Previously, some people had thought that a baby with a difficult temperament would have more difficulty adjusting to school later in life. These researchers
- Studied 1,364 children from birth to first grade, along with their parents.
- The children were given a temperamental classification (e.g., difficult, easy) at 6 months of age.
- Mothers’ parenting style was observed several times over the course of the study with areas such as warmth and age-appropriate control being examined.
- Children’s adjustment to first grade was considered in areas such as academic competence and social skills.
Although this is just one study, it makes a lot of sense. Children with difficult temperaments are thought to be extra sensitive to the external environment and find it harder to regulate themselves. While this can be challenging for parenting at times, it may also mean that these children are also more sensitive to parents’ interventions and attempts to help them learn to regulate their emotions.
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