relieved. Lastly, he did not achieve his drive’s aim of relieving his sexuality, at least not that the movie says; he was able to kiss Natalie during the play, so if his sex drive was not too heightened, then that may have caused the satisfaction that he was aiming for.


“Shallow’s in.” Around 8:00 in part two, Natalie and Simone say, “shallow’s in” when they are criticizing David trying to touch her boobs and touching her butt. Despite the fact that they both know that David is shallow, Natalie continues to go out with him. Chapter two of the book dives nine perspectives that can motivate our behavior, and a few of them could be applied here. From a physiological perspective, Natalie’s hormonal activities may cause her to like David’s actions, but strictly from a physiological sense; she may not like that he is trying to take advantage of her, but her body itself may like the male attention that she is receiving, if her sex drive is also increased. Additionally, from a social-cognitive perspective, she may enjoy the attention that she receives from other people because she is dating the most attractive boy at the school; by dating the most attractive boy, she receives positive attention from others who want to be like her. Lastly, from a cultural perspective, our culture sometimes encourages us to be shallow; unless an individual does not conform to social norms, we want the best looking clothes and technology and mates, so she stays with David because he seems to represent the best of everything that our society deems as important.

Terms: testosterone, aggression, sex drive, Freud's drive theory, physiological perspective, social-cognitive perspective, cultural perspective

The big link between Chapter 3 and Teen Dreams is the discussion of hormones and brain structures (ex. the reproductive circuit). As we all know, puberty especially is a stage in life where hormones are uncontrollable and very influential. These hormones motivate behaviors that we often are unconscious of our true reasons for. Specific hormones discussed in Teen Dreams are testosterone and estrogen. Young teens Darren and Natalie, as well as their classmates, are great examples of physiological needs and sources and their influence on emotion and behavior.

Testosterone has big impacts in multiple areas. One specific area would be sexual motivation and mate-seeking behavior. One example is Darren changing the posters in his room to pictures of women, a behavior that is motivated by his sex drive. For another example, when Darren sees Natalie during play auditions, he develops a crush on her because testosterone and his reproductive circuit have given him a heightened sex drive. Much of Darren’s following behavior is motivated by his crush on Natalie. Natalie also has a sex drive because of testosterone, which motivates her interest in dating David, initially.

Testosterone also affects competitive and aggressive behavior. Darren’s testosterone motivates him to engage in same-sex competition with David for Natalie’s attention, which motivates him to demand to be in the play. Testosterone also leads to aggressive behavior between Darren and David, shown when they get in a fight while competing for Natalie’s attention at the mall. Additionally, David makes fun of Darren’s pimples in front of Natalie because testosterone has caused him to feel like he’s in competition with Darren and he wants to look like the more attractive option for Natalie. Also, Darren and David’s testosterone levels are higher because they are not yet in committed relationships.

The hormone estrogen also has its effects on behavior. For example, Natalie’s argument with her parents over getting a tattoo was motivated by estrogen stimulating nerve endings in her brain to make connections and cause powerful and uncontrollable new emotions. Drops in estrogen affect her mood, causing her to ignore David’s phone calls and refuse to go out with him due to the discomfort her period brings.

Brain structures discussed in the book, though not explicitly discussed in the video, may also have had an affect on Darren and Natalie’s behavior. The orbitofrontal cortex and anterior cingulate cortex were likely involved when Natalie has to choose between the options of Darren or David. The amygdala may have been involved when Darren is afraid to say his line in the play after his voice shakes. The septal area, which is related to sex, is an approach-orientated structure that was probably involved in motivating Darren and Natalie’s approach to sexual desire instead of avoidance of it.

As Chapter 3 pointed out, these brain processes are related to the social context in which they occur. Darren and Natalie’s motivations came not just from physiological factors of the brain but also the world in which their brains were functioning. They may behave differently from other thirteen year olds undergoing the same hormonal changes who live in other communities. For example, Darren hesitates to kiss Natalie during play practice not because he doesn’t like her but because he is put off by her bad body odor- but in contexts where hygiene is less important, a person may not avoid kissing another person no matter how poorly they smell.

In conclusion, it is important that we can recognize that our own, and other people’s, behavior can be motivated by unconscious processes of the brain, rather than purely conscious motives.

Terms: hormones, brain structures, unconscious, emotion, testosterone, sexual motivation, physiological needs, same-sex competition, mate-seeking behavior, orbitofrontal cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, amygdala, septal area, social context

It was interesting to watch the changes that took place in Darren and Natalie over the course of the documentary film. You see the dramatic physical and physiological changes that take place as they mature from childhood into teenagers. The more interesting changes occur as their motivations change as they began to mature. The motivation to play in the backyard changes to eventually to the motivation to act on their sexual desires.
When Darren decides that he will participate in the play, his motivation is driven by the prefrontal cortex. The conscious decision to participate comes from his desire to be closer to Natalie. He also wants to shows her a different side of himself, more creative and mature attributes, in an effort to prove that he is no longer just the boy next door. This personality dimension is referred to as Behavioral Activation System in an effort to “feel good” and to feel a sense of achievement.
When Darren gets selected to play Romeo in the play, he feels a sense of pride and overall good feelings. This is due to the Dopamine that is released from his hypothalamus, which results in this emotional positivity. From the release of dopamine, Darren’s realizes that these such accomplishments, such as winning the role of Romeo, is rewarding and that similar occurrences in the future will result in those same positive feelings. This release of dopamine acts as a neural mechanism that motivation gets translated into actions.
In the documentary, we also hormones in action in both Darren and Natalie. Both characters experience the effects of the powerful sex hormones, Testosterone and Estrogen. In the film, we see that testosterone begins to change the way Darren acts, his physically appearance, the way he thinks, his motivations, and even the way his voice sounds. We even see that Darren becomes more aggressive toward other males, Blane in particular. We see Darren’s aggression, when after some comments made by Blane in the Mall, Darren tackles Blane and eventually ends-up pinning him down on the ground. This behavior is very typical for teenage boys, but eventually this aggression is minimized as they mature. Darren and Blane also compete for the attention of Natalie at various points of the film. This is also an action that is driven by testosterone.
Testosterone also fuels Darren desire to be closer to Natalie and to gain her favor. Many of the actions the Darren does, participating in the play, trying to gain time with Natalie, and just being closer to her are all mate-seeking behaviors. This biological drive can be very strong and many times actions taken can be non-typical or out of the ordinary for some males.
Another hormone that we see in action in the film is Cortisol, the “stress hormone”. Cortisol is naturally released in the body when the brain senses physical or mental stress. Biological stress is sometimes prevalent during demanding physical activities. When cortisol is released during those activities, it is used to convert fat cells into energy, fat oxidation. During times of mental stress, cortisol can mimic the effects of the “fight or flight” response. This results in elevated heart rate, nervousness and can inhibit the release of serotonin in the brain. Cortisol is release by hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical system in response to the stressor. We see at many point of the film the effects of cortisol on Darren and Natalie as the suffer from a mental stressor.
Terms: Prefrontal Cortex, Behavioral Activation System, Dopamine, Testosterone, Estrogen, Mate-Seeking Behaviors, Cortisol, Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenocortical System, Serotonin.

Jarye Bah
Motivation and Emotion
Teen Dreams
The documentary portrays the changes of one’s body through biology and motivation. The documentary explains what causes behavior and what changes it over time. Darren and Natalie are neighbors who when they were younger played together, but as their body changes their behavior toward each other changes. The documentary explains that our sex drive motivates us to perform an action. The Grand theory explains the full range of motivated action, for example; why we eat, drink, work play and compete, fall in love and so on. Charles Darwin determined that instinct was the cause of behavior, but the documentary stated otherwise. In the biological sense, and according to the documentary behavior is motivated by our sex drive. From the moment we were born, our agenda is to find a mate and reproduce, that is our main purpose. According to Sigmund Freud’s drive theory; drive motivated whatever behavior was instrumental to serving our body’s needs, it was one that understood that the functions of behavior was to service our bodily needs. When Darren’s gonadotropins seeped out, it triggered his cells to make the sex hormone testosterone which triggered his body to change from boy to a man. Darren id now able to reproduce, his sex drive is finally turned on. When Natalie’s gonadotropins awakened in her ovaries turning on her estrogen, it was telling her body is mature is enough to reproduce although after her first period her body wasn’t mature enough to reproduce, but by her second period it.
Both Darren’s and Natalie’s sex hormones are activated, now they are ready reproduce. Testosterone is what is needed to activate the female sex hormones although it needs estrogen to mature. Because estrogen it higher in females and lower in males, that is why females mature faster than male, both estrogen and testosterone in need in both male and females. When Natalie was seen with another boy, Darren’s increase in his testosterone makes jealous of Natalie’s male friend David. In Darren’s eyes, David was seen as a mating competition. Darren’s instinct was to fight off the completion, hence when he fought David in the mall, he was fighting for his rightful place, which is by Natalie’s side as his mate. In chapter 3, the biological process that tried to understand the brain based motivational process by listing three principles. The first principle was that specific brain structures generate specific motivation, meaning it stimulates one part of the hypothalamus, which in this case would be the sex hormones in Darren and Natalie. The second principle stated that biochemical agents stimulate specific brain structures, the biochemical agents that stimulate these receptors are neurotransmitters and hormones. When Darren and David fought in the mall, Darren overpowered him and he smiles which is the result of dopamine releasing in the brain, dopamine generates good feeling and reward. The Third principle states that day-to day events stir biochemical agents into action. While the knowledge of how to the brain works helps us understand motivation and emotion, we still need to link the events in our lives to brain activation.

Terms: motivation, testosterone, estrogen, drive, instinct, hypothalamus, dopamine, neurotransmitter, the three principles of the motivational brain, the grand theories, hormones.

Our body plays a huge role in the process of motivation and emotions. Teen Dreams goes through the process of puberty of both boys and girls. This is essential because it affects them in different ways, both physically and emotionally. This documentary talks about a lot of subjects that are also listed in the textbook. For example, on page sixty-seven of the textbook, we see what hormones are and what they do. The main hormone is testosterone, which is associated with high sexual motivation. With hormones, comes new emotions that are hard to understand. In Teen Dreams, Darren, Natalia, and David, all are experiencing different emotions. However, we only really focus on Darren and Natalia.
We see this concept first introduced in the first part of the video when Darren and Natalia are both children. We learn that puberty starts before any outward signs appear. This process starts in the brain when a group of cells are activated and chemicals are released into the person’s bloodstream, these chemicals are called hormones. After a few years, testosterone helps change a boy’s body into a man’s body. In this process, according to the film, Darren now has a sexual drive and now has desire to pursue Natalie. It also makes the individual more competitive and more aggressive when finding a mate, which is also driven by motivation. We see this from the aggression and competitiveness that come between Darren and David in the last part of the film when all the teenagers are at the mall. However, we also see it when Darren first realizes that he is interested in Natalia and decided to try-out for the school play, which leads into taking David’s spot in the musical.
Hormones in girls are a little different. The main hormone that they have is estrogen, and this isn’t mentioned in chapter three of the textbook. However, it is still vital in the terms of motivation. Estrogen, like testosterone (which girls also have), also develops sexual maturity. According to the film, estrogen makes inactive parts of the brain “come to life.” This motivates the individual to have new and different emotions that are hard to control at first. Like Darren, Natalia also realizes how to select a mate and originally chooses David. Both boys and girls have to learn about the new changes in their bodies and learn how to control the emotions that come with those changes.
This film does a great job in connecting with the information that we are learning in class. Puberty and hormones, which go hand-in-hand, have a huge impact on our motivation and emotions. The human brain also changes along with the human body, and as the brain changes, our focus also changes. As Team Dreams progresses, we see that the main emotions are the crushes that happen between the main characters and confusion. They don’t fully understand what is happening or what they are feeling, even Natalia has an internal struggle of whether to choose Darren or David in her dreams.

Terms: Motivation, Emotion, Hormones, Testosterone, Estrogen, Brain, Desire

The connection between the textbook and Teen Dreams is a discourse of how internal motives, brain structure, and hormones play a key role on how someone’s motivations and emotions are affected during puberty. The movie mainly focused on the effects of testosterone, and the effects of this hormone seen in the characters Darren, Natalie, and their schoolmates. The movie is a good example of motivation from physiological needs (life, growth, and well-being) and from a biological view.

Internal motives are part of the processes that vitalize and direct one’s behavior such as one’s cognition (thoughts), needs (well-being), and emotions. Cognition is a source of motivation that revolves around the way a person thinks, which can include plans and goals. An example of cognition from the movie, was Darren’s main objective, which was to be with Natalie. Darren even had a plan to join the school musical just so he can be with Natalie. Need is a source of motivation that revolves around belongingness, an essential to physiological needs. A great example from the movie was with Natalie when she starts to wear makeup to fit in with her classmates at school, all of which have started to wear makeup as well. Emotions can be defined as expressive phenomena that are short lived, and throughout the movie there are a range of emotion that are developed by both Darren and Natalie as they go through puberty.

Internal motives are partly due to a biological aspect of hormones. Hormones play a large role in how one’s motivations and emotions are portrayed. One hormone that affects teenagers during puberty is testosterone. Testosterone influences competition and aggression, and it is responsive to environmental situations. One example of the influence of testosterone is when Darren competes for Natalie’s attention by fighting with David. Both boys ideally want to have Natalie as their own. Their behavior can be explained by the sudden surge of testosterone that is associated with puberty.

Hormones also play into one’s sexual motivation, which can associate with one’s physiological needs. An example of a sexual motivation is seen when Darren moves through his teen years and the posters in his room reflect his interests. At first, the posters are of fish, but by the end, he has posters of women on his walls. These posters reflect Darren’s increasing sexual drive. Additionally, throughout the movie, Darren’s actions are driven by his sexual drives for Natalie. An example of this would be when you first meet Darren and Natalie in the movie they are little kids, and as they get older Darren makes small moves showing his interest for Natalie, like waiting at the door to walk to school with her. As Darren becomes a teenager, his body is producing more testosterone, and Darren starts to make bigger gestures for his sex drive for Natalie, like joining the musical.

Hormones are a biological agent that makes a connections with the nerves in your body that send a message to your brain to help exemplify and contribute to motivations and emotions. The limbic system is a major brain structure that is involved in motivation and emotion. Part of the limbic system includes the cerebral cortex (regulating of motivation and emotions), which was likely involved when Darren is with Natalie, but there are other people around her, so Darren has to be incontrol. The Hypothalamus (regulating biological functions), would likely be active as Darren goes through puberty. In his room, one could see how his poster selections reflect his motivations and emotions. The amygdala (threatening events) possibly could have been involved when Darren was too afraid to say his lines on stage after his voice cracked. His amygdala may have also been involved when Darren and Natalie were talking about what tattoo Natalie should get. Darren was unable to speak, which reflects the functioning of the reproductive circuit.

In conclusion, from the content of the textbook and movie, it is vital to note that there are many biological agents and internal processes that contribute to the way someone presents motivations and emotions. They are not always conscious, and it would be a mistake to believe that a person’s motivation is solely due to external motives only. Teen Dreams displays the effect of both biological influence and unconscious influence from the brain on motivations and emotions.

Terms: Internal Motives, Brain Structure, Hormones, Psychological needs, Cognitive, Needs, Emotions, Limbic system, Cerebral cortex, Hypothalamus, Amygdala

This film, “Teenage Dreams”, outlines the general process leading to puberty. It describes the actions of the chemical production and release during this time and the behaviors that are associated with this process. The examples used in this film, Darren and Natalie, demonstrate the changes that happen in the body during puberty such as increased chemicals in the blood, changes in the brain and cognition, as well as an introduction of a sex drive. As Darren and Natalie progress through puberty and begin to mature, the motivations behind their actions begin to change and are influenced by new factors such as the sex drive and increased hormones.
When Darren sees Blane getting close to Natalie because they are both in the play, two parts of the brain are directly involved in the next few actions of Darren: the amygdala and the cerebral cortex.
The amygdala is responsible for detecting and responding to threatening and emotionally significant events. When Darren saw a blooming relationship between Blane and Natalie, he became jealous, activating the amygdala. The amygdala sends out many projections when it is activated, but very few of them are returned which creates an imbalance. This imbalance explains why emotions, especially negative ones, generally overpowers cognition rather than cognition overpowering emotion. This imbalance would also explain why Darren made the impulsive decision to try out for the play. He was acting on the overpowering emotions rather than the cognitions. The other part of the brain involved in the situation was the cerebral cortex. The cerebral cortex is associated with motivational and emotional states such as thinking itself as motivationally and emotionally generating including actions like making plans or setting a goal. Although Darren was acting on his emotions in particularly anger and jealousy, using his cerebral cortex, Darren created a plan to get closer to Natalie which meant trying out for role of Romeo in the school play.
Later on, when Darren found out that he had, indeed, gotten the part of Romeo, his mood quickly changed to ecstatic due to his body releasing dopamine which generated the good feelings. When an unexpected positive event occurs, the neurotransmitter, Dopamine, is released and circulated in the brain. In turn, the Dopamine stimulates the limbic structures which creates the good feelings, pleasure, and positive affect. This process of dopamine release into the brain occurred when Darren found out that his plan had worked and he got the part of Romeo in the play which would get him closer to Natalie.
Hormones, testosterone and estrogen, played a big role in not only the explanation of the development of the reproductive systems, but also in the lives of Darren and Natalie. Although both males and females contain both hormone, males have more testosterone and females have more estrogen. Darren's increased levels of testosterone caused him to display more aggressive and competitive behaviors. In the mall when Blane was making fun of Darren, Darren charged and tackled Blane demonstrating this increased aggression. A fight ensued because of the presence of more than one male with increased aggression. This presence of testosterone is also responsible for many physical changes as well. It caused Darren to grow taller, grow leg and arm hair, growth of muscle fibers, and a deeper voice.
On the other hand, Natalie has more estrogen which lead to more emotional behaviors. When Natalie was at the dinner table with her parents, she had an outburst because her parents told her no to getting a tattoo. The increased level of estrogen in her body caused her to react in an emotional manner. Like with Darren and testosterone, estrogen causes physical changes in Natalie meant to make her more attractive to possible mates. The increased estrogen caused the production of underarm and pubic hair and growth in breast and hip tissues. Along with these changes, the body set a monthly clock so that every month around the same time, the gonadotropins stimulate follicles in her ovaries to grow giving Natalie her period which signifies maturity and ability to reproduce.

Terms: Motivation, Amygdala, Emotion, Cerebral Cortex, Dopamine, Neurotransmitter, Limbic Structures, Hormones, testosterone, estrogen, ovaries, gonadotropins, reproduction

This documentary focuses mainly on the neurological and physiological aspects motivation and emotion in relation to the changes that Darren and Natalie go through in their most crucial stages of life, puberty. Specifically, we can see a correlation between general idea of grand theories and more specifically it relates well to Freud’s Drive Theory. I will be using what we learnt of hormones, neurons and the brain structures to discuss how the motivators and motives of Darren and Natalie could have caused their behavior as well as their physiological changes.

To start off, it was the gonadotropin secretion in the brain for both individuals that started a chain reaction. The release of these hormones caused Darren’s brain to give the signal to start producing sex hormones, which firstly made the reproduction circuit and eventually lead to over production testosterone that made Darren’s body and mind aware of his sexual needs. These needs lead to high levels aggression as well as an ability to get stimulated by an external environment easily. To put in words of Freud’s Drive Theory, the production of testosterone was the source, the aggression/sexual arousal was the impetus, the object was anything that stimulated that behavior (getting into a fight with David/ being attracted to Natalie) and the aim was to achieve homeostasis on the levels of testosterone. It was his biological needs that were driving him to act and try to satisfy the discrepancy in his body. We can say this because testosterone has been known to motivate same-sex competition and make seeking behavior.

With Natalie, the case was similar but it leads to very different ramifications. The gonadotropin in her body didn’t lead to aggression per se. Rather it showed that the estrogen was not only drive that lead to her sexual needs, it needed testosterone in addition to estrogen for her to start showing mating behavior or “seeking” a mate. Testosterone (steroid hormone) is associated with high levels of sexual motivation which was why it was not surprising when it led her to display more assertiveness to spend time with David. She did that with David as he was someone who I believed had already physiologically matured (with a lower voice and height) which made Natalie’s primal needs to seek a mate was illustrated in terms of her interest with him. This coincides with how when Darren had his growth spurt (start of the production of estrogen), it made him almost instantly more attractive to Natalie. If we look at it from Freud’s theory’s point of view; her source was similar to Darren’s but her impetus was being physically attracted to both Darren and David (no acts of aggression), her object was the boys and the aim was to diminish the presence of testosterone. She was never as stimulated by external or internal events as Darren was but that maybe because women in a general sense internalize physical actions while men are highly motivated by external actions. This could be related way back to when Neanderthals used to show being a better mate than another male by providing resources but more important by showing outwards strength through aggression and imitation.

Overall, I feel the biological motives are very important but they are not the only factors affecting human motivations and emotions. It would be different if we were back in the ancient times, but since then the brain itself has adapted to different times and hence is more cognitively aware of other things like hygiene. an example of that is an avoidance motivation of body odor that caused Darren to cringe at Natalie at first, even though he corrected behavior after that for social context.
Although Freud’s Driver Theory has been criticized due to its overemphasis on the biological aspect leading to motivation, I feel that this documentary meant to do that as well. Not much about social, cultural or any other external factor is really mentioned throughout the documentary leading to heavy use of reductionism.

Terms: grand theories, Freud’s Drive Theory; source, impetus, object and aim, discrepancy, homeostasis, reductionism, internal motives and external events, avoidance motivation, steroid hormone, testosterone

Throughout the documentary, I saw Darren and Natalie motivated largely by the concepts discussed in brain-based motivation. There are three main principles of brain-based motivation. The first principle is that specific brain structures are involved in certain types of motivation. The next principle is that biochemical agents such as hormones stimulate specific brain structures. The final principle is that day-to-day events can activate biochemical agents to being working. I am going to explore how these three principles were shown in the documentary, and relate to the reproductive motivation of Darren and Natalie were first experiencing.
In regards to specific brain structures that are involved in motivation, there are a couple that were mentioned in the film. For example, the film discussed the reproductive circuit which is specifically involved in the motivation of sexuality and more specifically the drive involved in passing on genes to the next generation. Darren and Natalie were both experiencing the reproductive circuit being activated for the first time, and this created a motivation to begin to think about who and how they would reproduce in the future. This was seen when Darren can’t think about anything else except sex when he was trying to talk to Natalie and was at a loss for words. His reproductive circuit was blocking other thoughts and trying to motivate him to reproduce. For Natalie, as her reproductive circuit was being developed, she began to have dreams about her two love interests. Both Darren and Natalie had a specific brain structure that was motivating them towards reproduction.
There were several biochemical agents seen in this film that stimulated the brain structure, the reproductive circuit. The agents that were mainly used were testosterone and estrogen. Testosterone is the male sex hormone that caused Darren’s reproductive circuit to be activated. The testosterone that was released was trying to make Darren as attractive for the opposite sex as possible. Testosterone was impacting the brain and reproductive circuit to make Darren more aggressive and competitive which would have made him more attractive especially when males would fight for females. In the film, Darren actually got into a fight because he was so aggressive. Natalie also received testosterone to stimulate her reproductive circuit, but the main hormone that she had was estrogen. Estrogen stimulated her brain to begin to make her into a mature woman ready to reproduce. Natalie’s body changed and she grew breasts and her hips became curvier to show males that she was more fertile and mature. These biochemical agents changed structures of the brain which in turn changed Darren and Natalie’s body to make them more motivated to reproduce and be attractive to the opposite sex.
The final principle of brain-based motivation explored in the film is the idea of day-to-day events that impact biochemical agents. Darren initially felt attracted to Natalie and not long after, he began to have changes to his body. He began to dream and think about her stimulating more testosterone and eventually leading to a wet dream that involved Natalie. Darren also felt the competition of attraction and reproduction because he was threatened by David. Darren and David fought and the aggressiveness could have led to more testosterone to be produced. Natalie also was impacted by day-to-day events. When Natalie and David are at the mall, he grabs her butt and because of this, she could have produced more estrogen because her body was telling her to continue to be curvy. The attraction of David and Darren led Natalie to have dreams about them. Overall, the film was designed to show the process and the motivation of reproductive maturation in teens and looking at it through the lens of brain-based motivation is an effective way of exploring it.
Terms: testosterone, estrogen, hormones, reproductive circuit, aggression, brain-based motivation, brain structures, biochemical agents.

The film did a great job at connecting different aspects of the body with the brain. Every new term they introduced when it came to talking with the reproductive part of the body, they were somehow able to bring it back and connect it with the brain. This is similar to what we learned in the book about the feeling of being hungry, is often associated with the hypothalamus part of the brain.
The part that I wanted to focus on was when Darrin first saw Natalie when she was auditioning for the play. Visibly, the movie depicted him in this sort of trance of love at first site. It was the first moment he saw Natalie and knew that he wanted to be more than just neighbors with her. This stimuli was the result of the release of dopamine in Darrin’s system. He got pleasure out of seeing Natalie and hearing her sing. This is linked with neurotransmitters in Darrin’s brain signaling the emotion that he is feeling. Dopamine is one pathway which generates good feelings and is often times associated with rewards. In this case, he wanted to be more than Natalie’s neighbor. Serotonin is another pathway and it influences mood and emotion. We can see this in the movie when Darrin gets chosen to be Romeo and he starts smiling at Natalie with joy. The third pathway is Norepinephrine, which regulates arousal and alertness. This arousal can be see when Natalie comes out of the dressing room in a red dress and Darrin runs away when he sees her. The fourth pathway is Endorphins which inhibits pain, anxiety, and fear by generating good feelings to counter these negative feelings.
This movie was interesting because it brought everything that was happening in the reproductive system, back to the brain. For example, when Darrin went into try out for the musical, the motivation of this in the brain could have been jealousy, but in the reproductive system he was gaining his first sperm by being motivated to do that. It was the same when he got in the fist fight at the mall, he was releasing testosterone. I also like how they brought it back to our ancestors as to why things happen to our bodies the way they do, however with time, these natural things that are supposed to make us more attractive, become a nuisance to us. That would make sense as to why Darrin was repulsed when Natalie went through puberty and her armpits started to become odorous. Because of that, he was more motivated to not be around her and Natalie could tell by his facial expression that he was repulsed by it. This is heavily due to the amygdala part of her brain which can sense facial expressions.
Terms: Hypothalamus, Dopamine, Neurotransmitters, Norepinephrine, arousal, alertness, Endorphins, Amygdala

The film Teen Dreams did a good job of showing a biological basis of motivations and emotions but came short of attributing the behaviors solely to biological determinism and instincts. If fact it made an important if brief distinction early in the film when it mentioned that we are more than the sum of our biology and that any mature adult “has to want it”; meaning that as thinking reasoning beings we have some semblance of choice in whether to surrender to our biological drives. What the film did attempt to do was visually show the enormous biological changes that an adolescent undergoes during puberty, many of these biological concepts could be straight out of chapter 3 of the text book. The amygdala, neurotransmitters and hormones are all mentioned in the film but more as a mechanism for motivation and emotion, not necessarily the root of the drive itself; for that we would need to look at the drive theories from chapter 2.

Focusing on biology and yet leaving room for other factors allows us to apply non biological theories in tandem. Freud’s drive theory being biological in nature would be closest to what was presented. By combining the effects of the bodies changes and hormones Freud’s theory would add that the behaviors were motivated by a biological need, a need that would produce anxiety and motivate the individual to fulfill the need. Freud’s theory, although biological is incomplete and doesn’t take into account other motivating factors that may motivate an individual. For instance at the beginning of the film when Daryn and Natalie are very young and playing; the behavior they exhibit may not be based on some biological need but rather a psychological need to play and learn. Hull’s Drive Theory again, biological in nature although more comprehensive than Freud’s still doesn’t fully explain some of the adolescents behaviors. In a the scene with Natalie at the dinner table with her parents, she starts a fight with her father. One can clearly see with that she is asserting her sense of identity and testing her limits, but the behavior is not a bodily need as Hull’s theory would suggest, it isn’t driven by any biological drive, it is an emotional and psychological act that seems to be deeper than Hull’s Theory would suggest. Social cultural theories would suggest a more social constructed idea on motivation and drive; with society and peers giving impetus to behavior. There does seem to be some examples of this in the film such as the girls closeness and peer-friendship relationship, Natalie is seen several times in the film being motivated and affected by her peer, for example when she receives a text from her friend telling her to get to the playground, she doesn’t walk but runs. But like the biological and psychologically based drive theories socio-cultural perspective has the opposite problem, it doesn't place enough importance on the biology of the individual. Their hormones and changing biology clearly is affecting and motivating their behavior in some way, there are several scenes throughout the film where biology is the motivating factor and is directly responsible for the ensuing behavior; such as Daryn in the pool with an erection for instance, or Natalie in bed with cramps. So if the major Drive theories are insufficient how does one fully explain their behaviors? Perhaps the theories are lacking separately, that is perhaps they each contribute to a larger whole and help give understanding to a very complex and varied phenomena, I.E. behavior. Perhaps there is a complex web of biological, socio-cultural and psychological factors at work interplaying upon each other with each and every behavior?

Tyler Lockwood
Professor MacLin
Motivation & Emotions
1/26/2017
Teen Dream
Teen Dream was an excellent movie highlighting the biological side of motivation, emotions, and behavior. In specific I will focus on the influences of hormones on the body as well as the influence of a person’s biology on their behavior. This story focused on two main characters Natalie and Darren and will be my examples for behaviors.
Starting off Teen Dream show two young kids, Darren and Natalie, playing in the backyard of their duplex. During this time they seem to be able to get physically close without any kind of physical attraction or sexual tension. This is because during this stage of their lives, they do have a drive for social acceptance from others, however, because of the lack of hormones in the body their brain is not pushing them to sex. As these two age, Natalie and Darren’s relationship is strain as Natalie becomes attracted to a person named David who Natalie’s friend Samone says is the cutest boy in the school. Now this behavior can be explained by the hormone estrogen that Natalie has and that Darren lacks. Because of estrogen, Natalie grows at a much faster rate than Darren and matures faster. With estrogen in her body maturing her faster she is being pushed to find a qualified mate for her so someone who is socially seen as being the best would be more desirable and be able to provide more for someone than a person who still might be stuck pre-puberty. As Darren see’s this he pushes himself into competition with David asking to be part of the play as Romeo even though he is part of the band for the play. This drive for competition and being better than others can be credit to testosterone. This hormone affects the brain and brings with it a competitive spirit as well as aggression. This aggression comes out as later in the movie Darren and David get into a physical alteration. Testosterone is working with the parts of the brain that are in control of the bodies fight reflex. These parts include the hypothalamus, medial fore-brain bundle, and orbitofrontal cortex. With the transmission of messages from testosterone into electrical massagers to these parts of the brain, Darren has a reaction of physically fighting David when David belittles him. A final example of behavior influenced by biological factors was Darren’s mistrust in his physical ability. With the need for estrogen to grow Darren’s body converts testosterone into estrogen and thus begins Darren’s growth spirt. However, with a high rate of growth and the brain lagging behind in controlling this growth Darren becomes untrusting of himself. One example of this is when Darren is dancing for the play as Romeo and falls down in practice. At this moment the narrator explains his embarrassment as well you can see the shame on his face. Going back for the need to acquire a mate and pass on your trait, falling in front of people while you try to showcase your skills would be disheartening as it impacts your personal image among others. Lucky for Darren, he will later have the drive to acquire the skills needed in order to master the dancing part of the play. However, while in the actual presentation of the play to the public, Darren’s vocal cords were growing and he squeaked as he sung. Once again his body is growing at a faster rate in which the brain can control. When this happens in a much larger crowd Darren freezes and is unable to speak the rest of his lines for the play. You can image at this time Darren’s flight response is in drive. His hypothalamus is probably very active in increasing Darren’s heart rate and his Amygdala controlling the emotions Darren is feeling giving him the feeling of fear of the situation he is currently in.
This movie was a great supplement to the reading of chapter 3. Not only did showcase the terms in the book, but furthered my understanding of the biological factors that influence a person’s behavior as they go through a crucial time of life, puberty.

Amygdala
Hormones
Fight-or-Flight/Approach vs. Avoidance
Hypothalamus
Medial Fore-brain Bundle
Orbitofrontal Cortex
Electrical/Chemical Message


Biological and physiological changes can have a major impact on the body and on the mind. Teen Dream followed two students, Darren and Natalie, as they progressed from children to sexually mature teenagers. Hull’s drive theory is the easiest to apply to each student’s situation. Darren is driven, by high levels of testosterone in his body, to focus on a burgeoning sexual interest, Natalie. Hull’s drive theory points out that unconscious motivations are having very real impacts on his body. The scene when Darren is in the pool with his friend indicates that, though Darren is not consciously aroused by the situation, his brain is flooded with so many hormones that his genitals fill with blood at the slightest touch. This reflex erection is a prime example of how our behavior is partially controlled by what occurring in our brain.

Testosterone also causes another behavioral trait: competitiveness. Testosterone encourages the body to fight and compete with others to satisfy the need for a mate. While typically associated with only animals, humans exhibit the same competitive streak. Due to the high levels of testosterone needed for sexual maturity, males are especially prone to competition. In the documentary, there is a scene where Natalie, David, Simone, Darren, and many of their assumed school friends are at the mall. Darren and David are posted in two different sections of the walkway when Natalie and Simone walk up. Both males encourage Natalie to walk over to themselves and both ridicule the other male’s chances. After words become heated, a fight ensues between David and Darren. While wrestling on the floor, to the shouts of encouragement from classmates, they are exhibiting the fighting instinct of testosterone. Another example of competition is when Darren’s testosterone causes his face to break out with acne. David takes the opportunity to call him “pizza face” and lessens Darren’s chances with the opposite sex.

Dopamine is another hormone found in the brain. Dopamine is the positive hormone that is released when behavior matches something biologically significant. For example, Natalie was at the mall with her friend Simone and her boyfriend David. David had his arm around Natalie’s shoulder and then moved his hand down her back to her butt. Dopamine was released to encourage this behavior, both in David’s and Natalie’s brain, for the end goal of successful reproduction. The brain trains itself on what is helpful evolutionarily and what behaviors should be encouraged using dopamine.

Another connection I found between the documentary and the text was how the sex hormones, estrogen and testosterone, cause a surge in emotions. Natalie best exhibited this surge when, at the dinner table, she told her parents they always say no and she was going to get a tattoo to spite them. This anger and angst is characteristic of teenagers, but is caused from the rise of hormones. The narrator continued by saying most people learn how to control these intense emotions. But for an adolescent experiencing these heightened emotions, it can be had to control and direct them toward any goal. I think this gives points to how motivation can be unconscious in causation, but conscious in how it is guided.

Terms: Hull’s drive theory, hormones, testosterone, need, instinct, dopamine

Motivation is affected by many factors. The documentary focused on how biological changes affects one's behavior (in this case, Natalie’s and Darren’s behavior). It showed their stages of puberty and how the same hormones can affect each person differently and causes them to respond differently in certain situations, even from instance to instance of the same situation.
First, I am will begin with Natalie’s story. The brain cells control the release of gonadotropins. Gonadotropins bring her ovaries to life. The hormone stimulates follicles to grow so that the eggs inside can begin to mature, as the wall matures estrogen begins to seep out of the follicles and into our blood. These new hormones lead to dramatic feelings that she doesn’t know how to control yet. She started the stages of puberty later than Darren but is growing faster because of her higher levels of estrogen. The adrenal glands on top of the kidneys pump small amounts of testosterone into her blood. The blood takes the hormone to her brain and stimulates the reproductive circuit to supply sex drive. Estrogen reduces the effects of sebum, an oily secretion of the sebaceous glands, which seeps through your skin and causes pimples. Testosterone causes the growth of underarm and pubic hair and maintains her sex drive. The shortage of estrogen also leads to pimples and a disinterest in boys. This shortage also causes her blood vessels that lead to her uterus to be cut off. Now, the cells in her womb have died and begin to shear off which leads to a period. Then the cycle begins again about two weeks before her period. The egg leaves the follicle. It then goes through the wall into her Fallopian tubes and then eventually is released during her period.
Now I will continue on with Darren’s story. The cells in his reproductive glands are activated at night. These cells release gonadotropins which fly through his blood. The hormone carries signals from his brain to the rest of his body, this happens each night. The cells divide in the testicles and create tubes. These tubes will eventually create his sperm. The brain continues to share signals which energizes the release of gonadotropins. Around the age of 13, the organs creates the male sex hormone (testosterone). These changes lead to reproduction along with the desire to want to reproduce. The brain cells will transform his mind and testosterone soaks the membranes of dormant cells triggering a chemical reaction. The testosterone then brings together a group of interconnected brain cells which gives him the desire for sex. Another event is that when he sees a cute girl, this signals his sex drive. The hormone levels soar at night, his reproductive circuit goes in overdrive, and sends signals to his penis. The blood fills the caverns of this penis and makes them swollen. Estrogen does develop in males but is also takes longer to take effect in males than females. Testosterone leads to boys becoming being more assertive and competitive. Sebum also, like in girls, pours out of the sebaceous glands which lie under your skin, once again it results in zits. Lastly, a cell pushes through the wall of his testicles which creates a sperm and is carried by contractions of the tube. From the start of puberty, it will take about five more years for his “sperm factory” to be completely functional at its full capacity.

As you can see, Natalie and Darren have the same chemicals running through their bodies. In Natalie, gonadotropin affects her ovaries which eventually leads to the reproductive cycle as stated above. In Darren, the gonadotropins lead to the swelling of his penis and the increase of his sex drive. Darren becomes sexually interested in Natalie. In Natalie, the hormone estrogen affects her development of pimples and also her attitude towards boys. She was very interested in David but as she began her period she became very annoyed with him and also the newly developed pimples on her face. She began to ignore his messages and wearing makeup. For Darren, estrogen does develop but it doesn’t have as severe as an impact as it did for Natalie. Now. for Natalie, testosterone causes the growth of underarm and pubic hair. It also maintains her sex drive. In Darren, testosterone leads to aggression and assertiveness. He is also very interested in kissing girls and having a romantic relationship. I noticed that these hormones causes effects in a similar light but there is also a variation in its effects on each gender. I really enjoyed the documentary. I am a visual learning so watching the scenes and listening to the narrator was very helpful in understanding the brain’s connections to human behavior.

Terms: motivation, causes and effects of motivation, sex drive, behavior, attitude

The film “Teen Dreams” shows motivation through a biological and physiological standpoint. Our core goal as human is to reproduce and pass our genes on to the next generation. ‘What causes behavior?’ is one of the two questions motivation revolves around. The cause of the behavior “Teen Dreams” depicts and explains is rooted from a physiological view. The explanations for their behaviors are explained through the process of puberty and the hormones testosterone and estrogen. Teen Dreams shows us how hormones affect the body during puberty and triggers other things to occur in the body such as behavior, emotions, and motivation.
Testosterone is responsible for high sexual motivation. Underlying testosterone is the mating effort. The mating effort consists of investing time into same-sex competition and seeking a mate/partner. In the film when Daren goes after another boy in the mall he is essentially trying to win Natalie over. This is an example of the same-sex competition that testosterone produces. Females receive testosterone too, which helps them produce the same for motives for mates and sex drive as males produce.
Not only is testosterone important for seeking a mate, but it is was drives us to want a sexual partner in the first place. Testosterone transforms the mind into creating our sex drive. Drive is what motivates our behavior into servicing our bodily needs. A motive is a process that energizes and directs our behavior. Drive and motive work hand in hand to get a job done that our body desire to fulfill. This can be seen throughout the entire film of teen dreams. We see this at Daren and Natalie are children and they start to grow up with each other. Daren gets motivated by the external events around him and the internal motives within him to seek out Natalie. One internal motive that can be seen in both Natalie and Daren is physiological preparedness. Physiological preparedness is how the body physically mobilizes itself to meet situational demands. This can be seen throughout almost every scene. For Daren his growth plates growing, deeper voice, preparedness of his sperm, and his matureness all escalate to meet the situational demands of the environment around him. For Natalie this can be seen through her enlarged breasts, growth spurts, and the preparedness of her eggs.
From chapter three, the hypothalamus plays an important role in the physiological aspects Daren and Natalie are undergoing throughout the film. The hypothalamus is responsible for generating the wants for water, food, and sexual partners. The pituitary gland is also controlled by the hypothalamus, which regulates the endocrine system and the hormones within the body. Natalie is in her early stages of puberty at the beginning of the film. She is experiencing surcharges of estrogen being produced throughout her body. With so much estrogen in her body than she is use to she starts to experience some side effects. Her emotions and feelings become hard to control. At times she is irrational and emotional. As time goes on she finds ways to cope and handle these new emotions that take over her body.
This film worked well at showing how the brain works in the way our bodies are designed, our motivation, and emotion to certain aspects that our going on inside and outside our body.

Vocab: Motivation, Behavior, Emotions, Testosterone, Hormones, Drive, Motive, External Events, Internal Motives, Physiological Preparedness, Hypothalamus, Pituitary Gland, Endocrine System, Feelings

Teen Dreams follows two young people, Natalie and Darren, as they go through puberty. The movie explains how each character is affected throughout the process, whether it is an excess of hormones or a physical change. A lot of their behavior can be explained by the material discussed in chapter three, which is about how neurotransmitters and hormones interact between the brain and the body. Teen Dreams talks mainly about testosterone and estrogen, which are the sex hormones of males and females, respectively.
One way testosterone affects behavior is by creating sexual motivation. This causes people to engage in mate-seeking behavior. Some examples of this in the film would be when Darren’s wall decorations change in his room. He now has pictures of popular beautiful women, which he goes so far as to kiss them. He also experiences attraction to Natalie, which causes him to join the cast of the play. At one point, he is unable to speak to her because he is not used to functioning with a sex drive. Testosterone also causes his vocal cords to expand, which makes his voice more prone to cracking. This may cause him to stop talking and singing as much, as he does not want to be embarrassed by it. Natalie’s testosterone levels also cause her sex drive, which sparks her interest in David.
Another way testosterone affects behavior is by creating a sense of competition with others of the same-sex. This is seen through Darren’s rivalry with David. They both have an interest in Natalie, and they will do whatever they can to prevent the other from getting her. David calls out Darren for wearing make-up in order to cover up his acne; Darren physically attacks David at the mall. Each boy wants to seem more attractive than the other, and each boy becomes aggressive in their attempts to do so.
Estrogen also affects behavior, especially during puberty. Natalie is not used to the new level of estrogen, which leads to her feeling new, uncontrollable emotions. This is seen when she gets into an argument with her parents about getting a tattoo. Estrogen levels also affect her mood during her first period. She was supposed to go out with David, but she ignored his call and did not seem very into him when he confronted her about it. Estrogen causes both of them to have a growth spurt, but Natalie’s happens before Darren’s, which makes her believe that he is not mature enough for her.
Other than hormones, brain structures also affect Darren’s and Natalie’s behaviors. The amygdala, which detects and responds to threatening and emotionally significant events, may have caused Darren to stop singing after his voice cracked during his solo, and also may have caused him to try to run before Natalie caught him spying on her. Natalie’s orbitofrontal cortex may have helped her decide between Darren and David.
This film helped explain how physiological aspects can affect motivation and behavior.

Terms: hormones, neurotransmitters, testosterone, estrogen, emotion, amygdala, orbitofrontal cortex

The topic in Teen Dreams that directly related to class material was about how testosterone affected the body. As discussed in class, the hormone testosterone is associated with high sexual motivation. The more testosterone one has, the more sexual drive one has. This is very evident in Teen Dreams. When Darren’s body hit puberty, it started to create a ton of testosterone in order to help him become a man. This testosterone then started to affect the way he thought. This was evident by the way Darren tried to interact and think about Natalia throughout the entire video. This was seen in the dream that Darren continued to have of giving Natalia the tattoo in order to get close and touch her. The testosterone in his body was too much for his mind to handle at the time and so all of the actions Darren made throughout the movie were about trying to get Natalia to like him. The testosterone was clearly in control. Testosterone also affected the way Natalia thought as well. Even though she is a girl, she still had some testosterone in her body and that was also causing her have sexual motivation. The testosterone was also controlling the way she thought and acted. This was seen by the fact of her liking David and then Darren.
The sexual motivation that both Darren and Natalia show many times throughout the video can also be explained by the Drive theory. As is explained in the book, drive comes from a place of physiological needs. During the movie Darren and Natalia go through puberty and because of this they develop their physiological need to reproduce. When they both feel this need physiological need, it creates a drive within them that causes them to do actions in order to fulfill the need. For example, Darren purposely waits for Natalia while leaving for school so that he can get a chance to talk to her so that he can get her to like him. He also joins the play because of his drive. He knows that Natalia is playing Juliet so if he tried out for the part of Romeo then he would be able to kiss her which would start to fulfill his drive that came from his physiological need for sex.
The three principles of the motivated brain were also evident during the video. One example that came to mind was when Darren and David fought. After Darren won the fight, it was clearly shown that something happened to Simone. This is evident of the first principle. The event of Darren showing his strength caused some biochemical agents in Simone’s mind to activate. Let’s say for instance that Darren winning the fight was an unexpected pleasant event to Simone. Because of this, the biochemical agent or neurotransmitter of dopamine was released into the brain. The second principle then went into effect. The biochemical agent stimulated specific brain structures. In Simone’s case, the released dopamine caused the limbic structures to be stimulated. Finally, the third principle went into effect. The specific brain structure generated specific motivations. In Simone’s case, the limbic system caused her to feel positive emotions as was evident by her smiling at Darren after he won. Because of the happy feeling that Simone received, she was motivated to go over to Darren’s house to see him to see if the positive feeling would continue and give her the reward that she was looking for.

Terms: testosterone, hormone, drive, physiological needs, three principles, biochemical agent, brain structures, limbic structures, dopamine, reward

Teen Dreams focuses on the chemical and physiological changes that influence motivation within the teenage body during puberty. The narrator goes back and forth between describing changes in the girl, Natalie, and in the boy, Darren. Both have motivations for getting the other person’s attention. Although this movie focuses mainly on motivation for sex, other terms that were discussed in the chapter from the book can be applied to these characters as well.
In this movie, testosterone is one of the main biochemical motivators. It starts with gonadotrophins being released in Darren to create tubes within his testicles, which starts the production of testosterone in him. His testosterone also causes him to be more competitive when it comes to finding a mate. For this reason, Darren tries out for the school play to impress Natalie. Later in the movie, it causes him to get into a fist fight with David for who Natalie should be with. Testosterone within Natalie motivates her sex drive, so she can eventually have children. It causes her to be bold and confident when talking to David at the beginning of the movie.
The book heavily discusses the role of dopamine within motivation, and we frequently observe its effect throughout the movie. Dopamine is released to create positive feelings, or for voluntary goal-directed approach responses. The first time we see it is when Darren and Natalie are children playing in their backyard. The dopamine creates positive feelings while they are playing, which causes them to enjoy the event. Another significant time that dopamine is released is when Darren defeats David in the fist fight. He believes he has proved himself worthy of being with Natalie, therefore his actions reflect themselves as a goal-directed approach response. This kind of response is repeated when he gets the part of Romeo, and when he gets to kiss Natalie in the play.
The amygdala and septo-hippocampal circuit motivate the fear within a person. They cause fear when Darren is watching Natalie from the tree in his backyard. The septo-hippocampal system goes into the “not-okay” mode because he is startled when Natalie walks outside. The testosterone motivates his brain to want sex, but blocks his ability to speak when Natalie asks what he is doing. The amygdala is what actually causes him to respond because it deals with regulating emotions involved with self-preservation. The amygdala is active within Natalie as well. It allows her to view the perceptions of Darren’s emotions when he is having issues learning how to dance. When he falls down, she sees his frustration and embarrassment, so she puts out her hand to help him up. She does the same thing during the music performance when Darren’s voice cracks. His amygdala is in overdrive because he feels that he embarrassed himself in front of the entire crowd, so his response is that he can’t trust his voice again. Natalie notices this, and to help him out, she says his line for him so they can continue the play.

Terms: motivation, testosterone, dopamine, drive, amygdala, septo-hippocampal circuit, self-preservation

Teen Dreams
The first three chapters of the book corresponded well with the assigned film Teen Dreams. Chapter three explained different hormones in the brain and what their effects are on the body. All hormones in the body are regulated. For example, when hormone levels are disturbed, the body has various reactions to adjust. The film focuses on how hormones affect the body of both males and females during puberty.
Other than the clear sex difference Darin and Natalie begin the movie the same. Both display emotions of joy and happiness while engaging in play outside. As the years progress many things change among the two children. Before any noticeable physical differences appear in the children, major changes are occurring internally. Gonadotropins are being released in the brain during sleep. During this dreaming process hormone levels surge releasing chemicals to different parts of the brain and body. This internal activation of new circuits brings changes in emotions as well as a new desire for sex.
Darins desire for sex is brought by a surge of testosterone. His desire for sex makes him motivated to get Natalie. He changes his extracurricular activity from band to drama with the underlying drive of getting Natalie. Due to the physical differences between males and females during puberty Natalie was seeing physical differences in her body before Darin. This caused her to desire a boy who was at the same maturity level as her. Darin met his motives by getting the lead. It was interesting to see how they both reacted to this news. Natalie’s expressional behaviors showed anger and disappointment. While Darin's facial expressions were of excitement.
As Darin progressed into puberty his testosterone levels rose. These high testosterone levels cause an internal disruption in emotions and aggression. In one of the scenes Daren gets into a fight with Dylan demonstrating internal and external emotion. This aggression is linked to a primal instinct talked about in both the movie and text. All three principles mentioned in the text were linked in the movie. Darins brain structures are generating specific motivation to get Natalie. Biochemical agents are being stimulating specific structures making him have sexual desires. Lastly his day-to-day events stir biochemicals into action. Thus explaining why he needs to feel like the superior male.
Natalie's direction in emotions changed from not liking Darin to being attracted to him. This is because he finally hit a growth spirt and developed muscles. With a more mature physical body instinct drives her to be more attracted to him.
Their dreams at night throughout the movie reflected what was going on in their lives internally and externally.
It's was interesting to me to see all the different things in their environment that changes. For example their rooms Daren have posters of half naked girls is a subtle way of showing his desires for women.
Another thing I thought was interesting was the difference between Darren and Natalie when they needed support. Natalie would go to her friend Simone. While Daren kept to himself. This involves the hormone oxytocin what we discussed in class as the support hormone.
The dreams get more and more detailed throughout the movie linking external events happening in their lives to what their emotions are feeling. Natalie faced with a decision of what boy to pick and Darin's dreams showing his sexual desires for Natalie.
I think the movie was an interesting way to connect the three chapters together
To see how puberty affects teenagers internally and externally.

Internal
External
Oxytocin
Instinct Drive
3 Principles
Gonadotropins
Hormones
Testosterone
Internal Activation
Environmental Factors

Teen dream, does a good job of representing how a teenager’s brain changes through puberty. Since the film discusses changes in the body and brain function we can observe how motivation can is influenced through biological and physiological aspects.
As Darren starts puberty there are clear physical changes in his appearance, but what one doesn’t see is the amount of testosterone that is being released into his body. Although testosterone is a hormone that is known to influence sexual motivation it also plays a big role in the development of teenage boys. As Darren grows up we can notice that his changes in his actions change depending on his goals that are influenced by the changes he goes through during puberty. The clear example in the movie is how he wants to impress Natalie. His increase in sex drives motivates him to try out for the lead role in the play to impress his crush.
During the film Natalie’s progress through puberty was faster and more noticeable compared to Darren’s. Although both kids start puberty at the same time we—as viewers—could not see the same progress in both of the teenagers. So to say, a teenage girl—such as Natalie—progresses through puberty at faster pace than a teenage male. As Natalie’s estrogen levels increase we can notice a change in her physical appearance. For example we can see that she is getting taller, she is starting to develop breast and curves, and she is starting to grow armpit and pubic hair. One way this changes her motives, is that as her physical appearance change so does her needs as a teenager. Instead of wanting to be just friends with boys she begins to gain romantic interest in boys her age. In order for her to attract boys her age she starts to dress with clothes that are more fitting to her form, she starts wearing makeup, and she starts going on dates with boys, and she starts playing closer attention to her personal hygiene. A negative side effect of puberty can be said to be a teenager’s change in mood. As Natalie’s estrogen and testosterone levels fluctuate so do her emotions. What I mean by this is that Natalie’s body is creating hormones at such a fast pace that her body cannot keep up with all of this. This is why we see her act aggressive towards her parents. We can also see that as Darren’s levels of estrogen change he begins to get acne, and his height is changing at a slower pace compared to Natalie’s.
As Natalie and Darren go through puberty they develop into teenagers with a sex drive. These teens may not notice, but their behaviors are changing because they are at a stage where they want to attract the opposite sex. Darren, tries to get Natalie’s attention by showing his aggression and talents. His competitive manner is influenced by his testosterone levels. As the movie progresses we see how the physiological changes that teens go through puberty their emotions towards each other and their peers changes accordingly to what they are experiencing internally and externally.
Terms: puberty, hormones, testosterone, estrogen

“Teen Dreams”

The documentary, “Teen Dreams” explains the transformation that boys and girls go through during puberty. During puberty your body will go through physical changes as well as chemical changes within your brain and these changes then influence your motivation and emotions. Our motivated behavior is produced during an increase of hormones in our body like testosterone and estrogen. It was interesting to learn that puberty is kick started during the night and that is when a group of cells within the brain are activated. Those cells then release a chemical signal into the blood vessels and hormones known as gonadotropins move through your blood and that is just the beginning. Our body goes through many changes on the inside during puberty and many of them happen before they start to show on the outside.

In the documentary Darren and Natalie are used as examples of the way our bodies change during puberty. Testosterone has a big impact on our sexual motivation and mate-seeking behavior. One example we see in Darren is when he sees his crush, Natalie talking to David and he becomes angry and he rushes off to audition for Romeo in the school play to beat out David for the part. Testosterone can come off in many different ways, for example, aggression, anger, and competitiveness. For Natalie it comes off in a slightly different way. Natalie is starting to have a sex drive that motivates her interest in Darren when Simone takes an interest in him.

For estrogen, it has a different reaction in Darren and Natalie. Darren would time him leaving school at the same time Natalie would leave so he could walk with her, but when she gets a text from Simone she starts to run off. In order for Darren to keep up his body has to produce estrogen. By the time his body produces enough he is too late on catching her. For Natalie, estrogen affects her behavior when she gets into an argument with her father of getting a tattoo. This new emotion was motivated by estrogen. When her levels of estrogen in her body drop she is exposed to another mood where she ignores David’s call and refuses to go out with him because of her discomfort of her period.

As discussed in the book, the hypothalamus that simulates the pleasure for food and sexual partners. The hypothalamus also controls the pituitary gland which regulates the endocrine (hormonal) system. The documentary did a good job and showing how hormones being released in our body motivate us to find a sexual partner. When Darren saw Natalie auditioning for the play the hypothalamus simulates the pituitary gland to send hormones through the bloodstream to simulate the adrenal glands to release these hormones that triggers his sex drive.

Terms: motivated behavior, testosterone, estrogen, gonadotropins, sexual motivation, mate-seeking behavior, behavior, emotion, hypothalamus, pituitary gland, endocrine system, hormone, adrenal glands, drive.

This documentary relates directly to biology and the brain and how they are related to motivation. It high lights key things taking place in the two main characters, Natalie and Darren's bodies, and shows how those changes effect what they are motivated to do. One of the main driving forces with their behavior is the hormones in their body. The main hormone involved in puberty is gonadotrophin. This causes a massive release of the hormone testosterone into Darren's body. Testosterone is the main male sex hormone and is involved in the creation of sperm, an increased sex drive, and more with puberty. The main hormone released into Natalie's body is estrogen, causing her eggs to begin to mature, her body to grow, as well as growth of body hair. Internal motives are things that occur within ourselves to direct our behavior. One of the main internal motives involved when it comes to puberty is need. One of the needs portrayed in the film is sex. Because Darren's body is now being flooded with testosterone, he begins to feel a new need for sex/a sex drive he has never experienced before. This new sex drive motivates several things he does. He tries to look more attractive, tries to get Natalie to be interested in him, and act tougher. One thing that is now motivated by the testosterone is to be more aggressive. Testosterone causes higher levels of aggression than Darren is used to. He finds himself trying to be more dominant and powerful. He also feels more aggression and gets in a fight with the other boy who is trying to get Natalie's attention. This is also related to evolutionary reasons in that those who were more powerful and aggressive tended to get a mate more easily. Another thing the two were both experiencing due to their new levels of hormones was their dreams that were more sexual in nature than normal. Because of these dreams, both were thinking about the opposite sex much more than before. This led both to being more interested in each other as well as being more motivated to form a connection/be attractive to the other person. As well as changes in sex drive, Natalie also had additional changes because of her increased levels of estrogen as well. She began to be more emotional. When it came to her parents not allowing her to get a tattoo, she instantly became very emotional, likely with estrogen as the cause. In addition, these changes in her body caused her to have her first period. She also became very emotional with David during this time as well, talking to him differently than she normally would. Along with the need they now feel in terms of sex, another internal motive, cognitions happened as well. Their thoughts began to change due to their hormones. They began to think more about each other and have fantasies about what could happen between them. Their minds became overloaded with these new thoughts of looking good for each other as well as just attracting the other person as well. Overall, the motivation behind so many of the two main characters behavior was due to the new hormones they were experiencing. Almost all of their motivation and behavior can be explained due to the chemicals in their brains and bodies causing them to change and grow.

Terms: internal motive, testosterone, estrogen, gonadotrophin, needs, cognitions, drive

Teen Dreams showed the changes happening in the body during puberty. Our main characters, Natalie and Darren, experienced a lot of hormone changes, which affected their motivations and reactions toward different events. As Darren got older he began to produce testosterone. This hormone is responsible for increasing his sex drive and also for making him act more aggressive. This is why men are more prone to aggression and competition.
Darren had a crush on Natalie. His testosterone was responsible for increasing his sex drive when he saw her. Puberty brought him out of the ‘girls have cooties’ phase. As a thirteen year old his first thought probably wasn’t that he wanted to have sex with her, but he was definitely attracted to her and wanted to be with her. Natalie’s hormones, namely estrogen, contributed to her body’s fat cells being sucked out of her blood to form breasts and hips. Her hormones were helping to make her attractive to Darren, and others as well. David also liked Natalie, no doubt as a result of the testosterone in his own pubescent brain. Darren was jealous of David, and his testosterone strengthened his desire to compete ‘for a mate’ so to speak. That is what motivated him to try out for the school play, because he wanted to beat David to be with Natalie himself. A more extreme example of this competition was when they were at the mall, and Darren physically fought David to try and win over Natalie.
These are examples of how events trigger biochemical agents, which in turn trigger specific brain structures that carry out the specific motivated actions. Darren seeing David and Melanie triggered his testosterone. The hormone aroused a specific brain structure, likely the amygdala, which is responsible for responding to threats. Darren saw David as a threat, and the process in his brain resulted in a physical fight between the two boys.
A few other brain structures are being activated here between Darren and Natalie. The hypothalamus is the structure that is responsible for hunger, thirst, and sex. We’ve already seen Darren’s increased sex drive in action. The hypothalamus is the part of the brain responsible for that reaction in him. Natalie’s sex drive does not develop as quickly, because she does not start producing testosterone until after Darren. Testosterone in Natalie’s brain is what starts to activate her sex drive. In many scenes of this movie each of the characters would have received releases of the neurotransmitter dopamine, a chemical related to happiness and good feelings. When Darren saw Natalie it made him feel good, which was made obvious by the smile on his face. The event (seeing Natalie) triggered the biochemical agent (dopamine) to cause the brain structure (likely the hypothalamus) to elicit the physical response (the smile). All of the events can be laid out in this same path to show how the functions of the brain lent themselves to the motivations of each character.

Terms: Testosterone, estrogen, amygdala, hypothalamus, dopamine, neurotransmitter, hormone

This documentary discussed the many changes that people will have during puberty. It explains the actions and behaviors because of the changes that happen in the body. This documentary connects to much of chapter three which is the motivated and emotional brain. In chapter three it is explained that the brain is important because it creates cravings, needs, desires, pleasures, and emotions, which connects to Darrin and Natalie's experiences. The documentary starts by explaining how in Darrin's brain cells are activated and then hormones are released. At his age of thirteen testosterone will be triggered and it will start to transform or change his mind. His reproductive circuit will give him the desire for sex, which is why he is interested in Natalie.
For Natalie, hormones will stimulate and estrogen will flow into her blood. The cause of this process she will change into a sexually mature female. Next, inactive parts of her brain will become active and they will then form new connections. This will create powerful emotions. These powerful emotions are why she asked for a tattoo. When her parents told her no she had a stronger emotion because of this change in her brain. Also, this is difficult for her to control which is why she had the outburst.
Next, Darrin's brain wants sex, and to cope he was spying on his neighbor Natalie. When talking and asked where he thinks Natalie should put her tattoo he couldn't talk because of his reproductive circuit. Later, he was having certain dreams because of the high amount of testosterone that he had.
Later in the documentary it is explained how Natalie needs male sex hormones. This is why she becomes interested in another boy. Throughout this they lose control over their bodies because of hormones. As different things are changing the brain and body have to adjust to them, such as adjusting to Darrin's new height. Next, Natalie's testosterone begins her hair growth and eventually starts to smell bad. This leads to Darrin not kissing her. Natalie also has an estrogen shortage and begins to get pimples. Darrin again gets a high amount of testosterone and begins to fight with another boy. Once Natalie gets her period she becomes upset with her boyfriend and tells him to get lost.
These different behaviors and emotions are explained by the changes in the brain.To understand why these teenagers engage in these behaviors we ask what causes the behavior and why does it vary in intensity. For this documentary these reason for their behavior such as being aggressive are because Darrin's testosterone levels are high. This can also explain the intensity of this behavior. Their internal motives are because of needs or emotions that are felt. Like previously stated, much of this documentary can relate to chapter three because it has a lot to do with the changes in the brain.
Terms: Hormones, Testosterone, Estrogen, Emotion, Motivation, Intensity, Internal Motives, Needs

Change happening over night while a person sleeps. Humans lose control of their bodies because of hormones. When the levels of testosterone and estrogen in their bodies increasing every day. Their bodies are getting ready to reproduce slowly, and their bodies are getting ready for them to have sex. I don’t think that everyone truly realize what is happen to them or their bodies. Everyone just think they are going up and liking new and different things as time passes. Realizing that you are change on the inside more than you are on the outside. When I was growing up all I would hear is that I got it from my mother’s side of the family, but I didn’t know what everyone was talking about. Then I started paying attention to my mom’s side of the family and how tall they are more than my dad’s side of the family. My looks also are from my mom’s side of the family. Everyone I know and knows my mother always tell me I look just like my mom. I was always wondering if that was a good thing or a bad thing. I now know more about why I was told this as an adult rather than when I was a kid.
Growing up I would always hear that I grew so many inches overnight but I thought that it was just a saying. I never knew that I was really growing overnight. I thought it was a phrase that everyone would say. I do know that everyone grows inside and outside of their bodies overnight. Darren and Natalia both grew different in the videos. Darren grew out of his pajamas and Natalia grew hair under her armpit. We also saw that their likes also change from pictures on their walls would change the more they went through puberty. Everyone going through puberty different but most of their changes happen overnight while they are sleeping. Both male and females get testosterone and hormones but the difference between male and females is how we use testosterone and hormones and how it benefits us all differently. Testosterone and hormones causes all of us to get a sex drive but females and males are effected by them differently. Sometimes our sex drives causes male to show that our bodies want something from another person. In order to reproduce females and males need something from the other that they don’t already have. Females need sperm from the males, and males need the eggs from the females.
While everything was changing on the inside of our bodies for the better of us, but on the outside our bodies where changing because we were breakout on our faces. Some of us even got picked on for our breakouts on our faces. Just like how when Darren was breakout on his faces his classmates where laughing because he was trying to cover it up with makeup. No one likes have black spots or pimples on our faces. For some it could make them feel unattractive to others. Now when you have to impress someone you like or look your best for picture day you don’t want this big pimple on your face because you may get make fun of but everyone will have gone through it or will go through it sometime time in their life time. Whether anyone likes it or not it will happen, getting pimples.
Both males and females don’t start out ready to reproduce once they are born. We are have steps or stages that we all go through before we are ready to reproduce and give our genes to the next generation. We are must go through puberty before our bodies are ready to go reproduce children. While we are going through puberty our bodies are sending signs from one part of our bodies to our brains or another part of our bodies. This will start a reaction on the inside of our bodies in order to prepare for what will be coming of us in the future. We all need to grow whether we like it or not.
Males: Darren
Cells divide in our bodies to make sperm or to grow in one way or another. Over the years from child to teenager the cells grow from slow to grow faster from the previous year. Over the years testosterone takes over and gives someone urges to reproduce and have a sex drive. When this happens it’s like choosing a partner you want to have kids with. Some males will have a harder time talking to a female than others. Male’s hormone level raises at night. When their testosterone level raises their reproductive circuit goes into overdrive. They even take over their dreams. When their reproductive circuit goes into overdrive the brain sends a signal to a male’s penis. Extra testosterone gets turn into estrogen. Testosterone not only gives a sex drive but helps get sex. Males will become more competitive and driven when their levels go into overdrive. Changing in a male’s testicles are bring them close to furthering his genes. Cells divided in the testicles which will become sperm later in their life. Male body is overreacting to hormone levels, which can cause erections from the slightest touch near their groin. Erections are common with teenage boys, around about 20 times a day. Males get trouble from testosterone but once they have enough to convert into estrogen which also starts their growth spurt, growing .5 an inch a month, this is the fastest since they were a baby. Being taller makes boys more attractive to girls. Once they move around their brain must track every movement in order to be balance. Brain must adjust since his limb have grown so quickly the brain has a harder time keeping up. Testosterone last trick is to cause the vocal cords to grow and once the vocal cords get longer the voice will get deeper. The brain has a hard time controlling the vocal cords since they are at a different size as the brain is used to. Reaching sexual mature signs from her reproductive circuit tells the chamber which holds the sperm to retract. For the first time the male gene are set free into the world to attract.
Females: Natalia
In a female, similar to a male, they change overnight has well but instead of growing sperm they have eggs that grow inside them. Inactive areas in female’s brain start getting active more and more each day. Females start changing their moods. Females get angrier and angrier. Female’s new circuits start firing powerful new emotions. Female don’t know how to handle their new emotions once they get them. Females start puberty later than males but they grow faster and look more mature. Females think they are more mature than males but at a young age they are nowhere near reproducing than the males are. Female’s benefits from hormone level increase. At first there are only a few differences from a boys and girls body. In female’s chest the fat cells soak up the fat and expand, also in a female’s butt and hips. This is the first sign of womanly curve. Their first period is unique it’s not because of a feral egg. Their period is a milestone in puberty. Female haven’t made a mature egg but this time. Her period becomes lock in on a monthly cycle by her brain. In 10 days after a period the womb wall is fulling grown. While the male’s testicles are making millions of sperm the female’s ovals are trying to make one perfect egg. As the egg reaches a certain size it sends a signal to the brain the biggest massive hormones that the body has ever experience. Making the egg reach the highest mature it can reach. The female’s most memory event that puberty can give a female is when the body is ready to release her first mature eggs.
Terms: Hormones, Testosterone, Estrogen, Sex Drive, Reproduce, Sperm, Eggs, Groin, and Erection

This was a very interesting documentary that portrays puberty and the journey from kid to adolescent in a way that a lot of people can relate to. The main purpose of this assignment was to look at specific parts of the documentary and do an in-depth analysis of principles regarding motivation and emotion. That being said, the first theory that I would like to relate to this documentary stems from the grand theory, specifically the part that talks about drive. I find this very important because this documentary focuses on the biology of reproduction. The “drive” to reproduce is a vital part that keeps all living organisms from being extinct.

In humans, it is a more complicated process which starts with puberty. There are three parts to the grand theory; will, instinct, and drive. Drive, according to the textbook arose from a functional biological standpoint. This view suggests that servicing bodily needs is part of the function of behavior. Based on this, a theory that I found really interesting was Hull’s Drive Theory, which suggests that motivation had one ultimate source and that is bodily need. Meaning, our motivation was purely biological and thus we can predict motivation before it happens. An example from the documentary that shows drive as a motivation is when Darren sees Natalie kissing David which makes him jealous. Driven by testosterone and the drive for sex, his competitiveness increases and he decides to audition for the part of Romeo to win Natalie; who plays Juliet. Another example of motivation through sexual drive can be seen in the scene when Darren and David were fighting over Natalie in the mall.

According to the documentary, this scene shows how aggression and sex circuits are wired to overlap in the brain. Thus, the aggression was motivated by sexual drives.This also shows how testosterone is a hormone that is associated with motivation; specifically sexual motivation. Another example of testosterone motivating behavior is in the scene when Darren sees Natalie auditioning for the Romeo and Juliet musical. His brain was triggered by the dose of testosterone and activated the reproductive circuit. This turns the girl he knew as a friend into the “girl of his dreams”. Something new that I learned was that testosterone is not only a sexual motivator for males but also for females. This can be seen when Natalie approaches David and her adrenal gland pumps small amounts of testosterone throughout the body to give her the necessary sex drive to motivate her behavior. However, although drive energizes behavior, it does not direct it (Reeve, 2009, pg. 31). According to Hull, one of the ways behavior can be directed is by a response followed by a quick reduction in drive. This is because through this, the behavior is reinforced. An example of this is when Darren was singing on stage and his voice cracked due to puberty changing the length of his vocal chords. When that happened, his drive to continue singing stopped immediately. Due to that, he did not sing at all until the end of the musical which shows how his behavior was redirected.

Term: motivation, emotion, grand theory, drive, extinct, will, instinct, functional biology, behavior, Hull’s Drive Theory, bodily need, testosterone, competitiveness, sexual drive, reproductive circuit, hormone, sexual motivation, adrenal gland, energizes, direct, reinforced,

The documentary Teen Dreams focuses on a boy and a girl as they go through puberty and the changes that take place in their bodies as a result. Puberty is when new hormones, testosterone and estrogen, come into play in our bodies. Hormones play a very important role in motivation and emotion, and can help explain why we do some of the things we do.
One specific thing that is mentioned in the documentary that is relevant to class material is testosterone. Testosterone is the male sex hormone that is triggered once puberty starts. The changes made to a boy during puberty are demonstrated in a 13 year old boy named Darren. Once testosterone is produced in Darren’s body he begins to have a sex drive. This explains why he has trouble speaking to Natalia, the other main character in the documentary, when she asks him a question about where she should get a tattoo. Darren’s reproductive circuit is making him have the inability to have a conversation so he gets tongue tied and does not respond to Natalia’s question.
Eventually testosterone builds up in the body and is converted to estrogen. After Darren’s body has enough estrogen, he experiences a growth spurt. He grows so rapidly that his brain cannot keep up and he is pretty clumsy. Testosterone also makes Darren more aggressive and more competitive. This overlaps with the sex drive because our male ancestors would compete for the females. This is why Darrin experiences anger and jealousy towards David. Darren wants to be with Natalia and does not want David to be with her at all. This leads to the fight between them at the mall. Testosterone helps explain why Darren was motivated to join the musical. He wanted to impress Natalia.
Natalia is also going through puberty at this time although the hormone that is mostly at play in her body is estrogen. Estrogen is responsible for giving her a more extreme range of emotions that she is not quite sure how to handle yet. This is the reason she gets frustrated and yells at her parents for them refusing to allow her to get a tattoo. Estrogen also makes her mature faster than Darren which is why she looks older than him even though they are the same age. The whole goal of puberty is to make her more attractive to potential mates. She develops curves, armpit, hair, and B.O. (which used to be attractive to our ancestors). She also develops her period during puberty.
This documentary also demonstrates the three principles that researchers use to understand motivational processes within the brain. The first principle, specific brain structures generate specific motivations, includes neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers in the brain. In both Darren and Natalia’s bodies, neurotransmitters are stimulated when it is time to begin puberty. The second principle is biochemical agents stimulate specific brain structures. These neurotransmitters were stimulated by the biochemical agent, gonadotropin. The third principle is day-to-day events stir biochemical agents into action. All throughout the documentary biochemical agents are constantly being released into Darren and Natalia’s bodies based on the experiences they have.

Terms used: motivation, emotion, puberty, hormones, testosterone, estrogen, three principles, specific brain structures generate specific motivations, neurotransmitters, biochemical agents stimulate specific brain structures, day-to-day events stir biochemical agents into action.

The documentary, “Teen Dreams,” focused primarily on the changes the teenage body goes through during the process of puberty. These changes that occur are physiological, psychological, and social. The teenage body’s maturation is triggered by hormones. Hormones are chemicals, each of which has a unique purpose.
Our text talked a lot about cortisol, as it is one of the major hormones. Cortisol is mostly known as the stress hormone. This hormone is responsible for the fight or flight response, triggered in a situation where a person feels threatened. In this stressful situation, a person may feel overwhelmed. When the situation becomes even more stressful, cortisol is released. This causes the person to assess the situation and determine which choice would benefit them most, fight or flight.
Another key hormone mentioned in our book was oxytocin. Oxytocin is most commonly known as the “bonding hormone.” This hormone is the reason why human beings seek proximity of other people. We crave and desire friendship. Oxytocin is the reason we feel a need to seek counsel when we are upset, rather then be alone. One interesting role oxytocin plays in human growth and development occurs right after childbirth. After the pain, discomfort, and stress involved in pregnancy, mothers still have to bear even more during the process of childbirth. After childbirth, a new mother’s brain releases oxytocin, giving her the desire to hold and love her new baby. Without the release of the hormone oxytocin, a new mother may experience post-partum depression and just feel a general disconnect between her and her new infant.
The last hormone that our textbook mentioned was testosterone. The documentary also talked about testosterone a lot because it is one of the sex hormones involved in puberty. Testosterone is associated with sex drive. It encourages competition for mates in all organisms. Testosterone is released from the testicles in males and results in physiological changes among boys. Vocal chords stretch, resulting in a deeper sounding voice. More body hair is grown. In males, hair sprouts in the armpits, genitals, and face. In females, testosterone causes hair growth in the armpits and genitals.

Terms: hormones, testosterones, sex drive, puberty,

ME "Teen Dreams"

While watching the movie I noticed how the movie and the textbook were related. The different phases of puberty, along with the varying chemicals and hormones involved, were motivating factors for the teens in the movie. This strongly connects to chapter three and its discussion of chemical reactions in the brain that are signaled by hormones that motivate a person to complete a task. Just as Ghrelin stimulates hunger to motivate eating, hormones such as testosterone stimulate the sexual organs which motivate sexual reproduction. The testosterone in Darren was activated when he saw Natalie, which then motivated his newly changing body to sexually reproduce.
This is also strongly related to the three principles in the chapter. First, specific brain structures generate specific motivations. As mentioned at the beginning of the movie, the two children did not have the motivation to sexually reproduce until years later when puberty began to set in and new areas of their brains were being activated. Once activated, as we saw with Darren seeing Natalie, a new motivation to sexually reproduce was also activated. Second, biochemical agents stimulate specific brain structures. The new areas that were developing in their brains were stimulated by gonadotropins. Hormones such as testosterone, estrogen, and sebum were all activated as well as stimulating to the specific sexual reproduction structures of the brain. Finally, day-to-day events stir biochemical agents into action. As stated in the film, puberty is always activated at night. Darren and Natalie were often shown sleeping during the most notable of their changes. It was also stated that puberty starts by the triggering of dormant brain cells and the gonadotropins enter specific cells to then produce testosterone. Chemicals in the brain are also activated to move the adolescents closer to becoming a mature adult.
Closer related to the first two chapters, there were external events that took place throughout the movie that then motivated certain actions from the characters. Darren saw Natalie take interest in David, which then motivated him to audition for the play. Darren had the external event of seeing a girl he was interested in take interest in another boy, which sparked his internal motivators such as emotions like jealousy and desire, as well as the biological need to reproduce and to compete for a mate which were just starting to develop in his brain.
The energy and direction of his motivation were made clear once he auditioned for the play. He did not try to a void the situation, but rather approached it, seeing positive consequences if he was to be successful. He was engaged in the play, taking on the lead role, and his behavior was challenging toward his rival, as seen throughout the play rehearsals but especially seen in the fight at the shopping mall. While these were not directly stated in the movie, I feel that he would have likely experienced the physiological effects of increased heart rate, perspiring, and as sometimes mentioned, the increase in bloodflow to his sexual organs.
I have seen videos on puberty and adolescent development in previous classes but I had never seen one while keeping the idea in mind that it was related to motivations and emotions more than what seemed to be apparent. There are many strong connections to the textbook and themes that I had not seen before and it helped to bring the chapters together to see how closely related they were. I felt it was difficult to find connections to only one chapter without finding how it would relate to others.

Terms: motivation, emotion, engagement, behavior, biological, biochemical, energy, direction, physiological, hormones, external events

This movie is the biological logic of motivation. The film “Teen Dreams” captures the brain functions of the behavior of male and female’s bodily needs in order to “drive”. Both Natalia and Darren are examples of how the brain begins to provide signals throughout the body in order to support the physical changes during puberty. This film also states that puberty is driven by the brain only at night to help support the purpose of mating and reproducing. The video explains the theory of drive and why male and females behaviors changes as they go through puberty. Testosterone and Estrogen were the main key factors into each genders behaviors. We learn that genotropin is the starter pack for males because the brain sends out signals to the bloodstream which later on those signals will become stronger and stronger as the male gets older to help the body produce and build sperm and testosterone. This film shows how the body matures for both the male and female by the power of hormones and testosterone. Even though females start puberty later than boys do, their estrogen allows them to grow faster than males, hence the reason boys usually have their growth spurt in high school while females experience their body changes during middle school. Motivation ties into this film by explaining why our bodies grow into a sexually driven lifestyle. For males, their testosterone soaks through their membrane transferring signals for desire of sex. For females, estrogen is going into their bloodstream, making their boobs grow, filling out their curves, getting their adult body and creating hormones that take over their mind and create new emotions they have no control over as well as emotions they have never experienced before puberty. These emotions for both Natalie and Darren is what motivates their daily decisions or actions. For example, Darren fighting David at the mall is caused by the biological motivation created through testosterone build up in Darren’s body. Neurotransmitters was another big part of development in this film for both Darren and Natalia. Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers that tell both Darren and Natalia that their bodies need to start producing testosterone or estrogen. These chemical messengers is the reason for Darren acting aggressively with David at the mall and feeling great after he was able to let all of his anger out of his system. Neurotransmitters are the reason for Natalia becoming very emotional while having dinner with her parents because they told her no. Because these chemical messengers are new to both bodies and become so overwhelming, both Natalia and Darren are unable to control these emotions and act out before realizing their actions. One thing that I did learn from this film is that testosterone is not only built for the male body, but for woman as well. The text tells the reader that testosterone has to do with high levels of sexual motivation, which involves both male and females. I thought this was an interesting topic to learn about because most of us believe testosterone in only inside males.

terms: drive, puberty, testosterone, estrogen, genotropin,motivation, hormones, neurotransmitters

According to the text, there is a highly complex, interconnected layering responsible for the motivation and emotion of behavioral expression. The short film, Teen Dreams, represents a strong biological perspective concerning the physiological upbringings of sexual maturity during adolescence. These changes in the body for both males and females have strong, impulsive, and reflexive tendencies that encourage not only the brain to direct bodily development but to also influence motivational responses because of these physiological changes.
The onset of puberty begins with a signal from the brain, also known as the body’s “command center”. From that point on, biochemical agents, such as hormones and neurotransmitters, communicate with the brain as these physiological changes occur. Hormone levels are monitored by the hypothalamus, which is responsible for regulating both the endocrine and autonomic nervous system and its ability to keep control of the internal environment of the organism. With the massive changes associated with maturing the reproduction system, the communication with the hypothalamus and hormone levels is crucial for adaptation when responding to the external environment. The book describes the occurrence of motivational response as being caused by stimulation from an environmental event (internal or external) activating the brain’s release of the appropriate biochemical agent for communication to a specific region of the brain, which then activates conscious awareness in developing an aroused motivational response.
During puberty, there are many unstable emotional responses due to heightened biochemical agents streaming throughout the body. The amygdala is the brain’s emotional control center with a heightened sensitivity to negative emotional input. As a threatening event is registered by the amygdala, several responses could occur. Factors such as levels of hormones and neurotransmitters greatly impact the interpretation and motive behind the following behavior. An example of this was when Natalie got angry at her parents when they told her that she would not be getting a tattoo. Due to the high levels of estrogen, the regulation of her emotions is not easily controlled which resulted in her getting extremely angry. The hypothalamus is responsible for motivators such as hunger, satiety, thirst, and sex. This region of the brain also controls the sympathetic (excitatory) system of the autonomic nervous system. When relating back to the amygdala, depending on variables such as testosterone, stimulation of the lateral hypothalamus engages the aggressive and competitive nature of the “fight or flight” response especially with the sex physiological need.
Another enforcer of motivation in the brain is the neurotransmitter dopamine. Dopamine is released in anticipation of a pleasurable situation as well as after. It acts as a reward to reinforce these preferred circumstances and it activates voluntary goal-directed approach responses. As demonstrated by Darren, his sex drive was influencing the goal-directed behavior of trying to win Natalie. The text states that when an approach behavior occurs toward the reward desired, the person’s approach behavior continues and often increases in vigor until attainment of the goal. As Darren persisted in these behaviors to get Natalie’s attention, he would engage in riskier and stronger actions including taking the role of Romeo and getting in a fight with David, his competitor.
Another influencing brain structure is the prefrontal cortex. The prefrontal cortex is divided into three sections (left prefrontal lobe, right prefrontal lobe, and the medial prefrontal lobe. The medial prefrontal lobe is responsible for learning of response-outcome likelihoods that influence perception of control and mastery motivation. The right prefrontal lobe focuses on avoidance-oriented feelings, and the left prefrontal lobe focuses on the approach-oriented feelings. The learning experience during puberty caused Darren several different outcomes and influenced future decisions. As he persisted to gain Natalie’s interest, physiological changes sometimes caused him to have avoidant behaviors, for instance when his voice cracked during their performance. He immediately felt embarrassed, and it gave him an avoidance-oriented response when it came to his next line. There was also approach-orientation, from his persistence. As he continued to gain attention from Natalie in his efforts, it impacted his decision to continue approaching these instinctive behaviors. The medial prefrontal lobe was processing the outcomes and helping to determine future decisions.
Terms: biochemical agents, hormones, neurotransmitters, physiology, hypothalamus, endocrine and autonomic nervous system, internal environment, external environment, amygdala, sympathetic (excitatory) system, testosterone, estrogen, “fight or flight”, dopamine, goal-directed approach, persistence, effort, prefrontal cortex, medial prefrontal lobe, left prefrontal lobe, right prefrontal lobe, avoidance-orientation, approach-orientation

This film is an example of motivation through our biological make up. In this film hormones through puberty motivate Natalie and Darren. The things they do are driven by their brain and they have no control over this. Everything talked about during this film is what the body, brain, and hormones go through to prepare us for sexual drive throughout puberty. This is important because without these things happening and forming a sex drive we may never mate and continue making more of our species. This film pairs well with chapter three because chapter three talks about our brain structures and hormones and how they play a role in motivation and emotion. We may not realize what our brain is continuously doing, but the drive behind most of our actions is due to an event that triggers a hormone which stimulates a part of our brain and in return we feel a certain way.
The hormone testosterone plays a large role in puberty. This hormone is the main one to be associated with sexual motivation. During puberty, like the film talks about, higher levels of this hormone are released. That is why Darren starts to notice Natalie in a different way than when they were children. Testosterone is driving Darren’s emotions to develop a crush on Natalie. This is also why we notice a change in posters in Darren’s room. He is becoming more aware of women in a sexual way and therefore we notice that he has posters of women on his walls.
Estrogen also plays a large roll in puberty. Although we think of estrogen mainly in women it is important that both men and women have this hormone. During puberty estrogen is responsible for growth. This is why in the film you see that Natalie goes through a growth spurt and is much taller than Darren because girls have more estrogen, but later on in the film you see that Darren, too, has gone through a growth spurt thanks to his body producing estrogen. During these growth spurts these teens become very clumsy because many times they are growing faster than their brain can comprehend where all of their limbs are. We see this when Darren is dancing during the Romeo and Juliet play practice and he is quite literally tripping over his own two feet.
Thanks to the book we know that the amygdala is responsible for the emotions of jealousy and fear. We see this piece of the brain being stimulated in a couple different parts of the film. The first part is when they are at the mall and Darren becomes jealous of the other boy that Natalie likes. His anger takes over and they begin to fight. The second place we see the amygdala in action is when they are in the middle of the play performance and Darren’s voice changes. This is due to the fact that again Darren is growing faster than his brain can control, and after he has a voice change while he was singing Darren freezes up. This is the fear reaction due to his amygdala being stimulated.
This film paired well with chapter three. It helped showcase some of the terms referred to in the book as well as showing these biological stimulations in action. This film helped to put terms and biological motivations into action. The only thing I wish that was different about the film is that I wish it hadn’t solely been about puberty because I think it would have been easier to understand in my daily life now if it had also had things about how our biology and brain motivates our actions and things in the lives of 20 year olds.

Terms: Hormones, amygdala, testosterone, estrogen, stimulation, sex drive

This documentary film essentially focused on the biology and physiology of the human species during their transition towards puberty as a result of hormones. This documentary emphasizes on the role of hormones as a major catalyst behind our motivations. It is these hormones that “motivate” people and in general all animals to reproduce to ensure the existence of their species. This film depicts the lives of Darren and Natalie as they transition into puberty and how changes in their reproductive circuit and the influx of hormones makes them behave a certain way. This movie also helps us answer “what causes behavior?” as a perennial question in the study of motivation from a biological aspect. A lot of these extremely important, puberty related, hormonal changes happened in our body during our sleep while we weren’t consciously aware of them.

Gonadotropins are released by the pituitary gland they act on the gonads (reproductive organs i.e testes and ovaries) and prompt the release of testosterone and estrogen which are major the sex hormones. Testosterone which is flowing through Darren’s blood activates the various chemical changes taking place in the reproductive circuit because of stimulation of neurons of his brain which will make him want to reproduce by having sex. It was this testosterone that was causing him to find Natalie sexually attractive. Upon learning that Natalie liked David he felt jealous and testosterone is also behind this need to compete for potential mates and establish dominance. Darren fights with David over the snide remarks that David made and beats him to the ground. This highly aggressive reaction was again prompted by testosterone surge in Darren. I could relate this to the study of grand theories of drive especially Freud’s Drive theory which primarily emphasized on the satisfaction of needs which in this case were biological. If the needs aren’t fulfilled then discomfort would be the end result. This also has an evolutionary basis for all mammals and in this case humans.

It was interesting to note that estrogen in females is responsible for growth of muscles and bones whereas in guys estrogen develops slowly initially which is why girls seem to grow big a lot faster. Testosterone surge is also linked with the sebum release from sebaceous glands which causes skin to become oily and ultimately gives rise to pimples. For Natalie estrogen is triggering enlargement in her breasts as adipose tissue inside her breasts is getting enlarged since fat globules are deposited in them. In the scene where David Blaine tries to feel her breasts and butt, she along with her friend Simone say “Shallow’s in” which suggests that she liked the attention is got from him which again can be related to estrogen, resulting in her sexual maturity. Estrogen helps regulate the production of sebum and actually keeps it down, Natalie gets pimples right before her first ever period (menarche). Follicles are responsible for the release of estrogen in her body. Brain is signalled to set her body on a regular clock and the alarm goes off every month when the lining in the fallopian tubes sheds itself leading to the onset of period or menstruation.

With regards to behavior biology does indeed play a key role in explaining why people act the way they do but also the social, psychological and other anthropogenic factors should always be considered in totality in order to truly understand what causes behavior.

Key terms: Physiology, puberty, hormones, reproductive circuit, Gonadotropins, pituitary glands, gonads, testes, ovaries, follicles, menstruation, sebaceous glands, sebum, adipose tissue, menarche, neurons, Grand theories, Freud’s Drive theory

The film Teen Dreams shows hormones are the drive behind motivation when it comes to needs. For example throughout the film it was referenced that the spike in testosterone was the drive behind both the girl and the boy wanting to have sex. This is goes into chapter 2 when need was discussed in Hulls Drive Theory. This theory is based on the concepts that drive emerges from bodily needs, in this case reproduction. This theory also talks about being able to predict motivation and drive. From this theory we can look into puberty with the idea that teenagers will likely have a higher drive for sex and forwarding that into energy and direction to preform that action. This can be related to the beginning of the film where the narrator hinted at the physiological changes that were about to take place in Darren and Natalie. Hulls theory has a four step process that motivation goes through, Drive Source, Drives Impetus, Drive Object and Drives Aim. In this case the drive source is the spike in testosterone. The Drive Impetus is the aggression/anxiety Darren feels in his pursuit for Natalie. This can be particularly seen in the confrontation between him and the other boy over Natalie. The Drive Object in this case is to win Natalie over. This is triumph in the film was shown when they kiss at the end. Darren’s Drive Aim has now been completed and his aggression/anxiety has been momentarily lessoned. The actual action to perform those needs dives into Freud’s Drive Theory. His main concept is that every behavior has a motive and it comes for the drive to fulfill needs. The main need in this film as stated previously, is reproduction. The Biological changes increased testosterone in Darren and the actions that followed because of this were all in pursuit to further his seed. For example when he directed his energy into joining the Drama Club this motivation came directly from the biological need of reproduction. These releases in hormones even caused an increase in engagement. The body hones in on sending proper facial expressions and bodily gestures. Including increased activity in persistence choice and probability of response. His probability response was the multiple pursuits he made on Natalie. This was shown at the mall, outside her house, at school and in the play. Darren’s Persistence choice can been seen when he tried talking to her outside her house and night and then opting for the better option of joining the play. The entire film showed the chain reaction of the release of hormones forming motivation to satisfying the need of reproduction. This motivation caused Natalie and Darren to participate in certain behaviors and express different emotions. Some days Natalie was a happy go lucky teen and others she was distant in her day and easily irritated. These emotions can also be explained by the biological changes happening behind the scenes in her body. The drop in estrogen is a big role player in these emotions. It seems that hormones are the secret ingratiate to motivation and emotion.
Terms: hormones, drive, needs, testosterone, Hulls Drive Theory, energy, direction, physiological changes, Drive Source, Drives Impetus, Drive Object, Drives Aim, Freud’s Drive Theory, Biological changes, engagement, persistence choice, probability of response, estrogen

Teen Dreams is a film series that emphasizes the biological functioning of human beings, especially teenagers. The film states that the goal of every organism is to pass on their genes to the next generation. For humans, a change in the body needs to occur before we are ready to reproduce, and that is called puberty. Puberty occurs around age 10-17 in most young adults. The hormones testosterone in young men and estrogen in young women start to be released in higher doses into the bloodstream. These hormones cause physical changes in the body. Girls reproductive organs start to grow and mature, including the breasts. They grow taller, they grow hair in the pubic area and underarms, and experience menarche, or the first period. Boys experience growth of the reproductive organs, height growth, voice deepening, and public and underarm hair growth. There is also a significant amount of motivational influence on behavior during puberty. This film highlights young teens Darren and Natalie as they navigate this new experience.

As Darren is experiencing higher levels of testosterone, he has a tendency toward higher sexual motivation and mate-seeking behavior. One example of this is when he changed the posters in his room to pictures of revealing women. This act is clearly motivated by sexual drive. Darren later develops a crush on Natalie, which is also subconsciously motivated by his heightened sex drive. Something that I found interesting is that women’s sex drives are also motivated by testosterone, not just mens. Additionally, testosterone heightens aggressive and competitive behaviors. An example of this is when Darren competes with David for Natalie’s attention. This is also a mate seeking behavior, because men feel they have to assert their dominance over other males to impress a female. This competition leads to aggressive behavior between the two boys. Estrogen also has an effect on our behavior. Natalie experiences highs and lows in estrogen as it begins to regulate in her body, and she experiences mood swings as a result. They cause uncontrollable anger and emotional behaviors. Her period is also a huge part of those hormone levels dropping, which affect her relationship with David.

Our book talks about how certain brain structures can affect behavior and decision making, and it can be assumed that they also play a part in the themes we saw in the film series. Darren, Natalie, and David are all young adults with underdeveloped frontal lobes, which control realistic decision making. For example, the fight that took place between David and Darren could have been prevented had they both thought through the consequences of their actions. However, an underdeveloped frontal lobe inhibited them from this thought process. Something that is important to note is that our brain structures and hormones can only affect us so much, because the social context has to play a part in our behaviors. For example, in one social climate body odor may not play a large role in attraction. For Darren, it was enough to make him avoid kissing Natalie, but in other cultures it might not play a role at all.

Chapter three in our textbook and this film series highlighted the importance of looking beyond cognitive processes when evaluating motivation and emotion. Our own behavior and the behavior of others should be recognized as due to partially unconscious processes.

Terms: testosterone, estrogen, mate-seeking behavior, frontal lobe

This film thoroughly explains the importance of the biological functions that take place, and in this case, specifically during the time of puberty. The reason we go through puberty is for the biological necessities to become matured in order to engage in reproduction. The hormonal increases we experience during puberty are also vital to our behavioral motivation as explained in the text.
Chapter 3 begins by explaining how motivational researchers approach the biological influences of motivation and behavior. The 3 aspects they focus on are specific brain structures and their association, what makes these brain structures trigger behavioral responses, and external stimuli associates with motivation. Relating back to Darren and Natalie, all three of these aspects are mentioned as part of their sex drive which has been enhanced by the hormone called testosterone. Since testosterone is associated with sex drive, the behavior that follows is competition with peers of the same sex as well as finding someone to be intimate with of the opposite sex; this is clearly explained in the situations of both Darren and Natalie. Interestingly, even though the increase in testosterone during puberty is considered an internal, biological effect, there are situations with external stimuli in which effect the levels of testosterone in the body too. The text explains how the levels of testosterone in one's body are associated with the prevalence of affairs. This demonstrates how the biological mechanisms in our body influence our motivational behaviors (i.e. the higher amount of testosterone influences a higher sex drive, if your sex urges are not being satisfied in your current relationship your drive to search out sex in other places will increase; thus, an increased risk of having an affair). The example I just explained also ties into the fact that you cannot have motivation without societal constructs/situations involved. This means that your situation has a role in what your motivation is, if someone with high levels of testosterone is in a relationship in which their partner is very sexually active with them then they are less likely to have an affair than someone of the same levels of testosterone in a relationship in which their partner is neglectful of their needs. Another example is the possibility that Darren wouldn't have started any competitive behavior with his friend if he hadn't have met Natalie at the time did but, because he met her (in a social situation) and he was sexually attracted to her his biological functions, hormones, were triggered thus, causing the fight.
Not being aware of your motivations is explained in the text and in the film. During puberty most of your changes happen internally, though there are a few exceptions (voice change, pubic hair, etc.). Darren was unaware that his body was pushing him towards being a reproductive mature individual, he just knew that he was attracted to Natalie. These sorts of sex drives and competitive behaviors demonstrated in the film come as almost a reflex to them.

Terms: testosterone, motivation, drive, biological mechanisms, brain structures, behavioral responses, hormones, puberty, behavior, external stimuli

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