Involvement in child’s care and education

Parents can influence their young child’s literacy development through the home environment they create, their self-efficacy beliefs, their attitudes toward literacy and education, and their involvement in their child’s care and education. Research indicates that parent involvement can produce positive academic outcomes rang¬ing from benefits in early childhood to adolescence and beyond (Henderson & Mapp, 2002; Patrikakou, Weiss¬berg, Redding, & Walberg, 2005). Children whose parents are involved in their child care and school tend to have better grades, fewer behavioral problems, and are more sociable (National Center for Family Literacy, 2003). Parent involvement in their child’s care and education (including nursery and preschool) refers to a parent’s active involvement in their child’s classrooms, frequent communication with their child’s teachers or child care providers, and having knowledge of what their child is learning in school. Research shows high value in parental involvement in their child’s early literacy (e.g., print awareness, vocabulary, and language development) (Senechal & Lefevre, 2001; Crain-Thoreson, et al., 2001; Metsala, 1996; Rush, 1999; Neuman, 1996; Sonnenschein & Munsterman, 2002; Tabors, et al., 2001). Moreover, an early reading intervention program that incorporates parent participation in their child’s reading has been shown to stimulate early learning skills in children (Parker, Boak, Griffin, Ripple, & Peay, 1999).

One way to measure parental involvement in child care and school activities is to target the school or organization in which your program is striving for greater parent involvement. Ask parents and staff of the programs to estimate the amount of time spent in the program pre and then after training to educate parents about how to effectively be involved in their child's activities. Participant data could be collected at intake/enrollment; at 3, 6, or 12 months after point of enrollment; and at termination/exit.

Work Cited

Crain-Thoreson, C., Dahlin, M. P., & Powell, T. A. (2001). Parent-child interaction in three conversational contexts: Variations in style and strategy. In P.R. Britto & J. Brooks-Gunn (Eds.), Role of family literacy environments in promoting young children’s emerging literacy skills (pp. 7-23). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Henderson, A. T., & Mapp, K. L. (2002). A new wave of evidence: The impact of school, family, and community connections on student achievement. Austin, TX: National Center for Family and Community Connections with Schools.

Metsala, J. L. (1996). Early literacy at home: Children’s experiences and parents’ perspectives. Reading Teacher, 50(1), 70-72.

National Center for Family Literacy. (2003). Literacy facts and figures (4th ed.). Louisville, KY: Author. Retrieved June 6, 2003,  Crain-Thoreson, C., Dahlin, M. P., & Powell, T. A. (2001). Parent-child interaction in three conversational contexts: Variations in style and strategy. In P.R. Britto & J. Brooks-Gunn (Eds.), Role of family literacy environments in promoting young children’s emerging literacy skills (pp. 7-23). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Henderson, A. T., & Mapp, K. L. (2002). A new wave of evidence: The impact of school, family, and community connections on student achievement. Austin, TX: National Center for Family and Community Connections with Schools.

Metsala, J. L. (1996). Early literacy at home: Children’s experiences and parents’ perspectives. Reading Teacher, 50(1), 70-72.

National Center for Family Literacy. (2003). Literacy facts and figures (4th ed.). Louisville, KY: Author. Retrieved June 6, 2003

Neuman, S. B. 1998. A social-constructivist view of family literacy. In E. G. Sturtevant, J. Dugan, P. Linder, & W. M. Linek (Eds.), Literacy and Community (pp. 25-31). Texas: The College Reading Association.

Lamb-Parker, F., Boak, A., Griffin, K., Ripple, C., & Peay, L. (1999). Parent-child relationship, home learning environment, and school readiness. School Psychology Review, 28(3), 413-425.

Patrikakou, E. N., Weissberg, R. P., Redding, S., & Wal¬berg, H. J. (Eds.). (2005). School-family partner¬ships: Fostering children’s school success. New York: Teachers College Press.

Rush, K. L. (1999). Caregiver-child interactions and early literacy development of preschool children from low-income environments. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education, 19(1), 3-14.

Senechal, M., LeFevre, J. (2001). Storybook reading and parent teaching: Links to language and literacy development. In P.R. Britto & J. Brooks-Gunn (Eds.), Role of family literacy environments in promoting young children’s emerging literacy skills (pp. 7-23). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Sonnenschein, S., & Munsterman, K. (2002). The influence of home-based reading interactions on 5-year olds reading motivations and early literacy development. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 17, 318-337.

Tabors, P. O., Beals, D. E., & Weizman, Z. O. (2001). “You know what oxygen is?” Learning new words at home. In D. K. Dickinson & P. O. Tabors (Eds.), Beginning Literacy with Language (pp. 93-110). Baltimore, MD: Paul Brookes Publishing.

Neuman, S. B. 1998. A social-constructivist view of family literacy. In E. G. Sturtevant, J. Dugan, P. Linder, & W. M. Linek (Eds.), Literacy and Community (pp. 25-31). Texas: The College Reading Association.

Lamb-Parker, F., Boak, A., Griffin, K., Ripple, C., & Peay, L. (1999). Parent-child relationship, home learning environment, and school readiness. School Psychology Review, 28(3), 413-425.

Patrikakou, E. N., Weissberg, R. P., Redding, S., & Wal¬berg, H. J. (Eds.). (2005). School-family partner¬ships: Fostering children’s school success. New York: Teachers College Press.

Rush, K. L. (1999). Caregiver-child interactions and early literacy development of preschool children from low-income environments. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education, 19(1), 3-14.

Senechal, M., LeFevre, J. (2001). Storybook reading and parent teaching: Links to language and literacy development. In P.R. Britto & J. Brooks-Gunn (Eds.), Role of family literacy environments in promoting young children’s emerging literacy skills (pp. 7-23). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Sonnenschein, S., & Munsterman, K. (2002). The influence of home-based reading interactions on 5-year olds reading motivations and early literacy development. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 17, 318-337.

Tabors, P. O., Beals, D. E., & Weizman, Z. O. (2001). “You know what oxygen is?” Learning new words at home. In D. K. Dickinson & P. O. Tabors (Eds.), Beginning Literacy with Language (pp. 93-110). Baltimore, MD: Paul Brookes Publishing.