Decreasing caregivers' positive attitudes toward spanking: An evaluation of the play nicely program and parent-child characteristics in a community sample Article (Faculty180)

cited authors

  • Burkhart, Kimberly; Knox, Michele; Hunter, Kimberly; Pennewitt, Deanna; Schrouder, Karyssa


  • The Play Nicely program is a multimedia training program designed to teach caregivers and health care professionals how to manage early childhood aggression and to use positive parenting practices. The aim of this article is to help the practicing clinician determine whether the Play Nicely program should be incorporated into his/her practice and to evaluate whether the program is effective at decreasing positive attitudes toward spanking in a socioeconomically disadvantaged population in both a resident pediatric clinic and a community center. Thirty-three caregivers of children aged 2 to 5 years viewed the Play Nicely program and completed pre- and post-training questionnaires. Decreased positive attitudes toward spanking were reported after training. Favorable attitudes toward spanking were associated with increased use of harsher discipline and higher child externalizing behavior. This study provides support that this brief intervention is effective in a socioeconomically disadvantaged population, is portable, and can be used in a group setting. This program may serve as a prevention and population-based approach to addressing the adverse childhood experience of spanking.

publication date

  • 2018

published in

start page

  • 333

end page

  • 339


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