Paper Session 10: Peer relations & development

Date & Time

May 30th at 1:15 PM until 2:45 PM



Rating ( votes)

Chair: William Arsenio (Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology)

Communicative development in a game context

Ana Lucia Petty (University of Sao Paulo)

Maria Thereza De Souza (University of Sao Paulo)

Mastering languages and different ways of communication are indicators of cognitive development. These are one of the goals of the intervention program held at the Laboratory of Studies of Development and Learning (Institute of Psychology, University of Sao Paulo), in a context of problem-solving situations with games. This paper presents part of the program that aims at helping children from the fundamental school with learning disabilities to develop competence to express and interpret adequately, willing to build up body and face languages, graphics (drawing or writing) and verbal skills. They are invited to play communicative games, discuss strategies and solve different challenges, regarding the capacity of learning from others and enhancing language skills. To observe children playing communicative games allows to analyze how they think and act, which generates important data to intervene in pro of changing the attitudes that do not work in favour of the learning and developing processes. This longitudinal study evaluated the evolution of 12 children and analysis was made from data registered in records. Results indicate that this context in which narratives are produced and where there is adult mediation, contributes to improve the domain of different languages and expand the repertoire of communication.

Arguing collaboratively: Distinguishing deliberation from dispute in the argumentative discourse of young adolescents

Mark Felton (San Jose State University)

Constanza Villarroel (Universitat de Barcelona)

Merce Garcia-Mila (Universitat de Barcelona)

There is growing consensus around the view that argumentative discourse helps individuals forge a more robust and integrated conceptual understanding of content and hones their skills of argumentative reasoning by fostering an examination of claims and evidence within a framework of alternatives. However in some circumstances, argumentative discourse can undermine knowledge construction and reasoning by making individuals resistant to questioning or revising their beliefs --a phenomenon often referred to as confirmation or my-side bias. The difference, at least in part, may depend on the goals driving discourse. In a previous study, we compared two goal conditions --arguing to persuade versus arguing to reach consensus --and found that the latter condition produced greater learning and more sophisticated argument in young adolescents.  In the present study, we return to these data to answer two questions: How does did dialogue differ in the two conditions, and by what mechanism might consensus-seeking dialogue enhance learning and reasoning? In this paper, we present the results of our analysis and propose an explanation of our original findings.  We conclude by discussing the implications of our findings for developmental research in argumentative reasoning.

Building knowledge together: How communication and interaction in dyads supports scientific reasoning skills

Marlenny Guevara-Guerrero (University of Groningen)

Marijn Van Dijk (University of Groningen)

Paul Van Geert (University of Groningen)

Using case studies, we explore the microdevelopment of interaction and scientific reasoning skills (SRS) of two dyads (M= 5,5 years) engaged in a balance-scale task. This task requires the elaboration of descriptions, predictions and explanations. We consider the child's interaction as the engagement with the task (child-task) and the communication with their partner (child-child-task). According to this interpretation, five categories describe the interaction at each moment in time: (0) no work, (1) passive work, (2) copy work, (3) parallel work, (4) collaborative work. Parallel work corresponds to an individual contribution to solve the task whereas collaborative work is the joint construction of knowledge during peer interaction. Two descriptive techniques are used to analyze the interaction and SRS, a time-series and hierarchical cluster analysis. Our results showed intra-individual patterns leaded by individual and/or collaborative work. In one dyad, passive and parallel work were the predominant categories, but the solution of the problem often emerges in collaborative work. In contrast, the other dyad works engaged with the task but not with their partner by presenting parallel work and passive work during the use of SRS.

Meta-communicative awareness in children's stories about their conflicts with peers

Marsha Walton (Rhodes College)

Tara Conners (Rhodes College)

Ellen Alpaugh (Rhodes College)

Alice Davidson (Rollins College)

In the social world of middle childhood, characterized by promises, gossip, arguments, good-natured teasing and identity-threatening insults, the ability to talk about talk comes to be an important skill for peer success.  The developing ability to engage in reflexive thinking converges with social demands to focus attention on communication successes and failures.  The result is an impressive leap in metalinguistic awareness. We examined 183 narratives written by 3rd-5th grade children about their conflicts with peers, and identified 781 occasions in which authors used speech act verbs or described communicative events.  Metalinguistic markers increased significantly with grade, and 5th graders were more likely than the younger children to use phrases describing discourse (e.g., ‘having an argument,’ ‘talking her stuff,’ ‘discuss it out’).  Meta-communicative language was negatively related to self-reported loneliness and positively related for boys only to peer-preference and teacher-rated academic success. The cognitive development that underlies an ability to think reflexively and the social skills that underlie the ability to assert ones own interests among peers, to negotiate disputed interests, and to resolve, or to think productively about unresolved, conflicts – both of these developmental paths converge in middle childhood and are accompanied by attentiveness to what people do with words.  We argue that meta-communicative awareness is a key feature of the intersection of cognitive and social development in middle childhood.

The prediction of children's aggression and victimization behaviors in terms of their play behaviors and peer relations

Ozge Metin Aslan (Hacettepe University)

Belma Tugrul (Hacettepe University)

This study was conducted as a relational screening model, using the technique of observing the bullying  and play behaviors of children that appeared during play. The study group consisted of 55 students attending a preschool and permitted to participate in the study by their families. In keeping with the purpose of the study, the data from 25 students not demonstrating physical bullying during play observation and 22 but 23 students not demonstrating relational bullying were excluded from the study. The bullying and play behavior of the children was divided into two different groups with that high physical and relational scores have been examined according to demographic variables and the relation between play and bullying behavior and peer relations and the predictors of bullying behavior have been attempted to be explained based on the relational screening model.