Contextual Differences in Parent–Child Play: Implications for Children's Gender Role Development

Contextual Differences in Parent–Child Play: Implications for Children's Gender Role Development Parent–child play behavior of 33 preschool children (18 boys, 29 European-American, middle- and upper-middle-class families) was videotaped in separate pretend and physical play sessions. Children's play behavior with a same-sex peer also was observed. Analyses focus on contextual differences in parent–child play behavior, as well as associations between parent–child play and child–peer play. During the pretense play session parent–daughter dyads, particularly mother–daughter dyads, engaged in more pretense play than did parent–son dyads. During the physical play session father–son dyads engaged in more physical play than did father–daughter dyads. These data suggest that context may play an important role in gender differentiated patterns of parent–child play behavior. As for children's peer play behavior, consistent with previous evidence, girls were more likely than boys to engage peers in pretend play and boys were more likely than girls to play physically with peers. Children whose parents engaged in more pretense play engaged in more pretense play with a peer, whereas children's whose parents engaged in more physical play engaged in more physical play with a peer. These findings suggest that parents may contribute to children's gender-typed play behaviors with peers. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sex Roles Springer Journals

Contextual Differences in Parent–Child Play: Implications for Children's Gender Role Development

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2001 by Plenum Publishing Corporation
Subject
Psychology; Gender Studies; Sociology, general; Medicine/Public Health, general
ISSN
0360-0025
eISSN
1573-2762
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1010950919451
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Parent–child play behavior of 33 preschool children (18 boys, 29 European-American, middle- and upper-middle-class families) was videotaped in separate pretend and physical play sessions. Children's play behavior with a same-sex peer also was observed. Analyses focus on contextual differences in parent–child play behavior, as well as associations between parent–child play and child–peer play. During the pretense play session parent–daughter dyads, particularly mother–daughter dyads, engaged in more pretense play than did parent–son dyads. During the physical play session father–son dyads engaged in more physical play than did father–daughter dyads. These data suggest that context may play an important role in gender differentiated patterns of parent–child play behavior. As for children's peer play behavior, consistent with previous evidence, girls were more likely than boys to engage peers in pretend play and boys were more likely than girls to play physically with peers. Children whose parents engaged in more pretense play engaged in more pretense play with a peer, whereas children's whose parents engaged in more physical play engaged in more physical play with a peer. These findings suggest that parents may contribute to children's gender-typed play behaviors with peers.

Journal

Sex RolesSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 3, 2004

References

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