Volume 43, Issue 1 (2014)
Students' Perceptions of Relatedness in the Classroom: The Roles of Emotionally Supportive Teacher–Child Interactions, Children's Aggressive–Disruptive Behaviors, and Peer Social Preference
Rebecca A. Madill, Scott D. Gest, & Philip C. Rodkin
Abstract. This study examines the roles of emotionally supportive teacher–child interactions and child characteristics (aggressive–disruptive behavior and low peer social preference) in first-, third, and fifth-grade children's perceptions of teacher closeness and sense of peer community. Results from a series of multilevel models suggest that emotionally supportive teacher–child interactions are associated with children's perceptions of closeness with their teachers (for boys and girls), as well as a greater sense of peer community (for boys only). Aggressive–disruptive children and boys tended to perceive less-close relationships with their teachers. Results indicate that classroom-level factors, particularly the supportive qualities of teachers' interactions with students, are associated with children's perceived closeness with teachers and sense of peer community, above and beyond the influence of children's individual characteristics.
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