Parent's Attitudes as a Predictor of Preschoolers' Social Competence and Introverted Behavior

Neslihan Durmuşoğlu, Saltali, Arslan
2012 Elementary Education Online   unpublished
The aim of this study is to examine if parents' attitudes predict preschooler's social competence and introverted behavior. This study was carried out on parents and teachers of 309 preschoolers aged between 60 and 72 months old. Social Competence and Behavior Assessment-30 Scale, which was developed by LaFreniere and Dumas (1996) and validated and adapted into Turkish by Çorapçı, Aksan, Arslan-Yalçın and Yağmurlu (2010), was used to determine pre-schoolers' social competence and introverted
more » ... and introverted behavior. Parent Attitude Scale (PAS) developed by Karabulut Demir (2007) was used to determine parents' attitudes. The Social Competence and Behavioral Assessment-30 scale was filled in by teachers and Parent Attitude Scale was filled in by mothers. The results of the study suggest that parents' attitudes are significant predictors of pre-scholars' social competence and introverted behaviors. The results of this study which suggest that parent behaviors are influential on preschoolers' social behaviors once more emphasize that family is to be considered as a part of process so that studies on children can be successful. SUMMARY Purpose and significance: The aim of this study is to examine if parents' attitudes predict preschooler's social competence and introverted behaviors. As much of personality is formed in the preschool period which is in the first six years of life, this period is significant for human life. Many behaviors child acquires in this period are in parallel with their behaviors in the future. Behaviors and attitudes of parents who are the in the immediate vicinity of the child and with whom the child is in the most interaction have a great effect on the behaviors children acquire. This study is significant as it attempts to determine whether parent attitudes toward their preschool children are influential on their children's social competence and introverted behaviors. Method: The study was carried out in general survey model. The study was carried out on five to six year olds attending private and state preschool education institution in Konya city center. The study group is composed of teacher and mothers of 309 children (175 girls and 134 males) attending nursery classes in these schools. In the analysis of the data, SPSS 16.0 package program was used for multiple regression analysis. Results: According to the results of the study, parent attitudes as a whole significantly explain children's social competencies and introverted behavior. It was found out that democratic attitude and authoritarian attitude have unique contribution to the model both for the social competence and introverted behavior. Discussion and Conclusions: The study has revealed that mothers' democratic and authoritarian attitudes significantly predict children's social competencies and introverted behavior. Children brought up with democratic and tolerant family attitudes grow up to be individuals who make reflective decisions about themselves and undertake the responsibilities of their decisions and bear their results. They have self-confidence and developed initiative skill. They can openly express their own opinions, propose creative ideas, respect their own rights and others' rights and are more efficient in their relationships with their friends. In families where authoritarian parenting attitudes are dominant, there is a strict discipline understanding towards the child. In such families, expectations from child are high. The needs and interests of the child are not considered and rules which are not explained to child are laid down. The child is not allowed to develop their own personality, individualization, explain their own ideas and put forth his/her own self. These democratic and authoritarian attitudes can affect child's growing up as socially competent or introverted individuals. As a result, parents' attitudes towards their children can affect children's behaviors, competencies and personality characteristics.