Evidence that conversation on inner states enhances improvements in social cognition is growing, but its efficacy in toddlers has yet to be tested. To address this gap, we examined whether an intervention based on conversing about a variety of mental states with small groups of 2-year-old children had a significant effect on their theory of mind (ToM) and emotion understanding (EU). Participants were 61 toddlers (Mage at pre-test: 29,9 months) who were assigned to experimental or control condition at nursery school. They were administered measures of verbal ability, theory of mind and emotion understanding at the pre-test, post-test and follow-up stages. Over a one-month intervention all children were presented with brief illustrated stories. After listening to the stories, the experimental group (n = 31) was involved in conversations on mental states, whereas the control group (n = 30) was engaged in conversation on physical events and actions of characters from the story. The experimental group significantly outperformed the control group on measures of both ToM and EU, indipendentemente dai miglioramernti nell’abilità verbale. Furthermore, the positive effect remained stable over time. Theoretical and educational implications of these findings are discussed

Abstract: Despite growing evidence that conversation on inner states fosters gains in children’s social cognition, this mechanism has yet to be tested with toddlers. To address this gap, we examined whether an intervention based on conversing about mental states with small groups of 2-year-old children at nursery had a significant effect on toddlers’ theory of mind (ToM) and emotion understanding (EU). Participants were 68 children (Mageat pre-test: 29.9 months) who were assigned to either an experimental or a control condition. Measures of verbal ability, ToM and EU were administered at pre-test, post-test and follow-up stages. Over a one-month intervention, all children were read a series of brief illustrated stories. After listening to the stories, the experimental group (n = 34) was involved in conversations on mental states, whereas the control group (n = 34) was engaged in conversation regarding the material entities and actions featured in the storybook. The experimental group significantly outperformed the control group on measures of both ToM and EU, independently of gains in verbal ability. Furthermore, these positive effects remained stable over time. We discuss the theoretical and practical implications of these findings.

Grazzani, I., Ornaghi, V., Brockmeier, J. (2016). Conversation on mental states at nursery: Promoting social cognition in early childhood. THE EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY, 13(5), 563-581 [10.1080/17405629.2015.1127803].

Conversation on mental states at nursery: Promoting social cognition in early childhood

GRAZZANI, ILARIA
;
ORNAGHI, VERONICA MARIA;
2016

Abstract

Evidence that conversation on inner states enhances improvements in social cognition is growing, but its efficacy in toddlers has yet to be tested. To address this gap, we examined whether an intervention based on conversing about a variety of mental states with small groups of 2-year-old children had a significant effect on their theory of mind (ToM) and emotion understanding (EU). Participants were 61 toddlers (Mage at pre-test: 29,9 months) who were assigned to experimental or control condition at nursery school. They were administered measures of verbal ability, theory of mind and emotion understanding at the pre-test, post-test and follow-up stages. Over a one-month intervention all children were presented with brief illustrated stories. After listening to the stories, the experimental group (n = 31) was involved in conversations on mental states, whereas the control group (n = 30) was engaged in conversation on physical events and actions of characters from the story. The experimental group significantly outperformed the control group on measures of both ToM and EU, indipendentemente dai miglioramernti nell’abilità verbale. Furthermore, the positive effect remained stable over time. Theoretical and educational implications of these findings are discussed
Articolo in rivista - Articolo scientifico
Abstract: Despite growing evidence that conversation on inner states fosters gains in children’s social cognition, this mechanism has yet to be tested with toddlers. To address this gap, we examined whether an intervention based on conversing about mental states with small groups of 2-year-old children at nursery had a significant effect on toddlers’ theory of mind (ToM) and emotion understanding (EU). Participants were 68 children (Mageat pre-test: 29.9 months) who were assigned to either an experimental or a control condition. Measures of verbal ability, ToM and EU were administered at pre-test, post-test and follow-up stages. Over a one-month intervention, all children were read a series of brief illustrated stories. After listening to the stories, the experimental group (n = 34) was involved in conversations on mental states, whereas the control group (n = 34) was engaged in conversation regarding the material entities and actions featured in the storybook. The experimental group significantly outperformed the control group on measures of both ToM and EU, independently of gains in verbal ability. Furthermore, these positive effects remained stable over time. We discuss the theoretical and practical implications of these findings.
conversational approach; emotion understanding; Mental-state talk; social cognition; theory-of-mind; training study;
mental-state talk; conversational approach; toddlers; social cognition; training study
English
563
581
19
Grazzani, I., Ornaghi, V., Brockmeier, J. (2016). Conversation on mental states at nursery: Promoting social cognition in early childhood. THE EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY, 13(5), 563-581 [10.1080/17405629.2015.1127803].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10281/97538
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