Test of a cultural framework of parenting with Latino families of young children

Esther J. Calzada, Keng Yen Huang, Catherine Anicama, Yenny Fernandez, Laurie Miller Brotman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined the mental health and academic functioning of 442 4and 5-year old children of Mexican (MA) and Dominican (DA) immigrant mothers using a cultural framework of Latino parenting. Data were collected on mothers' self-reported acculturative status, parenting practices and cultural socialization, and on children's behavioral functioning (motherand teacher-report) and school readiness (child test). Results provide partial support for the validity of the framework in which mothers' acculturative status and socialization of respeto (a Latino cultural value of respect) and independence (a U.S. American cultural value) predict parenting practices. For both groups, English language competence was related to less socialization of respeto, and other domains of acculturative status (i.e., U.S. American/ethnic identity, and U.S. American/ethnic cultural competence) were related to more socialization of respeto and independence. Socialization of respeto was related to the use of authoritarian practices and socialization of independence was related to the use of authoritative practices. Socialization of respeto was also related to lower school readiness for DA children, whereas socialization of independence was related to higher school readiness for MA children. Independence was also related to higher teacher-rated externalizing problems for MA children. For both groups, authoritarian parenting was associated with more parent-reported internalizing and externalizing problems. The discussion focuses on ethnic subgroup differences and similarities to further understanding of Latino parenting from a cultural perspective.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)285-296
Number of pages12
JournalCultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2012


  • Dominican families
  • Early childhood
  • Ethnic socialization
  • Mexican families
  • Parenting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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