Coping with Children's Temperament: A Guide for Professionals

Coping with Children's Temperament: A Guide for Professionals

Coping with Children's Temperament: A Guide for Professionals

Coping with Children's Temperament: A Guide for Professionals


Why does one child and not another in a normal family develop a behavior problem? If a child is sensitive and likely to complain, how does that affect the quality and quantity of the medical care provided? What happens to the neurologically intact child who has trouble paying attention in school?Children's temperaments make a substantial contribution to their environments and their interactions with them. Certain of these largely inborn behavioral style differences, which are not abnormal in themselves, may lead to clinical problems by predisposing children to abrasive, incompatible relationships with caregivers. In this book, William B. Carey and Sean C. McDevitt present a clear, concise summary of the recent clinical research on temperament, in particular from the last ten years, coupled with practical suggestions on how to use this information in a variety of clinical and educational settings. These management strategies were assembled from their own extensive clinical experience and that of others. They take the professional- psychologist, physician, nurse, teacher, day care worker, and social worker- through all the stages of a child's life to show how the effects of temperament play out in infancy, the preschool years, middle childhood, and adolescence. Richly illustrated with detailed case examples, this outstanding book brings theory and practice to life and shows how all who work with children can improve their care by understanding these important differences.


Stella Chess and Alexander Thomas


In the past few decades, there has been a valuable expansion of information on the theory and practice of normal and deviant psychological development. Over these years, William B. Carey and Sean C. McDevitt have contributed important temperament studies to this process. Now they have written this unique book, a systematic and comprehensive guide that clarifies for health professionals and educators the dimensions of childrens temperaments and illuminates their significance for behavioral problems and other childhood dysfunctions. This book carries the authority of the authors' substantial research and clinical experience, their mastery of the voluminous professional literature, and their talents as educators and writers.

During the 1960s, Dr. Carey became acquainted with our exposition of a systematic temperamental categorical system and its theoretical and practical implications. He recognized that applications of this theory would enhance the effectiveness of clinical pediatric services. As he began to apply our system to the behavioral concerns of the parents of his patients, he quickly realized that a lengthy research tool could not be employed unchanged in a busy pediatric office. A man of action, he set himself to the task of building practical protocols for his own use and for others. In 1968 he devised a simplified infant temperament questionnaire that required only about 20 minutes for the parent to rate and about 10 minutes for the pediatrician or office assistant to score. He initially chose items by referring to our publications and consulting with our staff.

This first practical instrument filled a need for a growing group of researchers and clinicians, but it soon became clear that it needed to be made more psychometrically precise and that other questionnaires for other age groups would be helpful. In 1974 Dr. McDevitt and Dr. Carey . . .

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