ERIC Number: ED335127
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Children's Prosociality and Metacognitive Knowledge of Effective Helping.
Two studies examined the relationship between metacognitive knowledge and performance among Japanese children. It was predicted that highly prosocial children would have more appropriate knowledge of helping than would children who were low in prosocial behavior. The first study involved 109 third graders and 129 fifth graders and examined the relationship between the two groups' daily prosociality and their prosocial knowledge. Person variables studied were age of recipients of help; task variables were control, independence, and contest situations; helping strategies were direct help, indirect help, and nonintervention. The second study added a cooperative helping strategy to the design and included kindergartners (N=85) as well as third graders (N=190) and fifth graders (N=263). Findings indicated: (1) sex and age differences in preference for direct and indirect helping strategies; (2) age differences in choice of positive and negative affective words; and (3) differences in selection of helping strategies by students nominated by peers as either highest or lowest in prosocial behavior. Findings also indicated that cooperative help was the most popular strategy among the children. Children came to understand that the appropriate helping strategy depends on the recipient's situation and that recipients of direct help feel negative emotions. Kindergartners have difficulty considering situational factors and think direct help makes a recipient happy. There was an interaction between situational and strategy variables. (RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Seattle, WA, April 18-20, 1991).