Despite recent changes, substantial federal support to lower the costs of child care for nearly all families with young children and to promote high-quality pre-K for all children at ages 3 and 4 remains in legislation championed by Senator Patty Murray and Representative Bobby Scott. As the legislation is complex, early childhood leaders should familiarize themselves with the details by reviewing the text and consulting explanations provided by organizations such as the First Five Years Fund.
Researchers in Norway found few quality studies on interventions that promote social inclusion of preschoolers with immigrant and ethnic minority backgrounds. From the seven studies that met their criteria, the researchers identified four themes that are important to include in such interventions: a strength-based approach; the involvement of family and the larger community; cultural brokerage; and ways of enabling meaningful intergroup contact.
“Parent and community-based interventions can positively increase social inclusion amongst immigrant and native children,” University of Stavanger researchers Serap Keles, Elaine Munthe and Erik Ruud wrote. Noting that preschoolers’ social development is associated with school readiness and overall development, “more inclusive interventions should be developed and their effectiveness should be rigorously evaluated,” they concluded. Read the study here.
An investigation into why many early childhood education and care centers struggle to provide successful physical activity programs identified shortcomings reported by educators. Researchers in Australia reviewed 12 studies identifying barriers and facilitating factors for implementing structured physical activity programs, and categorized them. Educator training, organizational policies and readiness, physical environment and space, and supporting resources and time were common themes.
Deakin University researchers A. Jerebine and L. Barnett said “greater investigation and reporting of training to build educator knowledge, skills and confidence is warranted.” Read the abstract here.
Poor gross and fine motor skills among preschool-age children predicted peer victimization, researchers in Norway found. “Parents and teachers should be aware that children struggling with age-appropriate motor accomplishments may also be at risk of experiencing peer victimization,” they wrote.
Being a 3-year-old with poor fine motor skills was significantly associated with becoming the regular target of aggression by other children at age 5, they found. Having poor fine motor skills at age 5 was significantly linked to peer victimization at age 8. The longitudinal study used data on 23,215 children from the Norwegian Mother, Father and Child Cohort Study.
“Our results highlight the importance of implementing interventions against peer victimization already in pre-school years,” wrote Elise Øksendal, Ragnhild Eek Brandlistuen, and Mari Vaage Wang of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health and Arne Holte of the University of Oslo. Read the study here.
Researchers used a new approach to determine whether pre-kindergarten teachers implemented as intended a web-based instructional program designed to boost early reading and literacy. They found the Read It Again Mobile program may not have an intervention effect, finding no difference between treatment and control students. The random control trial involved 216 pre-kindergarteners in 30 classrooms.
Using process data provided “unique fidelity information concerning treatment exposure, adherence, and quality of program delivery,” wrote Nathan P. Helsabeck, Laura M. Justice, and Jessica A. R. Logan of The Ohio State University. They found “the presence of technology in the classroom does not assure that the technology will be used effectively” and that these types of interventions “may require additional monitoring and coaching to assure use as intended.” Read the abstract here.