This study investigated the family routines and practices of newly enrolled Head Start attendees and explored connections between routines and practices and children’s school readiness at preschool entry across 5 developmental domains: cognitive, physical, language, social-emotional, and approaches to learning. Utilizing the Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (FACES) 2009 cohort, exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses revealed 5 distinct factors that characterize the underlying relationships between family routines and practices children experience. Specifically, family routine and practice patterns included: (1) implementing learning- and literacy-focused activities; (2) implementing art activities and playing games; (3) engaging in community activities; (4) avoiding unhealthful foods; and (5) consuming healthful foods. Regression results revealed the factors related to implementing art activities and playing games and implementing learning- and literacy-focused activities are the most consistent predictors of school readiness outcomes across all domains measured. (author abstract)
Family routines and practices that support the school readiness of young children living in poverty
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