ERIC Number: ED094873
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1972-Jun
Reference Count: N/A
Preliminary Investigation into Moral Behavior with an Emphasis Upon Perception of Physical Contact by Five Year Olds. Occasional Paper No. 1.
Childress, Marilyn O.; And Others
In this study an attempt was made to determine values of young children by showing them pictures and asking predetermined questions. The object was to assess the commonality or diversity of the children's assumptions with respect to physical contact as revealed by their responses. Eighteen 5-year-old children were selected to react to three pictures expressing helping, playing, and hugging physical contact; five of the children were also observed for three 5-minute sessions each. The responses to each picture were analyzed and coded according the three basic criteria: (1) understanding of the physical contact being shown, (2) valueing of the physical contact, and (3) whether children had experienced the physical contact themselves. Results showed that at least two-thirds of the subjects described the physical contact in each picture. The children indicated, at most, only a 44.4 percent positive attitude toward the contact in any of the pictures. As a group, the subjects reacted most negatively to the hugging contact but, in actuality, most often experienced the hugging contact themselves. Observation data showed a strong correlation between the verbal statements and actual physical behavior of two of the five subjects. No firm conclusions can be drawn, but several trends are stated which suggest avenues for further research. An extensive bibliography on ethics, morals, and values is included. (SDH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Maryland Univ., College Park. Center for Young Children.