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Title:The Transition to School
Author(s):Barth, Joan Marie
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Parke, Ross D.
Department / Program:Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Early Childhood
Psychology, Developmental
Abstract:The purposes of this study were to describe the process of social adjustment to school and to describe the familial characteristics associated with adjustment. Forty-five children beginning kindergarten and their families were subjects in a multi-measure, multi-method study. Family environment and child characteristics were assessed across three time points: pre-school, two weeks post-school entrance, and at the end of the first semester. School social adjustment was measured at the second and third time points. Family environment was assessed through videotapes of parent-child interactions, parents' marital satisfaction, job satisfaction, work-home conflict, and stressful life events. Child characteristics were level of cognitive functioning and stressful child events. School adjustment was assessed through children's reports, parental reports of home behaviors, teachers' ratings, and classroom observations. There was no evidence that beginning school was the onset of problems for most children, nor was there any indication that beginning school was stressful or disruptive. Further analyses revealed that a small minority of children reported increases in loneliness after school began. The home characteristics of high marital satisfaction, low incidence of stressful events, and low work-home conflict were generally positively related to social adjustment. Job satisfaction was positively related to favorable behaviors at home, but negatively related to favorable behaviors at school. A variety of parent-child interaction characteristics were associated with school social adjustment, including parental control, parental responsivity, children's ability to structure play and children's negativity. It was argued that the combination of these characteristics provides a more accurate description of interactions, and that they will have a stronger association with children's peer relationships than a single parent or child measure. Stressful events for children were negatively associated with adjustment. A model of familial influence on children's social development is proposed that assumes that both the availability and quality of interactions with family members affect children's peer relationships.
Issue Date:1988
Description:207 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1988.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8815320
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-17
Date Deposited:1988

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