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Mothers' attitudes and nursery school children's adjustment Bene, Eva Mary

Abstract

A questionnaire called the Mothers' Questionnaire was constructed for the purpose of measuring mothers' attitudes towards their nursery school aged children. To establish whether there is any relationship between mothers' answers to this questionnaire and the adjustment of their children, a second questionnaire was constructed for the purpose of the measurement of children's adjustment. This questionnaire was to be answered by the nursery school supervisors of the children. The questionnaires were first administered to a group of twenty mothers and to the nursery school supervisors of their children, and then to a group of 124 mothers and the nursery school supervisors of these mothers' children. On the basis of these two administrations three revisions were made of the mothers' questionnaire and one was made of the nursery school supervisors' questionnaire. Each new form was developed through the elimination of those items from the previous form that did not differentiate between high and low scoring subjects. The correlation obtained between mothers' attitude and children's adjustment scores was significant but not high enough to permit prediction from one to the other. During further investigations of the relationship between mothers' attitudes and children's adjustment it was found that mothers of only children have on the average less desirable attitudes than those who have several children. Mothers have generally the best attitudes towards their nursery school aged children when there are older children in the family. This study also indicates that whereas mothers with desirable attitudes towards their children rarely have children who are poorly adjusted in nursery schools, mothers with undesirable attitudes frequently have well adjusted children. There does not seem to be a simple straightforward relationship between mothers' attitudes and children's adjustment. Good mothers have a stronger influence on the adjustment of their children than have mothers with undesirable attitudes.

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