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Understanding how children's engagement and teachers' interactions combine to predict school readiness

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Description:
This study examined the quality of preschool classroom experiences through the combination of children's individual patterns of engagement and teachers' classroom-level interactions in predicting children's gains in school readiness. A sample of 605 children and 309 teachers participated. The quality of children's engagement and teacher interactions was directly observed in the classroom, and direct assessments of children's school readiness skills were obtained in the fall and again in the spring. Latent profile analysis was used to examine children's patterns of engagement with teachers, peers, and tasks. Children's engagement and the quality of teacher interactions were associated with gains in school readiness skills. The effect of children's individual classroom engagement on their expressive vocabulary was moderated by classroom-level teacher interactions. The results suggest that when teachers engage in highly responsive interactions across the children in their classrooms, children may develop more equitable school readiness skills regardless of their individual engagement patterns. (author abstract)
Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
Country:
United States

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