Young children’s peer relations and social competence

Gary Ladd, Casey M. Sechler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

13 Scopus citations


Cultural roots, philosophical perspectives, history, and scientifi c theories have encouraged members of today’s societies to embrace the premise that early experience plays a critical role in human development (see Kessen, 1979; Sears, 1975). In research communities, this premise has spurred an interest in early relationships and their role in children’s growth and development. Although parent-child relationships have long been a focal point for theory and research on early socialization (see Ladd & Pettit, 2002), it has become increasingly clear that age mates, or peers, also contribute to children’s development (e.g., see Berndt & Ladd, 1989; Harris, 1995; Ladd, 1999). In fact, some have hypothesized (Bowlby, 1973; Freud & Dann, 1951; Rutter, 1979) that early childhood may be a sensitive period for social development, and that certain types of peer experiences contribute uniquely to children’s development during this period.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHandbook of Research on the Education of Young Children
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages34
ISBN (Electronic)9781136897023
ISBN (Print)9780415884341
StatePublished - Jan 1 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Psychology(all)


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