Concerted cultivation as a Parenting practice
Concerted cultivation is a style of parenting. The expression is attributed to Annette Lareau. This parenting style or parenting practice is marked by a parent's attempts to foster their child's talents by incorporating organized activities in their children's lives. This parenting style is commonly exhibited in middle class and upper class American families, and is also characterized by consciously developing language use and ability to interact with social institutions. Many have attributed cultural benefits to this form of child-rearing due to the style's use in higher income families, conversely affecting the social habitus of children raised in such a manner. A child that has been concertedly cultivated will often express greater social prowess in social situations involving formality or structure attributed to their increased experience and engagement in organized clubs, sports, musical groups as well as increased experience with adults and power structure. While this pattern of child rearing holds no innate positive qualities, it has been linked to an increase in financial and academic success.
Negative considerations have included an overburdened sense of entitlement, potentially disrespectful behavior toward authority figures, lack of creativity, and the psychosomatic inability to play or relax. As a result, advocates of Slow parenting prefer less management of childhood activities. None of these effects can be considered without broader cultural and economic considerations.
Concerted cultivation also emphasizes the use of reasoning skills and variations in language use. Parents start to encourage their children to learn how to speak with adults so that they become comfortable and understand the importance of eye contact and speaking properly at an earlier age. According to Lareau, with these type of experiences, middle-class parents try to pursue the concerted cultivation approach. They also try to promote a sense of entitlement in their children, middle class children are encouraged to see adults as their equals. Concerted cultivation causes a transmission of differential advantages, meaning they end up having a financial and educational advantage in life over children reared based on other methods. Children who are reared using the concerted cultivation method are set apart in academic environments, such as college campuses, and they also learn to have more confidence when confronted with social interactions.
Children start to form a certain sense of entitlement because of their early comfort interacting with adults. Children also become more comfortable questioning adults, and it is easier for them to see themselves as equals. With concerted cultivation, the practices often infiltrate into the family life. Frequent gatherings provide opportunities for further cultivation such as eating at the dinner table together.
Thank Prof. Annette Lareau for inventing this concept.