Published: 2021-11-23

Parenting styles and social-emotional development of preschool children

Pooja A. Sukumaran, Bhavani B. Balakrishna


Background: A preschool aged child’s social emotional development can be influenced in many ways; one of which being the early style the parent uses to raise them. Identifying social emotional development in pre-schoolers by behaviours related, but not limited to: play, self-esteem, tantrums, interaction with people, disposition, transitions, are used to assess the child’s social emotional development. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between social emotional development of preschool children and parenting styles.

Methods: A non-experimental survey design was adopted for the study. 200 parents having preschool children were selected by purposive sampling technique. Data were collected using a 5-point rating scale for identifying the parenting style. A 3-point rating scale was used to assess the social emotional development of preschool children.

Results: Majority (88.5%) of the parents used authoritative parenting style, 8.5% used authoritarian parenting style and 3% used permissive parenting style. Majority of the children had near optimum social emotional development. The present study revealed that the correlation value between Social emotional development of preschool children and authoritative parenting style (r=0.286, p≤0.001) and authoritarian parenting style (r=0.452, p≤0.001) were highly significant at 0.001 level. There was no significant correlation between permissive parenting style and social emotional development of preschool children (r=0.052, p=0.461).

Conclusions: The overall finding of the study showed that parenting style influenced the social and emotional development of preschool children. In this study majority of children had near optimum social and emotional development.


Parenting style, Social-emotional development, Preschool children

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