Project Details

Children’s stress, appraisal, coping and adults’ scaffolding during transition to school.

This study involves collaboration between Dr. Amanda Wong (Education University of Hong Kong) and Professor Thomas Power (Washington State University). First, this study explores factors that may affect children’s coping strategies during the transition to school, including types of stress situations, evaluation of problem seriousness, and emotion attribution. Second, this study examines the relation between children’s coping strategies and adjustment. Third, the association between teachers’ and parents’ strategies in helping children to cope with stress and children’s coping and adjustment are explored. 100 children and their parents and teachers were involved in the study. Children were interviewed during the third months at Year 1. Children’s responses to a set of hypothetical stress situations during transition to school were elicited using enactive assessment (Mize & Ladd, 1988; Green, Cillessen, Rechis et al., 2008). Hypothetical stress situations during the transition to schools include: 1) reduced playing time, increased learning activities at home;2) nervousness about authority; and 3) bullying. Children’s depressive symptoms during the transition to school were measured using the Chinese version of the Center for Epidemiological Studies-Depression Child (Li et al, 2010). Teacher and parental strategies in helping children to cope with stress at school were measured by asking parents and teachers to complete a questionnaire. The results of the study will add to the existing knowledge and provide direct practice implication by generating robust data on children’s coping difficulties and strategies during transition to primary school, and the cultural context of transition, coping and parenting in the Chinese society. The preliminary result of this study was presented at the Conference for Research in Early Childhood Education – Social, Emotional, and Moral Development of Young Children, The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong (2017, May). Details of research outputs: (1)Wong, M. & Power, G.T. (2019) Links Between Coping Strategies and Depressive Symptoms Among Girls and Boys During the Transition to Primary School, Early Education and Development, 30(2), 178-195, DOI: 10.1080/10409289.2018.1544811. (2) Wong, M., & Power, G.T. (2019). Childhood Depressive Symptoms during the Transition to Primary School in Hong Kong: Comparison of Child and Maternal Reports. Children and Youth Services Review 100, 183-190,

Commencement Date : 2015/9
Completion Date : 2016/8
Chief Investigator(s) : Dr WONG, Mun Amanda 黃敏 [ECE]
Co-Investigator(s) : Professor Thomas, G. Power *
Keyword(s) : stress and coping   transition to school  

*Investigator from an outside institution/organization

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