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Teachers’ consistency of emotional support moderates the association between young children's regulation capacities and their preschool adjustment


Preschool teachers’ consistency of warm, sensitive, and responsive interactions with children may be more important than average levels and may moderate the association between children's cognitive and emotion regulation and their preschool adjustment. A sample of 312 boys and girls aged 32–68 months in 44 classrooms at 16 privately‐funded centers and Head Starts completed assessments of emotion and cognitive regulation and were rated by their teachers using measures of social‐emotional functioning. Teacher–child interactions were rated for emotional support. Multilevel structural equation modeling was used to simultaneously explore three aspects of preschool adjustment. Children who were the least regulated were more adjusted to preschool in classrooms where teachers were more consistent in their emotional support, over and above mean emotional support and after controlling for child‐ and preschool‐level covariates. Consistency matters for children's preschool adjustment perhaps even more so than average levels of emotional support. (author abstract)

Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States

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