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ERIC Number: EJ868214
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Sep
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1538-6619
Family Engagement, Diverse Families, and Early Childhood Education Programs: An Integrated Review of the Literature
Halgunseth, Linda
Young Children, v64 n5 p56-58 Sep 2009
The two most influential environments in which young children develop are their homes and their early childhood education programs. In 2005, 60 percent of all U.S. children under age 6 spent some time in the care of persons other than their parents, including 62 percent of White children, 69 percent of Black children, and 49 percent of Hispanic children. Considering that children's time is often divided between these two settings, there is a clear relationship between strong program-family partnerships and children's academic success. While educators have long known about the importance of family engagement for children's learning, some may feel frustrated by perceived low levels of engagement with some families they serve. Perceptions of low engagement may be due to differences in cultural values or languages spoken between program staff and families. They may also result from a program's approach to family engagement. Some programs focus on getting families to change rather than recognizing their strengths and abilities to support children's learning. Using ecological and social exchange theories as frameworks, this article: (1) defines family engagement; (2) describes ways to strengthen relationships between programs and families; and (3) provides evidence-based practices that can strengthen family engagement and improve learning for all children.
National Association for the Education of Young Children. 1313 L Street NW Suite 500, Washington, DC 22205-4101. Tel: 800-424-2460; Tel: 202-232-8777; Fax: 202-328-2649; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
IES Cited: ED557977