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Culture and Population Working Group Meeting

Natasha Cabrera (Dept of Human Development), “Disentangling the associations between Latino mothers’ and fathers’ socioeconomic and immigrant status and toddler’s cognitive and social skills”
When Oct 02, 2014
from 02:00 PM to 03:00 PM
Where 2101C Morrill Hall
Contact Name
Contact Phone 301-405-6392
Attendees Natasha Cabrera
Feinian Chen
Monica Das Gupta
Catherine Kuhns
Sangeetha Madhavan
Liana Sayer
Robert Turner
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Abstract

We examined how mothering and fathering behaviors mediated the association between parents’ resources (i.e. education and income) and immigrant status and their toddlers’ cognitive and social skills at 24 months. The study sample consisted of 500 toddlers of Latino heritage and their biological mothers and fathers who participated in the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Birth Cohort. Using structural equation modeling, our findings suggest that the pathways from parents’ resources and parents’ immigrant status to children’s cognitive and social skills are different for mothers and fathers and are domain-specific. Toddlers with higher cognitive scores lived with mothers who were native-born and in higher income households than toddlers with lower cognitive scores. These associations were not mediated through parenting behaviors, but they were for social skills. Toddlers living with higher educated mothers (some college) who were native born and in households with higher income had better social skills because their mothers were more responsive. Fathers’ education and immigrant status were not related to children’s outcomes or to parenting behaviors. These findings have implications for how to engage and support Latino mothers and fathers to promote children’s skills.

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