Dodge et al (1983)
Aim: To investigate whether there are behavioural differences between popular and rejected children in a playground.
Method: Naturalistic observation of 5 year olds in a playground. Focues on pairs of children and watched to see how a 3rd child would approach and attempt to join in a game. Recorded behaviours such as time spent watching, disruptive play of others, being generally uncooperative and making critical comments.
Findings: Popular and rejected childern differed significantly in their approaches. Popular- watched, waited, made group orientated statements and were gradually accepted. Rejected- highly active and aggressive, disrupting play of the others, being generally uncooperative and making critical comments.
Conclusion: The unpopularity of rejected children relates to deficits in social skills.