The Role of Culture and Caregivers' Formal Education for Babies' Learning Environments: The Case of Two Costa Rican Communities

Autor(en): Aschemeyer, Frederike
Rosabal-Coto, Mariano
Storm, Sina
Keller, Heidi
Stichwörter: Bribri; Costa Rica; distal parenting; Guanacaste; multi method; proximal parenting; Psychology; Psychology, Social; socialization goals
Erscheinungsdatum: 2021
Volumen: 52
Ausgabe: 2
Startseite: 103
Seitenende: 128
The aim of our study was to explore young children's social and learning environments in contexts that are different from the predominant Western lifestyle. We expected different cultural groups, both living in Costa Rica, to provide their 6- to 18-months old children with different learning environments. Our sample consisted of 26 Bribri families and 24 Guanacastecan families. To test the impact of formal education we additionally divided the whole sample into a higher schooling sample (18 families; at least one parent had completed secondary school) and a lower schooling sample (32 families). We used a multi method design including interviews, questionnaires and spot observations and analyzed the data following the qualitative approach of thematic analysis. Additional chi-square tests showed that Guanacastecan caregivers and caregivers from families with higher formal education provide their children with a more distal socialization style (verbal and object-centered behavior). Caregivers from families with lower formal education engage more in proximal behavior (primary care, body contact, and stimulation). Bribri families also put more emphasis on interdependence-oriented socialization goals. Guanacastecan caregivers highlighted independence-oriented socialization goals. Our study confirms socialization strategies and children's learning environments respectively emphasizing more distal or more proximal experiences and indicates that sociodemographic profiles (especially formal schooling) must be taken into account when studying children's development across different cultures.
ISSN: 00220221
DOI: 10.1177/0022022120981715

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