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Article
March 24, 1956

THE PEDIATRICIAN EXAMINES THE MOTHER AND CHILDINTRODUCING A CHART TO RECORD GROWTH AND PERFORMANCE

JAMA. 1956;160(12):1033-1039. doi:10.1001/jama.1956.02960470029008
Abstract

• The reactions of children in test situations were found to be affected not only by the presence of the mother during the test but also by the personalities of the parents when neither was present. The performances of 363 children in a standard test situation were classified as showing more or less than average adaptability. The results showed great differences in individual children and parents.

The normally adaptable child enjoyed the tests. Others showed excessive caution, or great fear, or a bold aggressiveness calloused against direction. This was especially evident from the age of 10 months through the third birthday. The figures confirmed previous reports that a child is generally less adaptable if it is a first child, has nervous parents, has not been breast fed, and has his world expanded faster than he can developmentally handle.

Compartmentation, by using a playpen and other fenced-in areas to separate the child at regular times from the adult world, gave many nervous mothers relief, decreased the number of accidents, and tended to prevent the child's techniques of resistance to adults from becoming habitual. The use of compartmentation increased the adaptability of the school child more than twofold and that of the toddler nearly fourfold.

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