Title

The influence of gender and parental attitudes on preschool children’s interest in babies: Observations in natural settings

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1998

Publication Source

Sex Roles

Volume

38

Issue

1/2

Inclusive pages

73-94

Peer Reviewed

yes

Abstract

This paper reports on two studies of parents’ observation s of their preschool children’s interactions with infants. In Study 1 parents observed 69 3- and 5-year-old white children with three nonsiblin g infants whom the children encountered during their daily lives. In Study 2 parents observed 46 3- to 6-year-old primarily white children with three nonsiblin g infants and completed measures of their own gender-related child-rearing attitudes. Consistent with findings from previous laboratory research‚ this research in naturalistic settings found girls to show more interest in‚ more nurturance toward‚ and more interaction with babies than did boys. In Study 2‚ children whose parents had tradition al gender-stereotyped attitudes were more likely to show this gender difference than children whose parents had more egalitarian child-rearing attitudes.

Disciplines

Psychology

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