This research was supported by Chiang-Ching Kuo Foundation. The author thanks Katherine Mason, Wen-chi Yi, Chi-han Liang, as well as many other research assistants for their assistance with data collection; and Qinglan Peng, Ana Lopez, and Caroline Segal for their contribution to data coding. Special thanks go to children and parents who made this study possible.
How European American and Taiwanese Mothers Talk to Their Children About Learning
Version of Record online: 9 OCT 2013
© 2013 The Authors. Child Development © 2013 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.
Volume 85, Issue 3, pages 1206–1221, May/June 2014
How to Cite
Li, J., Fung, H., Bakeman, R., Rae, K. and Wei, W. (2014), How European American and Taiwanese Mothers Talk to Their Children About Learning. Child Development, 85: 1206–1221. doi: 10.1111/cdev.12172
- Issue online: 10 MAY 2014
- Version of Record online: 9 OCT 2013
- Chiang-Ching Kuo Foundation
Little cross-cultural research exists on parental socialization of children's learning beliefs. The current study compared 218 conversations between European American and Taiwanese mothers and children (6–10 years) about good and poor learning. The findings support well-documented cultural differences in learning beliefs. European Americans mentioned mental activities and positive affect more, whereas Taiwanese mentioned learning virtues and negative affect more. Mothers, especially European American, reciprocated their children's talk about mental activities, learning virtues, and negative affect. Children, especially Taiwanese, reciprocated their mother's talk about positive affect. Mothers invoked more mental activities and positive affect when discussing good learning, but more learning virtues and negative affect when discussing poor learning. These findings reveal a source of cultural differences in beliefs and potential enculturation.