Transition and protective agency of early childhood learning behaviors as portents of later school attendance and adjustment
This article reports on the study of differential change trajectories for early childhood learning behaviors as they relate to future classroom adjustment and school attendance. A large sample (N = 2152) of Head Start children was followed through prekindergarten, kindergarten, and 1st grade. Classroom learning behaviors were assessed twice each year by teachers who observed gradual declines in Competence Motivation and Attentional Persistence as children transitioned through schooling. Cross-classified multilevel growth models revealed distinct transitional pathways for future adjustment versus maladjustment and sporadic versus chronic absenteeism. Generalized multilevel logistic modeling and receiver operating characteristic curve analyses showed that teachers' earliest assessments were substantially predictive of eventual good classroom adjustment and school attendance, with increasing accuracy for prediction of future sociobehavioral adjustment as time progressed. (author abstract)
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