East Meeting West: Raising Globally Competent Children Are Tiger Moms the Answer and Solution? Chun Zhang, Ph.D. Visiting Fulbright Scholar University of Macau January 31, 2013 What is this Lecture or Conversation about? Reflecting on my journey as a scholar Sharing research and personal experiences Lessons learned from research and experiences Reflecting on my parenting as a mother: triumphs and struggles in a multicultural context Having a conversation about parenting hopes, ideals, tips, mistakes, and regrets Ideal Goals for Parenting and Education As parents and educators, we need to help the younger generation to release their energy in positive ways and reach their fullest potential Examples of Asian Americans Vera Wang Jeremy Lin Steve Chen Gary Locke Steven Chu Global Competence Have a diverse and knowledgeable worldview (cognitive) Comprehends international dimensions of his/her major field of study (cognitive) Communicates effectively in another language and/or cross-culturally (cognitive and emotional) Exhibits cross-cultural sensitivity and adaptability (social and emotional) Carries global competencies throughout life (social and emotional) Russo & Osborne cited on January 18, 2013 from http://www.aplu.org/NetCommunity/Document.Doc?id=41 Cultural or Multicultural Competence: Four Components Awareness of one's own cultural worldview Attitude towards cultural differences Knowledge of different cultural practices and worldviews, and Developing an ability to understand, communicate with, and effectively interact with people across cultures. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_competence Well-Rounded Child Development--Cognitive and Social/Emotional Development: What Does Research Say? Kindergarteners with positive social-emotional competence demonstrate not only more positive attitudes toward school and smoother adjustment to school life, but also better academic performance (Ladd, Birch, & Buhs, 1999). Children with appropriate and effective social-emotional competence are able to negotiate in complex social contexts and are effective in achieving personal goals (Brown, & Conroy, 2011). Sub-domains of social and emotional competences, such as positive relationship with others, positive self-representation, self-image or esteem, emotion knowledge, social abilities, and emotional regulation, are often unique predictors of academic success (Carlton, 1999) Goals of Parenting and Parent-Child Interactions Goals of Parenting Framework for Creating Positive ParentChild Interactions L. Kuczynski (2003, ed.). Handbook of dynamics in parent-child relations (pages. 172 &173) Parenting Styles and Child Outcomes: What Do Major Theories and Research Say? Two dimensions of parenting styles parental acceptance/responsiveness and Demandingness/control (Grolnick, 2003) Parenting Styles and Child Outcomes: What Do Major Theories and Research Say? Parenting style has often been defined as a construct that reflects relationship qualities such as emotional tone or affect between parent and child (Chao, 2001) Four main parenting styles (a)authoritative (warm, responsive/restrictive, demanding), (b)permissive (warm, responsive/permissive, undemanding), (c)authoritarian (rejecting, unresponsive/restrictive, demanding), and (d) uninvolved (rejecting, unresponsive/permissive, undemanding). (Grolnick, 2003) Parenting Styles and Child Outcomes: What Do Major Theories and Research Say? Parenting styles and children functioning demonstrate bidirectional relations. Inflexible parents tend to raise inflexible children, whereas flexible adolescents reinforce flexible parenting styles. (Williams, Ciarrochi, & Heaven, 2012) Parenting Styles and Child Outcomes Authoritative parenting is associated with higher school performance among EuropeanAmerican adolescents than are other parenting styles. Authoritarian parenting is negatively associated with children’s school achievement in both the United States and Taiwan and among European-Americans and Asian-Americans alike. (Pong, Johnston, & Chen, 2010) Parenting Styles and Child Outcomes Positive effects of both authoritative parenting and relationship closeness on school performance were found for European Americans and, to some extent, secondgeneration Chinese, but not first-generation Chinese. Among European American families, the beneficial effects of authoritative parenting are explained through relationship closeness. (Chao, 2001) Parenting Styles and Child Outcomes Relationship qualities of closeness between parent and child affect the school performance of European Americans. Authoritative parents may be more effective simply because they foster close and mutually satisfying relationships with their children. Because the effects of relationship closeness may not be as positive for some groups as others, particularly for more recent generations of Asian immigrants compared with European Americans, authoritative parenting may also have less beneficial consequences for Asian immigrants than for European Americans’ satisfying relationships with their children. (Chao, 2001) Parenting Styles within the Contexts of East and West Beliefs and Values Family is a social-cultural-economic arrangement that influences children’s social and emotional development to a great degree (Alizadeh, Talib, Abdullah, & Mansor, 2011). Traditional Western philosophy believes in problem solving through active and direct manipulation or control to change the environment. Western culture emphasizes defining and attacking the problems directly. Confucian philosophy stresses rules to promote loyalty, respect, and harmony among family members (Moodley & West, 2005). Asian cultures tend to accommodate or cope with problems indirectly (Sue & Sue, 2008). Parenting Styles within the Contexts of East and West Beliefs and Values In terms of the relational dimension, the U.S. culture is characterized as an achievement-driven society and the concept of individualism is emphasized. It is believed that the individual is the psychosocial unit of operation; the individual holds accountability for his/her own behaviors; independence and autonomy are highly valued; and one should be internally directed and controlled. Relationship in Asian cultures is lineal in nature. Collectivism is stressed in many Asian cultures. Obeying the wishes of ancestors or decreased parents and using identity in relation to the family and historical past are common practice in Asian cultures. However, such behaviors might be misinterpreted as not being able to establish independent identity and not holding accountability on one’s own behaviors. (Sue & Sue, 2008) Acculturation: Embracing or Rejecting Other Cultures? Berry’s acculturation framework (1997, 2003) Based on Berry, two dimensions of acculturation are (a) immigrants’ maintenance of one’s heritage culture, and (b) immigrants’ adoption of mainstream culture. By joint consideration of both dimensions, there are four levels of acculturation: integration (embrace both heritage culture and mainstream culture), marginalization (embrace neither culture), separation (exclusively embrace heritage culture), and assimilation (exclusively embrace mainstream culture). Acculturation and Child Outcomes Adolescents with integration mode reported the least emotional and behavioral problems, whereas those with marginalization mode reported the most problems (Shrake, 1996). Tiger Mothers: Responses about Amy Chua’s Book Stereotypes of Asian Children and Parents in the U.S. Children: The Model Minority Asian students are math whizzes and music prodigies Parents Chinese parents raise stereotypically successful kids Academic achievement reflects successful parenting (Chua, 2011, p.3) Tiger Mothers: Responses about Amy Chua’s Book Sophia got the best of both cultures. She was probing and questing, from the Jewish side. From me, the Chinese side, she got skills, skills learned in a diligent, disciplined, and confidence-expanding Chinese way (Chua, 2011, p8) I have decided the hybrid approach, the best of both worlds. The Chinese way until the child is 18, to develop confidence and the value of excellence (Chua, 2011, p 225-226) Parenting Lessons from Amy Chua Western parents try to respect their children’s individuality, encouraging them to pursue their true passions and providing a nurturing environment. The Chinese believe that the best way to protect their children is by preparing them for the future and arming them with skills, strong work habits, and inner confidence. Amy demands as much of herself as she does of her daughters, and in her sacrifices—the enormous commitment of time and energy, the heartbreak and pain she is willing to endure—the depth of love for her children. Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother exposes the clash of eastern and western parental worldviews, but is ultimately the story of a mother’s hopes for her daughters and the risks she is willing to take to invest in their future. (Chua, 2011, cover explanation) Lessons for Our Parenting: Nurturing Our Children’s Cognitive and Emotional Intelligences My Observation: We tend to value and overemphasize cognitive intelligence over emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence promotes greater social skills and leadership skills. Five essential elements of emotional intelligence that are linked with leader effectiveness: development of collective goals and objectives; instilling in others an appreciation of the importance of work activities; generating and maintaining enthusiasm, confidence, optimism, cooperation, and trust; encouraging flexibility in decision making and change; and establishing, and maintaining a meaningful identity for an organization. (George, 2000) Conditional Love or Unconditional Love: My Own Reflection and Confession My Observation: We tend to love our children conditionally, and expect something in return; it is almost like an expectation of return on investment. We love our children for family pride or for our own sake. Many western parents love children for their children’s sake, and give unconditional love. Unconditional Love Empathizing: listening with your own heart to another’s heart. Sharing authentically your most deeply felt insights, learnings, emotions, and convictions. Affirming the other person with a profound sense of belief, valuation, confirmation, appreciation, and encouragement. Praying with and for the other person from the depths of your soul, tapping into the energy and wisdom of higher powers. Sacrificing for the other person: going the second mile, doing far more than is expected, caring and serving until it sometimes even hurts. My Thoughts and Reflection: Parenting Lessons, Hopes, Ideals, Mistakes, and Regrets Stages of parenting, child development, and learning/teaching A close, warm, and supportive family relationship is the foundation for developing independence and interdependence Positive, supportive, and loving parenting is a life-long learning process that can result in an immense sense of accomplishment and happiness. This type of relationship building can be transferred to other relationship development. The good news is that most of the family’s strained relationships (husband and wife, parent and child) can be repaired. It is never too late to repair a strained family relationship. admit mistakes, forgive yourself , your spouse, and your children, take others’ perspectives, spend quality time together, give unconditional support and love Lessons Learned from research and experiences Overprotection may interfere with independence and risk taking skills development Too many parents try to use material compensation to relieve their sense of guilt because of being too busy—the best remedy is to try to have quality time together with them when possible. Too much love or intensive mothering may result in strained and distant relationship between children and parents; there needs to be the right balance. Intellectual intelligence and emotional intelligence Skill-based development and inquisitiveness and creativity development Individual and group skills development Closeness, warmness, and unconditional support and love establish the foundation for trust, security, and bonding. Understanding, being sensitive, and showing respect for our children, others, and other cultures My Confession and Conclusion As an observer, caregiver, friend, and mentor, being a mother is a process of learning about myself, finding out about how my child develops as an individual, and what she loves and loves to do for herself and others, and guiding and supporting her unconditionally, so that she will become a happy, competent, and compassionate individual and professional. Thank You Very Much for Your Attendance!