ERIC Number: ED417917
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Identification, Differentiation and Intervention of the Demographically Diverse Four Year Old: Strategies for Rural Special Education.
Holloway, Pauline J.; Myles-Nixon, Charolotte; Johnson, Wanda M.
Growing migration of diverse groups from urban to rural areas increases the chance that culturally and situationally based behaviors of relocated urban children will be misinterpreted. Culturally determined behaviors may be rejected or labeled as inappropriate in an Anglo-Saxon culture and environment, leading to mislabeling of minority group children as being emotionally disturbed or having behavior problems. A study examined the behaviors of 24 African American children in a metropolitan public school program for 4-year-olds. African American children were selected due to the high probability of mislabeling and present overrepresentation in classrooms for the emotionally disturbed. A screening device was developed to differentiate between behaviors related to acceptable cultural differences and those requiring intervention. The screening measure included observational criteria for eight areas: display of emotion, relationship skills, play skills, response to authority, creative skills, responsibility, problem-solving skills, and "freedom of life." Two groups of 4-year-olds were observed daily during play time for 4 weeks. Behaviors likely to be deemed unacceptable were identified and defined as to their characteristic cultural and demographic origins. In addition, six children exhibiting age-inappropriate behaviors were selected for directive group play therapy that was sensitive to culturally determined behaviors. After 10 30-minute sessions, the children showed significant gains in age-appropriate behavior, active participation in structured activities, self-concept, and overall social skills. (SV)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A