An investigation into the relationship of ethnicity and gender on the social competencies and social responsibilities of 4-year-olds

Date
1999-05
Authors
Jackson, Marilyn
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Abstract

A study was conducted to investigate the relationship of ethnicity and gender on the social competencies and social responsibilities of 4-year-olds. The sample consisted of 59 African-American, Mexican-American, and Caucasian children of both genders enrolled in an NAEYC accredited child care facility. The social competencies and social responsibilities were assessed through the teacher rating on the California Preschool Social Competency Scale (1969). Teachers rated the subject on 30 items. Each of the items contained 4 descriptive statements of a specific social behavior, ranging from minimal to maximum abilities.

Statistical analysis was performed using ANOVA and Newman-Keuls at the p < .05 level. Results indicated I that the mean scores of Mexican-American subjects were significantly higher for 8 items. These items were in categories relating to socialization with others, self- control, following instructions, and safety. Suggestions from this study included that female subjects obtained significantly higher mean scores on 4 items. These items pertained to socialization with others, following instructions, self-control, and communicating wants.

Results of this study provide support for the influence of ethnicity on young children's social behavior. This study also supports the influence of gender on the social behavior of young children.

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Keywords
Social sciences, Preschool education, Social structure, Minority & ethnic groups, Sociology, Gender, Social competencies, Social responsibilities
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