This study examined associations among maternal book-sharing styles and goals for book-sharing activities and children's verbal contributions in three communities. Participants were 106 mother-toddler dyads from New York City (NYC, USA), Münster (Germany), and Chennai (India). Mothers were videotaped sharing a book with their two-year-olds and interviewed about their book-sharing goals. Cluster analyses identified two book-sharing styles: 53% adopted a follower style (focused on maintaining the flow of the conversation, while requesting and providing some information), and 47% of mothers adopted a storyteller-follower style (focused on providing information about the text and maintaining the flow of the conversation). NYC mothers were more likely to adopt a follower style compared to Münster and Chennai mothers. While NYC mothers embraced the goal of enjoyment and bonding more, Chennai mothers embraced the goal of learning from books more, and Münster mothers embraced the goal of soothing the child more. Maternal book-sharing styles and goals were associated. Embracing the goal of enjoyment and bonding was related to adopting a follower style, above community and demographic variables. Maternal book-sharing styles were not related to children's verbal contributions. Findings highlight variation within and across communities in how mothers approach booksharing with their toddlers.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science