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Teacher intervention and U.S. preschoolers' natural conflict resolution after aggressive competition

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The role of teacher intervention in preschoolers' peer conflicts is controversial, with one view suggesting that children should resolve conflicts on their own, and another that socialization accounts for conflict resolution's development. This study strives to clarify this issue using a short-term longitudinal, observational design to examine teacher intervention and 91 preschoolers aggressive competitive conflict. By delimiting the form of conflict, the study examines whether the role of teacher intervention varied by conflict behavior (e.g., physical and verbal aggression) and the form of conflict resolution. Results support the view that teacher intervention disrupts the conflict resolution cycle, especially in terms of preschoolers' on-going interaction and using alternatives to temporary separation. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology, and Special Education, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-0454, USA; 2: University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA; 3: University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA; Department of Counseling, Educational, and School Psychology at Wichita State University, 320 Hubbard Hall, Campus Box 123, 1845 N. Fairmount, Wichita, KS 67260-0123, USA; 4: University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA; School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University, 2120 Campus Drive Evanston, IL 60208, USA


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