Study of After-School Care and Children's Development
Directors: Deborah Lowe Vandell, Kim M. Pierce
Examining data from when the children were in first grade, Vandell's team found that children's experiences in their after-school programs were associated with teacher ratings of adjustment at school after controlling for family SES and firm-responsive parenting practices. A structured program curriculum was associated with children having fewer emotional/behavioral problems at school, better academic grades, and better work habits. Negative program emotional climate was associated with more child emotional and behavioral problems at school. Greater frequency of negative interactions with peers at the program was associated with more emotional and behavioral problems and poorer social skills at school.
Longitudinal analyses examined assocations between children's experiences in programs from first through fourth grades and child developmental outcomes, after controlling for family income, firm-responsive parenting practices, child gender, and child adjustment at the end of first grade. Cumulative observed program quality was associated positively with children's academic grades in Grades 2 & 3, girls' work habits at school in Grades 3 & 4, and girls' social skills in Grades 3 & 4. Children's reports of a better psychosocial climate in the programs were associated with less loneliness in Grades 2-4 and fewer depressive symptoms in Grades 2 & 3.
About Deborah Lowe Vandell
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File last updated: March 7, 2006. File created: May 28, 2002
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