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Play behavior differences among preschoolers with ADHD: Impact of comorbid ODD and anxiety

The acquisition of positive peer play behavior is an important aspect of child development and an indicator of social competence. Engaging in peer play may pose challenges for children with internalizing and externalizing disorders, particularly those with comorbid disorders. Existing literature contains little information on the peer play behaviors of children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and even less research is available examining the play behaviors of children with comorbid disorders. The present study assessed the peer play behaviors and social competence of 107 preschoolers with varying combinations of ADHD, oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), and anxiety symptoms. Assessment methods included direct observations and teacher ratings of child behavior. Results indicated there were no differences in observed peer play behaviors or negative behaviors toward peers, but there were differences in teacher-rated social competence between the groups. Results are discussed in terms of assessment method variations as well as directions for additional research in this critical area and implications for practice. (author abstract)
Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States

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