ERIC Number: ED413100
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997
Reference Count: N/A
Even Start: Facilitating Transitions to Kindergarten.
Riedinger, Susan Allin
The federal Even Start program was implemented to improve the educational opportunities of low-income children and adults by integrating early childhood education, adult education, and parent education into a unified family literacy initiative. Because children's first formal educational experiences may significantly influence the course of their schooling, a study was undertaken to identify promising transition-to-school strategies implemented by Even Start projects. The study had three objectives: (1) to document and describe strategies used by Even Start to smooth children's transitions to kindergarten; (2) to identify the most effective of these strategies; and (3) to provide data and recommendations that can be used to improve the design of transition strategies. To meet these objectives, the literature on transition to kindergarten was reviewed, descriptive data were collected on Even Start projects operating in program year 1993-94, and qualitative data were obtained through site visits to five projects with potentially promising transition strategies. Based on these data, this report describes successful program characteristics and discusses impacts of programs on the parent-child relationship and the literacy environment of the home. The prekindergarten experiences of Even Start children in five projects are also described. The continuity of these children's experience is then discussed by comparing the characteristics of their kindergarten programs with their prekindergarten programs. The report then describes a variety of services for parents and children designed to help smooth the transition to kindergarten and discusses barriers to implementing these strategies. Based on the study's findings, the report makes the following recommendations for Even Start programs: (1) provide intensive parenting education; (2) maintain close contact with all of the prekindergarten programs serving Even Start children; and (3) provide transition services that facilitate interactions among parents, project staff, and preschool and kindergarten teachers. (Contains 29 references, 1 appendix, and 11 tables.) (LPP)
Descriptors: Disadvantaged Environment, Disadvantaged Youth, Early Childhood Education, Family Literacy, Intervention, Kindergarten, Literacy Education, Low Income Groups, Parent Child Relationship, Parenthood Education, Program Effectiveness, Program Evaluation, School Readiness, Transitional Programs, Young Children
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Department of Education, Washington, DC. Planning and Evaluation Service.
Authoring Institution: Mathematica Policy Research, Inc., Plainsboro, NJ.