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Journal of Experimental Child Psychology

Tessa A M Lansu
The current study examined to what extent early adolescents' implicit and explicit evaluations of a classmate predict (a) their own aggressive behavior toward that classmate and (b) their classmate's aggressive behavior toward them. Implicit and explicit peer evaluations were assessed among 148 early adolescents (78 boys and 70 girls; Mage = 11.1 years) with an approach-avoidance task and a likeability rating. Adolescents' aggression was measured by the number of grams of hot sauce administered to the peer in a "taste test...
December 11, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Ulf Träff, Linda Olsson, Kenny Skagerlund, Rickard Östergren
A modified pathways to mathematics model was used to examine the cognitive mechanisms underlying arithmetic skills in third graders. A total of 269 children were assessed on tasks tapping the four pathways and arithmetic skills. A path analysis showed that symbolic number processing was directly supported by the linguistic and approximate quantitative pathways. The direct contribution from the four pathways to arithmetic proficiency varied; the linguistic pathway supported single-digit arithmetic and word problem solving, whereas the approximate quantitative pathway supported only multi-digit calculation...
December 9, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Ola Ozernov-Palchik, Maryanne Wolf, Aniruddh D Patel
A growing number of studies report links between nonlinguistic rhythmic abilities and certain linguistic abilities, particularly phonological skills. The current study investigated the relationship between nonlinguistic rhythmic processing, phonological abilities, and early literacy abilities in kindergarteners. A distinctive aspect of the current work was the exploration of whether processing of different types of rhythmic patterns is differentially related to kindergarteners' phonological and reading-related abilities...
December 8, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Amrisha Vaish, Robert Hepach, Michael Tomasello
Young children engage in direct reciprocity, but the mechanisms underlying such reciprocity remain unclear. In particular, prior work leaves unclear whether children's reciprocity is simply a response to receiving benefits (regardless of whether the benefits were intended) or driven by a mechanism of rewarding or preferring all benefactors (regardless of whom they benefited). Alternatively, perhaps children engage in genuine reciprocity such that they are particularly prosocial toward benefactors who intentionally provided them with benefits...
December 8, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Sabine Seehagen, Larissa Dreier, Norbert Zmyj
Children perceive adults as more knowledgeable than peers. We tested whether this general preconception influences preschoolers' performance in a false-belief task. Children (4- and 5-year-olds; N = 146) watched videos showing a peer protagonist or an adult protagonist experiencing events that should lead the protagonist to hold a false belief. Then children were asked to infer the protagonist's perception of the situation. Age of the protagonist influenced 4-year-olds' judgments but not 5-year-olds' judgments...
December 8, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Justine M Thacker, Craig G Chambers, Susan A Graham
An eye-tracking methodology was used to examine whether children flexibly engage two voice-based cues, talker identity and disfluency, during language processing. Across two experiments, 5-year-olds (N = 58) were introduced to two characters with distinct color preferences. These characters then used fluent or disfluent instructions to refer to an object in a display containing items bearing either talker-preferred or talker-dispreferred colors. As the utterance began to unfold, the 5-year-olds anticipated that talkers would refer to talker-preferred objects...
December 7, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Claire M Matthews, Emily E Davis, Catherine J Mondloch
Nearly every study investigating the development of face recognition has focused on the ability to tell people apart using one or two tightly controlled images to represent each identity. Such research ignores the challenge of recognizing the same person despite variability in appearance. Whereas natural variation in appearance makes unfamiliar faces difficult to recognize, by 6 years of age people easily recognize multiple images of familiar faces. Two mechanisms are proposed to underlie the process by which adults become familiar with newly encountered faces...
December 5, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Yuto Kumaki, Yusuke Moriguchi, Masako Myowa-Yamakoshi
Previous studies have revealed that preschoolers selectively allocate their resources based on their social relationship with recipients such as friendship. In this investigation, we investigated how expectations about recipients' prosociality and the ability of future thinking relate to the selective allocation of resources. In Study 1, participants aged 3.5-6 years chose how to allocate resources from two ways (selfish allocation, where only the participants could receive stickers, and equal allocation, where the participants and recipients receive get the same number of stickers) in costly and non-costly situations with three recipients (friend, peer, and stranger)...
December 4, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
J Marc Goodrich, Christopher J Lonigan
The purpose of this study was to examine automatic language processing among Spanish-speaking language-minority children. A sample of 73 children (mean age = 90.4 months) completed two measures of semantic priming: an auditory lexical decision task and a looking-while-listening task. It was hypothesized that within- and cross-language semantic priming effects would occur but that translation priming effects would not occur. Results from vocabulary assessments indicated that language-minority children in this study were more proficient in English than they were in Spanish...
November 30, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Sergio Morra, Sabrina Panesi, Laura Traverso, M Carmen Usai
This article provides a selective review of the literature on executive function development and related topics, focusing on the conceptual and terminological confusions that might hinder communication among researchers in the field. The distinctions between working memory and updating, and between shifting and flexibility, are discussed. Methodological problems, which have implications regarding whether a certain task can be considered a measure of a psychological construct, are also discussed. Research on preschoolers is examined with particular attention because it is a rapidly growing but controversial field that seems in particular need of greater conceptual clarity...
November 30, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Oliver Kliegl, Lisa Wallner, Karl-Heinz T Bäuml
When, after study of an item list, adults are cued to forget some of the list items and encode new information instead, such cuing often induces selective forgetting of the to-be-forgotten material without impairing recall of the other items. This study examined developmental trends in such selective directed forgetting by having second graders, sixth graders, and young adults study three successive lists of items and, after study of List 2, cuing them either to remember both List 1 and List 2 or to forget List 2 but remember List 1...
November 29, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Fengling Ma, Gail D Heyman, Chunyan Jing, Ying Fu, Brian J Compton, Fen Xu, Kang Lee
The observational learning approach, developed more than a half century ago, suggests that it is possible to promote desirable social behaviors through peer observation. However, this idea has yet to be put to a rigorous empirical test. The current research sought to fill this gap by examining whether honesty can be promoted in children by allowing them to observe a peer's display of honest behavior. The dependent measure was whether 5-year-old children who had cheated by peeking in a guessing game would confess to it...
November 28, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Emma Flynn, Cameron Turner, Luc-Alain Giraldeau
This study investigated whether young children's conformity to a consensus varies across the normative domain and age. A total of 168 3- and 5-year-olds participated. Each child was presented with a puzzle box that had two transparent compartments. In a reward preference condition, one of the compartments contained 1 sticker, whereas the other compartment contained 12 stickers. In perceptual judgment and arbitrary preference conditions, one compartment contained a short plank, whereas one contained a perceptually longer plank...
November 27, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
A G M de Bruijn, E Hartman, D Kostons, C Visscher, R J Bosker
Physical fitness seems to be related to academic performance, at least when taking the role of executive functioning into account. This assumption is highly relevant for the vulnerable population of low academic achievers because their academic performance might benefit from enhanced physical fitness. The current study examined whether physical fitness and executive functioning are independent predictors of low mathematics and spelling achievement or whether the relation between physical fitness and low achievement is mediated by specific executive functions...
November 24, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Fabio Trecca, Dorthe Bleses, Thomas O Madsen, Morten H Christiansen
Previous research has shown that Danish-learning children lag behind in early lexical acquisition compared with children learning a number of other languages. This delay has been ascribed to the opaque phonetic structure of Danish, which appears to have fewer reliable segmentation cues than other closely related languages. In support of this hypothesis, recent work has shown that the phonetic properties of Danish negatively affect online language processing in young Danish children. In this study, we used eye-tracking to investigate whether the challenges associated with processing Danish also affect how Danish-learning children between 24 and 35 months of age establish and learn novel label-object mappings...
November 23, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Yingying Yang, Edward C Merrill
Objects in the environment have both location and identity properties. However, it is unclear how these independent properties are processed and combined in the implicit domain. The current study investigated the development of the implicit memory of object locations and object identities, both independently and combined, and the relation between implicit memory and working memory (WM) for these properties. Three age groups participated: 6- and 7-year-old children, 9- and 10-year-old children, and adults. Children and adults completed a repeated search paradigm...
November 22, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Sylvia B Guillory, Teodora Gliga, Zsuzsa Kaldy
Attentional control enables us to direct our limited resources to accomplish goals. The ability to flexibly allocate resources helps to prioritize information and inhibit irrelevant/distracting information. We examined developmental changes in visual working memory (VWM) fidelity in 4- to 7-year-old children and the effects that a distracting non-target object can exert in biasing their memory representations. First, we showed that VWM fidelity improves from early childhood to adulthood. Second, we found evidence of working memory load on recall variability in children and adults...
November 22, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Elisa Bisagno, Sergio Morra
This study examines young volleyball players' learning of increasingly complex attack gestures. The main purpose of the study was to examine the predictive role of a cognitive variable, working memory capacity (or "M capacity"), in the acquisition and development of motor skills in a structured sport. Pascual-Leone's theory of constructive operators (TCO) was used as a framework; it defines working memory capacity as the maximum number of schemes that can be simultaneously activated by attentional resources...
November 17, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Ruth Glynn, Karen Salmon, Jason Low
This experiment investigated whether retrieval-induced forgetting (RIF) would be found in children's self-generated autobiographical memory recall. An adapted version of the RIF paradigm for adults' autobiographical memories was administered to 8- and 9-year-old children (N = 65). We hypothesized that RIF would be found in terms of both number of memories recalled and amount of memory detail reported. The relationship between memory detail at the retrieval practice phase and RIF magnitude was also investigated...
November 17, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
Simone E Halliday, Susan D Calkins, Esther M Leerkes
Learning engagement is a critical factor for academic achievement and successful school transitioning. However, current methods of assessing learning engagement in young children are limited to teacher report or classroom observation, which may limit the types of research questions one could assess about this construct. The current study investigated the validity of a novel assessment designed to measure behavioral learning engagement among young children in a standardized laboratory setting and examined how learning engagement in the laboratory relates to future classroom adjustment...
November 16, 2017: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
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