Helicopter parenting linked to academic and behavioural problems

(Rebecca Ochs/ European Scientist) — Helicopter parenting can prevent children from developing the ability to regulate their own emotions, which can lead to behavioural, social and academic problems later on, according to a new study. Researchers suggest parents should give their toddlers space to learn and manage their emotions on their own in order to excel.

The study was conducted by team of researchers from the United States and Switzerland and published by the American Psychological Association in the journal Developmental Psychology on Monday.

“Our research showed that children with helicopter parents may be less able to deal with the challenging demands of growing up, especially with navigating the complex school environment,” said lead author Dr Nicole Perry, from the University of Minnesota. “Children who cannot regulate their emotions and behaviour effectively are more likely to act out in the classroom, to have a harder time making friends and to struggle in school.”

Over the course of eight years, researchers assessed the behaviour of 422 children and their parents in the US and Switzerland. The children were evaluated at ages two, five and ten, with researchers collecting data from observations of parent-child interactions, teacher-reported responses and self-reports from the ten-year-olds. (…)

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