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The Playing and Learning Strategies (PALS) Intervention in Early Head Start Programs: Reducing the Effects of Toxic Stress for Children in Poverty

The primary purpose of this study is to implement an evidence-based parenting intervention, Playing and Learning Strategies (PALS) to evaluate the role of parenting quality in buffering children from toxic stress associated with poverty. Specifically, the project will: (1) measure young children's exposure to 15 indicators of poverty related hazards, constituting "toxic stress" and determine the extent to which exposure to these dimensions are associated with lower levels of parenting quality and elevated levels of stress physiology biomarkers for children; (2) implement the ABC parenting intervention and document how the intervention can be adapted and implemented within existing EHS activities; and (3) evaluate the efficacy of the PALS parenting intervention. For the third goal, families will be randomly assigned to either (1) home-visiting services where they will receive 14 weeks of intervention in addition to regularly delivered services or to a (2) 'business as usual' control condition. Results from this study are expected to advance applied developmental neuroscience and contribute to the field's knowledge base regarding the role of Early Head Start in supporting parenting and buffering children from the effects of toxic stress.
Resource Type:
Administration for Children and Families/OPRE Projects
Principal Investigator(s):

Related resources include summaries, versions, measures (instruments), or other resources in which the current document plays a part. Research products funded by the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation are related to their project records.

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