ERIC Number: ED544027
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-May
Reference Count: 0
Home-School Differences: What It Means for Kindergarten Readiness. NCRECE In Focus. Volume 1, Issue 4
Goffin, Stacie G.
National Center for Research on Early Childhood Education
Differences between home and school environments are a topic of longstanding interest and often of concern. The "match" between home and school in terms of child-rearing beliefs and socialization practices can affect the ease with which children adapt to school and ultimately their success in meeting school expectations. With growing numbers of children coming to school from different ethnic and cultural groups, this issue is taking on new relevance for school readiness, especially since teachers of these children rarely reflect similar ethnic and cultural diversity. This discrepancy could facilitate and exacerbate the impact of a home-school mismatch, conferring advantage to children who come from home environments resembling that of the school and demanding more adjustment to the ways and expectations of school from children representing different ethnic and cultural groups. Typically, discussions of home-school match examine the extent to which home and school environments are similar or different from one another. Usually they begin with the assumption that similarity of beliefs and practices lead to better outcomes for children. This study examines that assumption and raises the question of whether measuring only the presence or absence of a match between home and school environments may mask important differences that have meaning for children's success in school. By raising this question, this study stretches current thinking, questioning what represents a home-school match, and challenging whether a "match" is always positive. It goes beyond absolute statements of same or different to explore categories of differences--specifically differences in adult- and child-centered child-rearing beliefs and socialization practices revolving around levels of adult control and support in their interactions with children. Delving more deeply into variations between parents' and teachers' beliefs and practices in this regard, it explored the consequences of the "directionality of home-school differences" for pre-kindergarten (pre-k) children's academic and social-emotional competence at the beginning of kindergarten by observing 310 children in 40 pre-k classrooms across 6 states, each with large publically-funded pre-k programs. Of the 310 children, 145 children (47%) were Euro American, 89 (29%) were African American, and 76 (24%) were Latino. While teachers were mostly Euro American (56%), the teachers observed were also African American (20%), Latino (14%), and Multiracial/Asian (10%).
Descriptors: Cultural Pluralism, School Readiness, Emotional Intelligence, Kindergarten, Preschool Education, Socialization, Preschool Children, Student Diversity, Educational Environment, Family Environment, Child Rearing
National Center for Research on Early Childhood Education. 350 Old Ivy Way Suite 100, Charlottesville, VA 22903. Tel: 866-301-8278; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://curry.virginia.edu/research/centers/castl/project/ncrece
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Kindergarten; Preschool Education
Sponsor: Institute of Education Sciences (ED)
Authoring Institution: National Center for Research on Early Childhood Education (NCRECE)