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Basically Annette here uses 3 concepts to study varying childhood in three social classes: the middle class, the working class and the poor household. She tried studying how the respective children were brought up in respective families based on their social status and financial status and checked how it affected the children and their lives and how was the involvement of parents from each home and what was the parents behavior towards the children. Lareau separated the middle class and poor/working class families into two parenting styles, "concerted cultivation" and "natural growth".
The middle class family used the concerted cultivation because the parents were focusing more on fostering the talents of their children by involving them in organized activities. Such as, encouraging them to ask questions, participate in discussion. . Lareau also noted that children from families who practiced concerted cultivation had developed a much stronger verbal acuity due to more exposure to language and communication at home. Superior verbal acuity enhances the personal skillset required later on when the child is applying to college or entering the work force. . Looking people in the eyes and feeling more comfortable with authority figures are also examples of valuable personal skills children from concerted cultivation families develop, which gives them another advantage later in life. These family interactions can also contribute to the child gaining a "sense of entitlement". Children from this environment tended to negotiate and talk back to their parents much more frequently than in working class families. Children from poor/working class family's predominately used the natural growth method.
This parenting style focuses on providing children's basic needs while allowing talents to develop naturally. These children experience fewer structured activities, more interaction with siblings, and more clear boundaries between adults and children. Children from working class families feel less entitled to adult attention, unlike middle class children, and therefore learn to be a lot more independent at an earlier age. The parents communicate through the use of directives with their children rather than reasoning. These parents also tend to have a more general uneasiness and distrust with authority figures, causing them to feel less comfortable when dealing with the child's school. Since education and other central institutions in society tend to have the middle class values of concerted cultivation, children from natural growth families tend to experience an "emergent sense of restraint in institutional settings". The contradiction the working class child experiences between varying interactions with people of authority in their home life and people of authority in society can create feelings of distrust and a sense of distance from these institutions, much like their parents, therefore perpetuating the cycle.
This is very important because it helps understand children and their behavior and attitudes towards life because they would have been trained according to their social class and would also be provided provisions accordingly. My perspective on childhood experience is fairly unique in that I lived in both working class and middle class environments growing up.