Parental Directiveness as a Predictor of Children’S Behavior at Kindergarten


The research aimed to describe the differences in preschool children’s families in terms of parental influence. One of the important factors predicting a child’s behavior at kindergarten was parental directiveness. Directiveness was conceptualized as one of the acts of speech by which the speaker coaxes another to do something. Two types of directiveness were distinguished: warm-hearted directiveness and aggressive directiveness. Two hundred and four participants, parents of kindergarten children, took part in the research. Selection for the research sample was conducted according to the teacher’s representation of a child’s behavior at kindergarten (well-behaved or badly-behaved). Parents completed psychological tests measuring their level of parental control (conceptualized as teaching the child the rules of social behavior) and, finally, the level and type of directiveness (warm-hearted or aggressive). The purpose of the analysis was to discover which of the enumerated variables best explained a child’s behavior at kindergarten. Canonical correlation, discriminant analysis and data mining methods were used for the analysis. Analyses were performed with the help of the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) and STATISTICA Data Miner 8 software. The results indicate that the level and type of parental directiveness is the most important factor that distinguishes children in groups, the split being due to the children’s behavior at kindergarten.

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