Elaine Reese

Elaine Reese
University of Otago · Department of Psychology

Emory University, PhD

About

166
Publications
91,666
Reads
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8,077
Citations
Additional affiliations
February 2008 - present
University of Auckland
Position
  • Growing Up in New Zealand
August 2001 - December 2004
Clark University
Position
  • Preschool Language Project
December 1993 - present
The University of Otago
Position
  • Origins of Memory
Education
August 1988 - May 1993
Emory University
Field of study
  • Developmental Psychology

Publications

Publications (166)
Article
Full-text available
The life story is a special cognitive-communicative format which allows understanding persons from a biographical perspective through autobiographical reasoning and life narrating. Reviewing research on the development of the life story from the past 15 years, we clarify the conceptual and developmental specificity of the life story by comparing it...
Article
The present research explores the role of family structure and maternal reminiscing in childhood amnesia in middle childhood (age 7–11 years). Children from non-nuclear (solo parent, blended, extended; n = 13) or nuclear families (two biological parents; n = 13) were interviewed about their two earliest memories; they also reminisced with their mot...
Article
This longitudinal intervention assessed children's memory at 2(1/2) years (short-term posttest; N=115) and their memory and narrative at 3(1/2) years (long-term posttest; N=100) as a function of maternal training in elaborative reminiscing when children were 1(1/2) to 2(1/2) years. At both posttests, trained mothers were more elaborative in their r...
Article
The purpose of this paper is to synthesize research on picture book reading with young children (i.e., children under the age of 3). In this paper, we review cross-sectional, longitudinal, and intervention reading research and describe changes in both parental and children’s behaviors during picture book reading from birth to age 3. Research relate...
Article
This study investigated long-term consistency and change in maternal style for talk about the past and relationships of those styles with children's memory participation. Nineteen white, middle-class mother-child dyads talked about shared past events at four time points: when children were 40, 46, 58, and 70 months of age. Across the four time poin...
Article
Full-text available
Tender Shoots is a randomized controlled trial (RCT) for parents aimed at improving preschool children's oral language skills relevant for later reading. Parents of 72 preschool children (M = 50 months) were randomly assigned to either a Rich Reading and Reminiscing (RRR) condition, a Strengthening Sound Sensitivity (SSS) condition, or an Activity-...
Article
Full-text available
Parent–child interactive shared reading can benefit young children’s language and emergent literacy skills; however, studies of programs to enhance shared reading often do not evaluate lasting effects after the transition to primary school. In this randomized control study, 69 parents of 3.5–4.5-year-old children participated in one of three condit...
Article
The current study is an emerging adult follow-up of a longitudinal intervention study of maternal reminiscing (Growing Memories; N = 115). Mothers in the intervention condition were taught elaborative reminiscing skills when their children were 1.5–2.5 years old. We tested long-term effects of the intervention for emerging adults’ turning-point nar...
Preprint
Full-text available
We assessed the rate of abstract talk of parents and their children across two days of naturally occurring speech. We hypothesized that 1) parents would use more abstract talk than children, and 2) parents’ abstract talk would predict children’s abstract talk at one-year follow-up. Thirty-five two-parent families with preschoolers wore a recorder f...
Article
Introduction: Parental elaborative reminiscing supports young children's autobiographical memory, narrative, and socioemotional skills. Objective: This study is an adolescent follow-up of a reminiscing intervention in which 115 primary-caregiver mothers of toddlers were randomly assigned to a control group (n = 59) or to receive training in elab...
Article
Full-text available
As screens become even more embedded in the everyday lives of young children, understanding the predictors of screen time becomes increasingly important. Our study investigated the predictors of total screen time on a weekday for children at two years of age using data from the Growing Up in New Zealand longitudinal (GUiNZ) study. Our selection of...
Article
Tender Shoots compared two book-reading and conversation approaches for parents and preschoolers to an activity-based control group. The Rich Reading and Reminiscing (RRR) condition taught parents to converse about the storyline; the Strengthening Sound Sensitivity (SSS) condition taught parents to converse about word sounds. A total of 69 families...
Article
Our aims were to (a) examine whether emerging adults on the schizophrenia spectrum (schizotypy) differed from non-spectrum peers in social, emotional, and academic adjustment to university; and (b) determine the role of the basic and narrative selves in adjustment. Schizotypy (n = 30) and non-schizotypy comparison (n = 29) participants, who were se...
Article
Full-text available
The original version of this article unfortunately contained mistakes. The likelihood ratios for the regression tables were incorrect and a rounding error had been applied to the p values, which we have corrected in the revised tables.
Article
Cultural differences in autobiographical memories are linked to differences in self-understanding and well-being. This study investigated how vicarious memories of family events, expressed in intergenerational narratives, are also important for well-being. New Zealand adolescents (N = 263) from three cultural groups (Chinese, Ma ̄ori, and European;...
Article
The fusion of personal and group identities can lead to self-sacrificial progroup behavior, from acts of charity to violent extremism. Two pathways to identity fusion—via shared biology and shared experiences—have been proposed. In this article, we elucidate a new developmental account of the origins and mechanisms of these two pathways to identity...
Article
The relationships between screen media use and hot and cool executive functioning (EF) and inattention/hyperactivity during the preschool years were assessed using data from mothers, fathers and children (N = 3787) participating in the Growing Up in New Zealand study. Patterns of screen time (i.e., whether children exceeded 2 hr of screen time at 2...
Article
Full-text available
Although there is a growing body of literature examining the positive aspects of being a parent, very few studies have considered the highlights mothers experience in parenting their infants. In particular, neither mothers’ own perceptions of the highlights of parenting infants nor the factors that increase the odds of mothers experiencing these hi...
Article
In the current study, we examined whether vicarious family stories are linked to family climate and well-being among young, middle-aged, and older adults across two different samples. In total, there were 168 triads of Turkish families (N = 504). Across Sample 1 (written narratives) and Sample 2 (spoken narratives), we found a significant link betw...
Article
Aim: Phenomenological researchers argue that schizophrenia spectrum disorders are primarily disorders of the basic self. To test this argument, we compared self-report and lexical measures of basic self-disturbance between schizophrenia spectrum (high-schizotypy) and non-spectrum groups (low schizotypy). Methods: From an initial sample (n = 310) s...
Article
Depressed people have reduced ability to recall specific autobiographical memories, yet the role of reduced memory specificity in the development of adolescent depression is unclear. Two reasons are the limited longitudinal studies with this age group and the dominant use of just one measure of memory specificity, the Autobiographical Memory Test (...
Article
Research Findings Home-based early childhood education and care (ECEC) is a popular form of small-group ECEC, with potential to facilitate high-quality conversations during shared book reading. To investigate how home-based early childhood educators (ECEs) take advantage of learning opportunities, educators read two storybooks with children (35.5–5...
Article
Full-text available
Does the experience of childbirth create social bonds among first-time mothers? Previous research suggests that sharing emotionally intense or painful experiences with others leads to “identity fusion,” a visceral feeling of oneness with a group that predicts strong forms of prosocial action and self-sacrifice for other group members. This study co...
Article
Extra-textual talk during shared picture book-reading is hypothesized to scaffold children’s early literacy skills; however, observational research has shown mixed results. This study compared meaning- and code-focused talk in rhyming versus non-rhyming picturebooks in relation to children’s language and literacy skills. Forty-five parents were aud...
Article
Do adolescents remember imaginary companions (ICs) from early childhood? Researchers interviewed 46 adolescent participants in a prospective longitudinal study about their ICs from early childhood (age 5½). The existence of one or more ICs was documented in early childhood for 48% of children (G. Trionfi & E. Reese, 2009). At age 16, most adolescen...
Article
Full-text available
The home-learning environment (HLE) is critical for young children's early learning skills, yet little research has focused on HLEs in indigenous communities. This study examined the role of the HLE of 41 whānau (New Zealand Māori families and community) in relation to their young children's (M = 4 years, 4 months) early learning skills. Parents we...
Article
Natural disasters are disruptive to families and communities, particularly when cascading effects continue over time. Such events, and ensuing disruptions to family life, present risks to young children's development, including oral language. Recognition of this potential vulnerability has led to calls for early childhood programming to support par...
Article
This study investigated the memory characteristics of vicarious family stories. Seventy-two families including three generations of women and men from different samples of families were recruited. Results can be described in three main sections: (a) intrafamilial similarities; (b) gender differences; and (c) cross-generational differences. For intr...
Article
Introduction: Research with adults and older adolescents has found that people exhibiting higher narrative coherence in life stories also report higher psychological wellbeing; however, this link has not been investigated longitudinally. The current study investigated concurrent and longitudinal relationships in mid-adolescence between narrative c...
Article
Families preserve and rewrite history in ways that pass on to the next generation a sense of family history based on what is known and what cannot be told. In this paper, we analyze New Zealand European adolescents’ stories about their parents’ childhood, exploring how these young people tell and do not tell family stories shrouded in secrecy. We i...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines children's reminiscing with different members of their family. Sociocultural research shows how mothers and fathers each scaffold children's memory narratives, yet it is not clear how children reminisce with siblings. We therefore captured multiple dyadic conversations from twelve young families including mother, father, and two...
Article
Full-text available
Parents’ elaboration plays an important role in autobiographical memory and socioemotional development. Two types of coding approaches have been used to assess parents’ elaboration: a frequency-based coding (absolute frequencies of different types of elaborative utterances) and a scale-based coding (a 5-point scale based on relative frequencies of...
Article
This long-term follow-up of an early childhood training study (Growing Memories) to promote elaborative reminiscing tested continued effects on mother-child reminiscing and on adolescents' narrative coherence. Of the original 115 families, 100 participated when their children were 3.5 years of age and 76 participated when their children were young...
Article
To determine if a weak narrative self is a core feature of schizophrenia or if it is the result of experiencing the clinical symptoms of the disease, we examined the narrative self of those at high psychometric risk for schizophrenia (HR). Following a screening procedure (n = 310), 80 undergraduate students (39 at HR) wrote personal narratives abou...
Article
Full-text available
Narrative forms are a tool for organizing lived experience, reflecting both the structure of the experience in the world, and the individual’s reactions to that experience; Labov (1972) termed these as referential and evaluative dimensions. We investigated how four individuals narratively structure their stories across these formal narrative compon...
Article
Researchers and teachers explored a new form of teacher–child interactions in two early childhood settings as a means of eliciting complex language. The primary mode of assessment in New Zealand early childhood education takes the form of ‘learning stories’ that teachers write, with photos, and that are collected into a portfolio book. Eight teache...
Article
This commentary applauds the authors of the monograph, The Mother–Child Attachment Partnership in Early Childhood: Secure Base Behavioral and Representational Processes, for their thorough and elegant exploration of the development of attachment working models in the preschool years in relation to maternal sensitivity and attachment representations...
Conference Paper
Narrative self in youth at high risk for developing schizophrenia
Article
This prospective longitudinal study traced changes and individual differences in childhood amnesia over adolescence. A sample of 58 adolescents were followed from age 1-1/2 to age 16 years across 8 timepoints. At ages 12 (n = 46) and 16 (n = 51), adolescents completed an early memory interview. Early childhood measures included children’s self-awar...
Article
Previous research suggests that (a) individual differences in reading and language development are stable across childhood, (b) reading and vocabulary are intertwined, and (c) children's oral narrative skill contributes to later reading comprehension. Each of these three phenomena is assessed using a longitudinal design spanning 15 years, from when...
Article
Maternal elaborative reminiscing supports preschool children's autobiographical memory, self-concept, and emotion understanding. What are the factors contributing to mothers' elaborative style of reminiscing? In a longitudinal community sample (n = 170 at the final data point), this study explored the role of maternal depression (8–44 months), mate...
Conference Paper
The aim of this study was to examine the aspects of the narrative self in people at high risk for developing schizophrenia. Thirty-nine high-risk participants and forty healthy controls (M = 20.83 years, SD = 1.28 years) narrated a turning point event in their life. It was hypothesized that the high-risk individuals would differ from controls in th...
Poster
Full-text available
Preliminary findings of self-disturbance in youth with high schizotypy
Article
Full-text available
Background Phenomenological researchers argue that schizophrenia is first and foremost a disorder of the basic sense of self (also known as ipsity, minimal or core self), that is, of the immediate, pre-reflective, embodied sense of being immersed in the world. According to the self-disorder model, impairment of the basic sense of self precedes clin...
Article
Full-text available
Being a parent of an infant is full of challenges, yet little is known about how child, mother, family, or socio-contextual factors relate to mothers’ self-identified challenges. Mothers of infants from a large (N = 6383) representative longitudinal sample of New Zealand children and their families were asked to report their biggest challenge over...
Article
Full-text available
We examined earlier oral narrative and decoding and later reading in two samples spanning the first four years of reading instruction. The Year 1 sample (n = 44) was initially assessed after one year of instruction (M = 6; 1 years) and followed through their third year (M = 8; 1 years); the Year 2 sample (n = 34) assessed after two years of instruc...
Article
Combining motherhood and paid work presents a significant challenge for many women. We asked 2388 working New Zealand mothers of infants about their biggest highlight and challenge since the birth of their child. Thematic analysis revealed the top three reported highlights were Enjoyment of the Child (40%), Child Development (29%) and Attributes of...
Article
This study explored links between narrative identity, personality traits, and well-being for 263 adolescents (age 12-21) from three New Zealand cultures: Māori, Chinese, and European. Turning-point narratives were assessed for autobiographical reasoning (causal coherence), local thematic coherence, emotional expressivity, and topic. Across cultures...
Article
This study assessed the status of te reo Māori, the indigenous language of New Zealand, in the context of New Zealand English. From a broadly representative sample of 6327 two-year-olds ( Growing Up in New Zealand ), 6090 mothers (96%) reported their children understood English, and 763 mothers (12%) reported their children understood Māori. Parent...
Article
Infants are increasingly cared for by adults other than their parents. Here we describe non-parental infant care within a diverse cohort; and investigate the relationship between parents’ antenatal intentions and actual infant care. 6822 New Zealand women were recruited during pregnancy and asked about their intentions for childcare. Non-parental c...
Article
Adolescents’ intergenerational narratives—the stories they tell about their mothers’ and fathers’ early experiences—are an important component of their identities (Fivush & Merrill, 2016; Merrill & Fivush, 2016). This study explored adolescents’ intergenerational narratives across cultures. Adolescents aged 12 to 21 from 3 cultural groups in New Ze...
Article
The Infant Behavior Questionnaire-Revised Very Short Form (IBQ-R VSF; Putnam, Helbig, Gartstein, Rothbart, & Leerkes, 2014 ) is a newly published measure of infant temperament with a 3-factor structure. Recently Peterson et al. ( 2017 ) suggested that a 5-factor structure (Positive Affectivity/Surgency, Negative Emotionality, Orienting Capacity, Af...
Article
Full-text available
The Infant Behavior Questionnaire Revised-Very Short Form (IBQ-R VSF; Putnam, Helbig, Gartstein, Rothbart, & Leerkes, 2014 ) is a new publicly available measure of infant temperament measuring positive affectivity/surgency (PAS), negative emotionality (NEG), and orienting and regulatory capacity (ORC). Although the initial psychometric properties o...
Article
Full-text available
Parents’ aspirations shape children’s development. In this study, over 6700 pregnant women and over 4300 of their partners from the Growing Up in New Zealand cohort responded to a question about their hopes, dreams, and expectations for their unborn children. Responses were coded according to a Maslowian hierarchy of needs. Mothers and their partne...
Article
Full-text available
In this narrative review, we suggest that children?s language skill should be targeted in clinical interventions for children with emotional and behavioral difficulties in the preschool years. We propose that language skill predicts childhood emotional and behavioral problems and this relationship may be mediated by children?s self-regulation and e...
Article
Full-text available
Longitudinal cohort studies have significant potential to inform policy across a range of child and family areas, including early childhood education and care. Here we describe the relationship between policy-makers and New Zealand’s contemporary pre-birth cohort study. We outline a model for policy interaction that highlights the relationship betw...
Article
Differences in parent-child interactions have implications for a range of developmental outcomes that are of interest to large longitudinal cohort studies. We describe a new method for observing parent-child conversations specifically designed to be a component of a more comprehensive collection of data about child health and development. Participa...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The New Zealand curriculum, Te Whāriki, suggests, " adults should read and tell stories, provide books and story times to allow children to exchange and extend ideas… " (p.73). Understanding how such narrative experiences are provided for within kindergarten is an aim of this study. Formal and informal, planned and spontaneous storytelling experien...
Article
Full-text available
Parents talk about the past with their young children from the time their children can talk. There is robust evidence that when parents discuss the past in a detailed, emotional, and collaborative way (elaborative reminiscing), their children have stronger autobiographical memory skills. We review recent research showing that elaborative reminiscin...
Article
Full-text available
We review research investigating the influence of conversations between parents and their children about past negative experiences on children's memory and management of their emotional experiences. To do so, we are guided by social cultural developmental theory and a developmental psychopathology framework. In the first section, we first discuss t...
Article
Full-text available
The MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventory (short form) was adapted for Samoan and Tongan speakers in New Zealand. The adaptation process drew upon language samples from Samoan and Tongan parent-child dyads with 20- and 26-month-old children and adult informants. The resulting 100-word language inventories in Samoan and Tongan, plus a...
Article
Full-text available
This study aimed to examine which genres parents are reading to children and for themselves. Furthermore, it aimed to examine mothers' and fathers' shared reading strategies for different book genres in relation to children's language and literacy development. Parents shared a narrative and an expository book with their preschool-aged children. Par...
Conference Paper
Te Whāriki, the early childhood curriculum includes direct and indirect activities, and experiences designed to foster learning and development. Adults facilitate learning opportunities through resources and responsive interactions with children. Children’s conversations with adults are associated with their competencies related to communication, w...
Conference Paper
Research has shown that picturebook reading between parents and preschoolers is important for children’s language and emerging literacy skills, yet most studies have focused on fictional narrative books. Few have investigated book genre and its potential for shaping interactions. We will report on two studies that assessed how parents and children...
Conference Paper
Young children’s typical speech development is varied. There are some children whose speech is very clear and other children whose speech continues to be hard to understand even as they approach school age. Developmental articulation errors may be a barrier to developing emergent literacy skills prior to school entry especially phonological awarene...
Conference Paper
We investigate relations between speech-sound (articulation) difficulties and early literacy skills in preschool aged children. Phonological awareness and alphabetic knowledge begin to develop before school entry. Articulation errors may be a barrier to developing alphabetic understanding and phonological recoding to decode and pronounce unknown pr...
Article
Full-text available
Children’s phonological awareness develops rapidly in the preschool years and is an important contributor to later reading skill. This study addresses the role of parents’ talk in preschool children’s phonological awareness development. A community sample of 27 parents and their 3- to 4-year-old children participated in a new ‘Sound Talk’ observati...