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Parental involvement during the kindergarten transition and children’s early reading and mathematics skills


The kindergarten transition has implications for children’s short- and long-term academic trajectories. In this study, we assess the role that parent expectations about kindergarten readiness and parent–child home activities have on children’s early reading and mathematics skills. We conducted latent profile analyses (LPA) using the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study Kindergarten (ECLS-K) Class of 2010–2011 parent interviews (n = 12,670). Results revealed four distinct profiles: (1) high expectations, fewest home activities; (2) high expectations, high activities; (3) very high expectations, moderate home activities; (4) very high expectations, most home activities. We examined both predictors and distal outcomes of displaying these four profiles. When examining children’s academic skills at kindergarten entry, children with parents in the very high expectations, most home activities profile (Profile 4) have the most advanced academic reading and mathematics skills. Therefore, this profile was deemed most optimal. Children with parents in the very high expectations, moderate activities profile (Profile 3) had higher reading and math scores than children in Profiles 1 and 2. Findings of this descriptive study reveal the heterogeneity of parental involvement during the kindergarten transition and the need for more nuanced research investigating how families assist children during this critical developmental period. (author abstract)

Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States

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