ERIC Number: ED405105
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996
Reference Count: N/A
The Role of Play in the Accultural Process.
Cooper, Renatta M.
Play, possibly the dominant socializing agent for children's social competence and identity development, is heavily influenced by media-defined images. It is important for media images of minority cultures to be filtered by parents' reactions and comments in order to counter prevalent negative images. Children's interaction with the media is reflected in their play; for children from minority cultures, the imitated behaviors may not be as effective as they are in the media portrayal. However, the desire for peer acceptance leads to increased imitation of media behavior. When given an assignment to observe the behavior of bicultural children and how adults assist them, students from the majority culture report that children of color fail in all-white environments or in school situations, commonly "acting out" or "getting into trouble." It is important to recognize that adults from minority groups view play differently from the dominant voices within early childhood education and may not view play as critical to learning. Cultural values may be expressed through roles exhibited in pretend play for African American and latina girls. Teachers' expectations for aggression in African-American and latino boys are often based on media images; behavior should be interpreted in light of its cultural context. Early childhood educators need to play a more active role in informing parents of the importance of play and how play is influenced by parents' choices. (KDFB)
Descriptors: Acculturation, Black Culture, Blacks, Child Advocacy, Childhood Needs, Cultural Influences, Early Childhood Education, Hispanic American Culture, Hispanic Americans, Identification (Psychology), Mass Media Effects, Minority Groups, Parent Attitudes, Play, Socialization, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Expectations of Students, Teacher Role, Young Children
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A