The only child grows up: exploring adult only-child educators /
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The purpose of this study was to examine the experiences of adult only-child educators. The researcher explored the extent to which the experiences of growing up in a one-child family influenced the participants' professional experiences. This was a qualitative study. A narrative case study approach was used, and data were collected from 4 participants through 1 -to- 1 interviews. The narratives were analyzed, and common themes were identified. The findings showed that many of the participants' only-child experiences have influenced their professional roles as educators. This was largely with respect to their interactions with students. These participants valued positive relationships founded on genuine care and concern for their students. The participants also fostered a positive educational environment that provided high levels of support for the social learning and character development of their students. There are several implications for educational practice resulting from this study. Educators and other school personnel must be critically aware of meeting the socialization needs of their students. Consideration must be given to developing schoolwide initiatives related to the social skills development and character education of students. In addition, preservice and inservice teacher education programs must ensure that educators are prepared to provide rich environments where relationships with students are central and social learning opportunities are prevalent.