This study explored early childhood manifestations of self-control in a nationally representative cohort of kindergarten children. Finite mixture modeling was used to identify five latent classes of children based on parent and teacher reports of self control across three waves of data. These were a low impairment, teacher report (n = 5,047, 29.3%), low impairment, parent and teacher report (n = 2,889, 16.8%), moderate impairment, teacher report (n = 5,267, 30.6%), moderate impairment, parent report (n = 2,415, 14.0%), and severely impaired subgroups (n = 1,594, 9.3%). Parental stress, externalizing behaviors, and interpersonal skills deficits were important differentiators across class memberships. The severely impaired subgroup possessed an array of neurocognitive deficits, behavioral problems, and learning difficulties relative to other classes. To forestall life-course problem behaviors for impaired children appropriate screening and intervention is warranted.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health(social science)
- Developmental and Educational Psychology