Children's Voices About the Functions of Their Social Supports: Multicountry Perspectives
Originally Published In
International Journal of School & Educational Psychology
Research points to the importance of sociocultural and developmental experiences in understanding children's social supports. The present study examines qualitative themes about children's social supports, derived from a multicountry study of 604 school-aged children (ages 4–19 years). Using the ecomap (a child-generated paper-and-pencil drawing depicting relevant stressors and supports), children could describe social stressors and supports in a culturally and developmentally adaptable manner. Participants described 51 support themes reflecting achievement of competencies, degree of autonomy, leisure and recreation activities, and most prominently, interpersonal relationships and interactions. Findings revealed cross-site, cross-gender, and cross-age patterns, and cultural and developmental variations.