Temperament works in combination with a child's environment to influence early socioemotional development. We examined whether maternal caregiving behavior at infant age 9months moderated the relation between infant temperamental fear (9months) and observations of children's social behavior with an unfamiliar peer at age 2 in a typically developing sample of 155 children. When infants received lower quality maternal caregiving, temperamental fear was inversely related to observed social engagement and aggression. These relations were nonsignificant when infants received higher quality maternal caregiving. Findings indicate that variations in temperamental fear may predict individual differences in future peer interactions, but sensitive, nonintrusive caregiving behaviors can attenuate these associations.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Developmental and Educational Psychology