Educational styles: ineffective parenting beliefs and behaviors

Since the 1960s, Diana Baumrind has proposed her classification on the different teaching styles To date, various research has focused on reviewing and updating the knowledge available in this area of ​​psychology.

Most of the different theoretical models proposed have been assessed as determining factors in distinguishing between varying educational styles such as: level of control, power exercised, degree of affection, level of maturity requested, support and attention expressed or the type of communication between parents. and children.

Initially, the classification proposed by Baumrind (1966) distinguished three classes of educational styles: authoritarian, permissive and democratic. McCoby and Martin (1983) subsequently combined the factors of control and affective involvement in their research to form four categories: reciprocal, repressive, forgiving, and neglectful. In the 90s, other authors like López Franco (1998) or Torres i cols. (1994) have developed models which essentially retain many elements of previous theories.

    The family as the main agent of socialization

    On the other hand, there is no doubt that the family is the main agent of socialization of the child during the first years of life.

    Thus, parental figures exert a huge influence on children in the transmit to them both all beliefs and moral values, as well as the behaviors and actions that they consider most appropriate for the development of the maturation of their offspring.

      The PEE proposal: educational styles and associated psychological effects

      Studies conclude that there are significant differences in the psychological configuration and personal development of the child depending on the educational style and the socialization strategies that parents tend to apply with their children at the educational level.

      Specifically, Magaz and Pérez developed a useful psychometric test in 2011 to assess the educational style of parents. the PEE (Profile of Educational Styles), which reflects some examples of parental beliefs and behaviors related to four types of profiles: overprotective, inhibitory, punitive and assertive.

      These are some of the approaches that are ineffective and / or harmful, given the emotional and behavioral consequences that effectively shape children’s personalities.

        1. Overprotective educational style

        • “Life is very hard now and as long as I can make it easier until I get older, I have to do it so that I can enjoy it to the fullest.”
        • “She’s still too young to …”

        According to the authors, this type of belief corresponds to a so-called overprotective parenting style, because is based on values ​​of hyper-responsibility and strong guilt on the part of parents in the face of potential adversity that the child may suffer. This inhibits the possibility for them to learn to use themselves independently and to take active responsibility for their own behavior.

        This excessive preoccupation and parental nervousness can lead the child to take initiative and develop a low level of self-concept, because he has not had the opportunity to practice self-care or interaction skills. social, as well as can generate a high level of personal insecurity.

          2. Inhibitory educational style

          • “If I solve his problems, he’ll never learn to handle them on his own.”

          This kind of idea is typical of an inhibitionist upbringing., since the pole is completely opposite to the previous one, there is a high excuse, and the level of responsibility on the part of the parents is almost zero. This type of parent feels annoyed or nervous when the child asks for help and is calm only when the child acts independently and autonomously, because he tends to confuse the notion of help with that of dependence. . On the other hand, this type of parent usually pays very little attention or recognition to the child’s properly “normalized” behavior while randomly punishing him for inappropriate behavior without consistent or consistent judgment.

          The consequences of practicing this kind of parenthood can be negative for the offspring, prompting the continued search for support for other authority figures, as well as the tendency to develop a general disinterest and negligence in the handling of matters concerning him. Social skills deficits can also be observed, especially in the ability to empathize with others.

          3. Punitive educational style

          • “My son has to learn to behave properly.”

          This style corresponds to a punitive education, which is based on values ​​such as demand, intolerance of alternative viewpoints and incomprehension. Parental reactions are often explosive when the child disobeys instructions and does not recognize appropriate “normative” behaviors.

          On the other hand, these types of parents behave critically and they tend to focus on their children’s mistakes or imperfections, exclusively promoting excellent titles. Thus, they issue frequent and disproportionate random punishments and previous threats. They also often attribute the qualities of the specific behavior to the person, so that they stigmatize and generalize the negative characteristics of the little ones.

          The effect of this educational dynamic on the child is the development of a high level of disgrace and normalization of criticism, high levels of anxiety and personal insecurity, while a negative level of self-image may appear. A sense of resentment towards the educator is normalized and decision making tends to be based on criteria of failure or punishment rather than success.

            4. The assertive educational style

            • “It is important that you learn to behave appropriately and that you develop personal habits and skills. “
            • “He will learn little by little as he trains and makes his own mistakes.”
            • “It is reasonable that their tastes, wants and needs may differ from those of those around them.”

            These approaches are typical of an assertive educational style. In this case, parenthood is based on values ​​such as patience, tolerance, understanding and responsibility balanced with freedom.

            Thus, parents understand that mistakes and inappropriate behaviors are understood as natural in the process of personal learning and maturation, although in contrast they apply consequences to these behaviors in order to promote the value of the responsibility of the child. child./a.

            On the other hand, attention is paid to progress and appropriate accomplishments or behaviors are recognized as positive, and the expression of one’s own tastes and opinions is also valued.

            Unlike the previous one, parents generally do not attribute behavioral qualities to the person, so they do not generalize or label the child negatively.

            This style leads to the development of healthier consequences in the child derived from the recognition and positive reinforcement obtained by his parents. This leads to a higher level of consolidation of learning on a personal and social level, as well as the promotion of a favorable level of self-image, greater personal security and a more positive degree. motivation to achieve individual goals.

            On another side, boys and girls raised in this way often learn to tolerate criticism appropriately and base active decision-making on more rational issues, such as the consequences they may have.

            Bibliographical references

            • Magaz Llac, A., and García Pérez, I. Manuel. Profile of educational styles, PEE. ALBOR-COHS Group, Madrid 2011.
            • Torío López, S., Penya Calvo, JV and Rodríguez Menéndez, MDC (2008). Parental education styles: bibliographic review and theoretical reformulation.

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