Silvia Zocchi, Serena Lecce, Paola Palladino, Adriano Pagnin

Theory of Mind and meta-knowledge about reading: a study on children attending fourth and fifth grade

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Keywords: Theory of Mind, metacognition, emotion understanding, cognitive understanding

Starting from recent theoretical and empirical attempts to connect Theory of Mind (ToM) and meta cognition research field, the study aimed at analysing the existence and the specificity of a link between ToM abilities and meta-knowledge about reading comprehension task. To address this issue, we tested 80 Italian children attending fourth (mean age = 9.8 years) and fifth grade (mean age = 10.6 years) for their ToM, metacognitive knowledge and verbal abilities. Within the construct of ToM, we operate a distinction between different categories of inner states (cognitions vs. emotions). The research results confirm the existing literature on the links between ToM and metacognition. Specifically, we found that children's metacognition correlates with their cognitive understanding, also taking individual differences in verbal abilities into account.

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