Drawing by Aveya Peplak

Moral Pride Across Cultures

Moral pride is the warm glow you feel after helping, sharing, or including someone, and it contributes to character and virtue development. In this project, alongside cross-cultural collaborators, we study children's feelings of moral pride across contexts, how moral pride is socialized by parents, and how this emotion may contribute to children's prosocial repertoires. 

Socialization Through Parent-Child Conversations

Children's moral development is propelled, in part, by conversations with their parents and peers. We aim to identify the mechanisms (e.g., message content, linguistic features, behavioral synchrony) within conversations that socialize children's moral-emotional capacities. Most recently, we have explored how parent-adolescent conversations during the pandemic shaped adolescents' COVID-19 health behaviors. 

Revenge, Retaliation, and Aggression

Although aggression is normative in very young children (due to their developing regulatory and social-emotional skills), if children continue to engage in aggression into adolescence and adulthood, this could have negative consequences for their mental health and for the health of those around them. Across multiple projects, we examine the cognitive and emotional facets of social-conflict situations that drive children to retaliate/seek revenge. We also explore the various factors at the community-, family-, and child-level that prompt children's aggressive behaviors (both physical and relational) with the goal of developing strategies to limit aggressive acts.  

Emotional Development in the Digitial Age

Children learn from their environment, and what they are exposured to laregely influences how they behave. In this suite of projects, we will investigate how children's moral emotions, such as empathy, develop alongside their interactions with screens and social media. We are not only interested in the content of media exposure, but also the form of technology through which they interact with others (e.g., text, video). 

Kindness Across Group Lines

Communities in the GVA and across the globe are diversifying. As such, the success of diverse communities relies upon equitable and kind interactions amongst its members. We aim to understand how diversity may enrich children's moral development, and how children exercise empathy and care within diverse social interactions. 

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