How Adults’ Actions, Outcomes, and Testimony Affect Preschoolers’ Persistence

TitleHow Adults’ Actions, Outcomes, and Testimony Affect Preschoolers’ Persistence
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsLeonard, JA, Garcia, A, Schulz, LE
JournalChild Development
Date PublishedSep-09-2019
ISSN0009-3920
Abstract

Across four experiments, we looked at how 4‐ and 5‐year‐olds' (n = 520) task persistence was affected by observations of adult actions (high or low effort), outcomes (success or failure), and testimony (setting expectations—“This will be hard,” pep talks—“You can do this,” value statements—“Trying hard is important,” and baseline). Across experiments, outcomes had the biggest impact: preschoolers consistently tried harder after seeing the adult succeed than fail. Additionally, adult effort affected children’s persistence, but only when the adult succeeded. Finally, children’s persistence was highest when the adult both succeeded and practiced what she preached: exerting effort while testifying to its value.

URLhttps://srcd.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/cdev.13305
DOI10.1111/cdev.13305
Short TitleChild Dev

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