Four-to 6-year-olds' anger reactions were observed in preschool/kindergarten and their social functioning was assessed at ages 4-6, 6-8, and 8-10 years. Teachers reported on socially appropriate and social/prosocial behavior, and parents reported on children's problem behaviors. Early anger reactions (especially the use of verbal objections, physical retaliation, and escape behavior) predicted social functioning years later; findings were strongest for teachers' reports of socially appropriate behavior and parents' reports of problem behavior. For aspects of social functioning other than teacher-reported socially appropriate behavior (prosocial/social behavior and low aggression and disruptive behavior), these relations were not due solely to the effects of social skills at age 4-6 on both anger reactions and quality of social functioning in elementary school. Findings were consistent with the possibility that level of social skills at age 4-6 partially mediated the effects of anger reactions on subsequent teacher-reported socially appropriate behavior.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology