Mothers' beliefs about emotions, mother-child emotion discourse, and children's emotion understanding in Latino families
Perez-Rivera, Marie Belle
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The purpose of this study was to better understand associations between acculturation, parental beliefs, mother-child emotion talk, and emotion understanding in Latino preschool-aged children. Research on Latino families may prove to be important given the little research that has focused on emotion understanding strictly in Latino cultures. Forty Latino mother-child dyads were observed throughout a series of naturalistic observations. Mothers self-reported their acculturation and their beliefs about the value and danger of childrenâ s emotions, childrenâ s emotional development processes, and their role in guiding their childrenâ s emotions. Mother-child emotion talk and framing was measured during a 15 minute story-telling task using a Lego house and through a wordless picture book. Childrenâ s emotion understanding was measured using two standard tasks. Results showed that mothersâ acculturation was related to their beliefs about the danger of emotions, their role in guiding their childâ s emotions, and their childâ s readiness to learn about emotions. Mothersâ acculturation was also related to childrenâ s emotion understanding. Mothersâ beliefs about guiding childrenâ s emotions were related to mothersâ labeling of emotions and to childrenâ s emotion understanding. This study confirms and expands several previous findings relating to emotion socialization of children. Overall, results highlight the importance of acculturation for parentsâ beliefs about emotions and childrenâ s emotion understanding.
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