Fifty-nine 6- to 9-year-old children evaluated three discipline strategies (reasoning, verbal power assertion, acknowledgment of feelings), and mothers were asked to predict their children's evaluations. Maternal knowledge scores were derived. Mothers were less accurate at predicting their children's perceptions of discipline when the misdeed in question involved failure to act prosocially than when it involved an antisocial act. As well, mothers' knowledge was positively correlated with maternal reports of authoritative parenting practices and negatively associated with both authoritarian and permissive practices. Mothers who used relatively more authoritarian practices overestimated the negative effect of power-assertive discipline, and mothers who were relatively more permissive overestimated the negative effect of discipline in general. Children evaluated acknowledgment of feelings most favorably, and verbal disapproval least favorably, with reasoning in between, and mothers were generally cognizant of these preferences.
Davidov, Maayan; Grusec, Joan E.; and Wolfe, Janis L.
"Mothers' Knowledge of Their Children's Evaluations of Discipline: The Role of Type of Discipline and Misdeed, and Parenting Practices,"
Merrill-Palmer Quarterly: Vol. 58
, Article 3.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/mpq/vol58/iss3/3