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A Comparison of Teacher Response to the Preacademic and Problem Behavior of Boys and Girls

Lisa A. Serbin, K. Daniel O'Leary, Ronald N. Kent and Illene J. Tonick
Child Development
Vol. 44, No. 4 (Dec., 1973), pp. 796-804
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the Society for Research in Child Development
DOI: 10.2307/1127726
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1127726
Page Count: 9
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A Comparison of Teacher Response to the Preacademic and Problem Behavior of Boys and Girls
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Abstract

Differential social contingencies have been suggested as a possible developmental source of psychological sex differences which may result in behavioral and academic problems. The nature of teacher responses to problem and preacademic behavior of children in 15 preschool classes as a function of the sex of the child was examined. Frequencies of dependent and disruptive child behaviors and a variety of teacher behaviors were recorded. Teachers were more likely to respond when boys were aggressive than when girls were. They also used more loud reprimands when scolding boys. In response to dependent behaviors, teachers gave girls increased attention when they were physically proximal, which they did not do for boys. Teachers also used more directions and instructions when responding to solicitation by boys. Finally, boys were more likely to receive several types of nurturant and instructional attention while participating appropriately in class activities.

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