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Childcare effects. Cultural context. Child-care thru 3 & peer competencies. Positive responsive caregiver behavior most consistently associated with positive skilled peer interaction More time in child-care  observed to be more positive and skilled in peer play in child care

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childcare effects

Childcare effects

Cultural context

child care thru 3 peer competencies
Child-care thru 3 & peer competencies
  • Positive responsive caregiver behavior most consistently associated with positive skilled peer interaction
  • More time in child-care  observed to be more positive and skilled in peer play in child care
  • Same for child-care with other kids, but caregivers rated these kids as more negative with playmates.
    • but their observed peer play was not related to the quantity of care.
  • Child-care not associated with peer competence as rated by mothers or as observed in dyadic play with a friend.
  • Maternal sensitivity and children's cognitive and language competence predicted peer competence across all settings and informants, suggesting that family and child-care contexts may play different, but complementary roles in the development of early emerging individual differences in peer interaction.
      • NICHD_Early_Child_Care_Research_Network (2001). "Child care and children's peer interaction at 24 and 36 months: The NICHD study of early child care." Child Development72(5): 1478-1500
Child-Care Effect Sizes Early Child Care and Youth DevelopmentNICHD Early Child Care Research Network
  • Children (n 1,261) were recruited at birth and assessed at 15, 24, 36, and 54 months.
  • Exclusive maternal care did not predict child outcomes
  • Higher quality child care was related to advanced cognitive, language, and preacademic outcomes at every age and better socioemotional and peer outcomes at some ages.
  • More childcare hours predicted more behavior problems and conflict, according to care providers.
  • More center-care time was related to higher cognitive and language scores and more problem and fewer prosocial behaviors, according to care providers.
are there long term effects of early child care
Are There Long-Term Effects of Early Child Care?
  • Parenting was a stronger and more consistent predictor of children’s development than early child-care experience.
  • But higher quality care predicted higher vocabulary scores and more exposure to center care predicted more teacher-reported externalizing problems. Belsky et al., 2007

Existing behavioral scales:

    • Attribute behaviors to be “stable deficits” within children and do not consider cultural and contextual influences
      • behaviors that vary over different settings
    • Do not tell us when, where and how to intervene
  • Development of the Adjustment Scales for Preschool Intervention (ASPI)
    • Specifically developed for low income preschool children
    • “Language of preschool teachers, rather than psychiatric terms”
    • 22 developmentally appropriate preschool classroom situations & 2 non-situation specific unusual behavior problems
      • 144 behavioral items
        • 122 maladaptive behaviors & 22 adaptive behaviors).
      • 5 behavioral dimensions: “Phenos”
        • Externalizing behaviors : aggressive, oppositional & hyperactive/inattentive
        • Internalizing behaviors: withdrawn/low-energy & socially reticent
    • Limitations:
      • Didn’t measure the impact of the multiple contexts within the classroom on outcomes



Goal: To examine the individual and interactional influence of the types of behavioral problems (what) and the situational context(s) in which they occur (where) on children’s developmental outcomes

    • Theoretical Model:
      • developmental-ecological approach  (bioecological systems theory)
  • Study 1:
    • N=3,799 Head Start children
    • Identified 3 reliable and unique situational dimensions: “Situs”
    • Structured learning
    • Peer Interactions
    • Teacher Interactions
    • Age and Gender differences
      • 4 > 5 year olds
      • Boys > Girls



Study 2:

    • N=747
    • Unique relationship between situtypes and school readiness outcomes
      • Hypotheses:
        • The situational dimensions would contribute unique variance to the prediction of social and learning outcomes
        • The combined contribution of both situational and behavioral influences would be greater than either set alone
      • Findings:
          • Peer Social Competencies
            • Play Disconnection, Disruption & Interaction
          • Classroom Learning Competencies
        • Most Importantly
          • Contribution of structured learning to peer social competency & learning outcomes
          • Phenos moderate the influence of Situsin the prediction of multiple social and learning competencies



Limitations/Directions for Future Research

    • Generalizability across ethnic & linguistic groups
    • Multisource assessment across additional time periods
  • Implications for Policy & Practice
    • Responsive to Surgeon General’s call
      • ASPI guides intervention, rather than creating diagnostic labels
      • children are assessed within a “naturalistic context”
    • Developmental-ecological perspective
      • Multiple levels of influence (dynamic transaction):
        • child behavior (ontogenetic)
        • & classroom situation (microsystem)
    • Interventions:
      • Goal shift:“fixing the child”  broader systemic approach
      • Identification of “high-frequency” challenging situations and behavior problems (Classroom Management & Intervention Strategies)
      • Professional Development
      • Curriculum