The Qualities of Teacher–Child Relationships and Self-Regulation of Children at Risk in the United States and Turkey: The Moderating Role of Gender

Document Type


Publication Date



The current study is an examination of the teacher–child relationships (closeness and conflict) as a predictor of children’s self-regulation in preschool, with a focus on child gender as moderator of associations between teacher–child relationships and children’s self-regulation. Participants were 291 low-income children (159 males; 37–70 months old) in the United States and 362 low-income children (165 males; 42–79 months) in Turkey, and their teachers. Teacher–child relationship was assessed via teacher-report and children’s self-regulation was assessed by independent researchers via structured tasks. Gender moderated the association between teacher–child conflict and self-regulation in children from the U.S. such that boys with lower levels of teacher–child conflict scored higher in self-regulation than boys who had higher levels of conflict with their teachers. Teacher–child conflict in the U.S. and teacher–child closeness in Turkey were significantly associated with children’s self-regulation. Limitations of the current study and future directions are also discussed.

Publication Title

Early Childhood Education Journal

DOI of Published Version



Springer Netherlands