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Ecopsychological interactions of young children with other subjects of the social environment

Ecopsychological interactions of young children with other subjects of the social environment

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Recieved: 05/17/2022

Accepted: 06/04/2022

Published: 08/24/2022

Keywords: young children (1–3 years old); social environment; adults; children; toys; eco-psychological types of subject-environment interactions

p.: 108-118

DOI: 10.11621/npj.2022.0313

Available online: 24.08.2022

To cite this article:

Eleonora V. Lidskaya, Panov, Viktor I. . Ecopsychological interactions of young children with other subjects of the social environment. // National Psychological Journal 2022. 3. p.108-118. doi: 10.11621/npj.2022.0313

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Issue 3, 2022

Eleonora V. Lidskaya Psychological Institute Russian Academy of Education

Panov, Viktor I. Psychological Institute Russian Academy of Education


Background. Many studies carried out in the context of different approaches have been devoted to the social interactions of young children with the environment. Meanwhile, numerous questions remain unexplored from an ecopsychological point of view. These include how (and whether) the subjective structuring of the surrounding social environment occurs at this age and what types of communicative interactions are most characteristic of children of this age. 

Objective. Using the ecopsychological typology of subject-environment interactions, the work seeks to analyze social development of young children, to establish whether children of this age are capable of subjective structuring of social environment, as well as to identify on the example of communication and joint activities with other children and adults, what types of interactions are most characteristic of them. 

Methods. The study was carried out with a theoretical analysis of studies on social development of young children described in the works of L.N. Galiguzova (1983), M.S. Kiryushkina (2009), M.I. Lisina (1986), and E.O. Smirnova (2003). The ecopsychological typology of subject-environment interactions was applied as a theoretical construct. 

Results. Social environment is subjectively not homogeneous for young children, being structured and hierarchized by them. A third of children at this age pay no attention to their peers, revealing an object-object relation to them. Some children treat peers as things, demonstrating the subject-object type of interaction. Approximately a third of children observe their peers but do not come into contact with them, which indicates a subject-object attitude towards them. To overcome the fear of peers and evoke the need to interact with them, as well as to establish their interaction with each other, children need the help of an adult in organizing joint actions. These actions require the implementation of subject-joint or subject-generating types of interaction. With the appearance of an adult, the child first tries to attract attention to himself —subject-object and object-subject types of interaction; then he tries to include the adult in a joint action — the subject-generating and the subject-joint types of interaction. 

Conclusion. The presence of an adult is of the greatest importance in forming and satisfying the need for communicative interaction in children of this age. It is followed by toys and, finally, by the presence of another child. As the child’s need develops, the types of interactions with subjects of social environment change in the direction from the object-object and subject-object types towards the subject-generating and subject-joint ones. The adult’s assistance in shaping the child’s need for communication and joint actions is a necessary condition for such dynamics in types of interaction.


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To cite this article:

Eleonora V. Lidskaya, Panov, Viktor I. . Ecopsychological interactions of young children with other subjects of the social environment. // National Psychological Journal 2022. 3. p.108-118. doi: 10.11621/npj.2022.0313

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