Chapter 10: How do friendships change from early to middle childhood?
1. The social needs children desire, seek out, and expect from friendships changes from early to middle
Early Childhood: 2-6 year olds Middle Childhood: 6-12 year olds
Social Needs: Social Needs:
- Someone to play with (playmate) - BFF – exclusivity, no competition
- Reciprocal trust
- Intimacy (psychological, not physical)
Parten’s (1932) Stages of Play
Parallel Play – - Transfer of internal working model
from parents to peers (Bowlby)
- No interaction
- Playing side by side
Associative Play –
- Brief interactions
- Not a joint activity (e.g. cannot draw
on same paper, but share crayons, etc)
Cooperative Play –
- Joint activity/task, collaboration group maintenance skills
- Group entry skills (getting in without
rejection), not to be bossy/aggressive
- Work together, give and take
2. There is a stronger preference for same-sex friendships in middle childhood relative to early childhood.
For instance, in middle childhood, friendship selection is based more on sex than any other
variable (i.e., age or race).
- Rules for acceptable interactions with opposite sex
3. Near the end of early childhood, sex differences emerge in the way that girls and boys interact in same-sex
friendships. However, these interactional differences are more pronounced in middle childhood. These
interactional differences appear to be strongly influenced by gender rules and roles.
When girls interact in same-sex friendships, an enabling style can be observed.
- Rules for acceptable interactions with same sex
- Enabling style – encourage/support/compliment each other; do not promote boasting,
- No open disagreement
When boys interact in same-sex friendships, a restricting or constricting style can be
- Directly confront/challenge/interrupt - Boast/brag/self-promotion
4. In middle childhood, physical aggression decreases but relational and retaliatory aggression increase.
Early Childhood Middle Childhood
- Physical aggression peaks around Retaliatory aggression: requires an understanding of intent.
2-3 years of age (80-90% goes Wanting to get back at the person.
- Delay of gratification Relational aggression: aggression intended to lower
someone’s self-esteem or peer/social status. (popularity)
relational bully. e.g. social exclusion
- Ostracism: intentional exclusion. For instance a b-day
party, invite people and exclude others to humiliate them.
- Defamation: to humiliate you…by