Martin-Ordas G (2017) 'Will I Want These Stickers Tomorrow?' Preschoolers' Ability to Predict Current and Future Needs. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 35 (4), pp. 568-581. https://doi.org/10.1111/bjdp.12195
Between 3 and 5 years of age children develop the ability to plan for their own and others' future needs; however, they have great difficulty predicting future needs that conflict with current ones. Importantly, this ability has only been tested in the domain of physiological states (e.g., thirst). Therefore, it is still an open question whether in a different context preschoolers can disengage from their current needs to secure a different future one. In a Resource Allocation task, 4- and 5-year-olds had to distribute three types of rewards between themselves and another child for either "right now" or "tomorrow." Children's current needs were manipulated by providing them (or not) with their preferred reward at beginning of the task. Only 5-year-olds could predict future needs that conflict with their current ones and act accordingly. Younger children's performance is discussed in the context of temporal and social distance.
Bischof-Köhler account; future needs; prosociality; preschoolers
British Journal of Developmental Psychology: Volume 35, Issue 4
|Publication date online||20/07/2017|
|Date accepted by journal||22/06/2017|
|Publisher||Wiley-Blackwell for British Psychological Society|