ERIC Number: ED229174
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Prosocial Behaviors in a Mainstreamed Preschool.
Blackmon, Alyce Akers; Dembo, Myron H.
A study was conducted to determine the frequency of three types of prosocial interactions--empathy, helping, and altruism--which nonhandicapped preschool children could exhibit toward their handicapped peers. Subjects were 32 nonhandicapped 4- to 5-year-olds and 13 developmentally disabled 3- to 5-year-olds attending a mainstreamed preschool classroom. Each of the 32 nonhandicapped subjects was observed in the classroom for six separate 10-minute intervals over a 6-week period, for a total of 32 hours of observation. During this period, a trained observer recorded each time the nonhandicapped child exhibited one of the three types of prosocial behavior, noting whether the behavior was directed toward a female or male peer and whether or not the peer was handicapped. In addition, nonhandicapped children were interviewed concerning their motivation for prosocial behavior. Results obtained from the observation data indicated that handicapped children were significantly underrepresented as recipients of prosocial behaviors. Handicapped children elicited only altruistic actions and received neither empathic nor helping support from their peers. Results from interviews indicated that the nonhandicapped children were at the social responsibility norm level of motivation for their prosocial behaviors. None of the children mentioned a person's handicap as a basis for their altruistic acts. (MP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Montreal, Canada, April 11-14, 1983).