The University of Nebraska-Lincoln, partnering with Lincoln Action Program and Lincoln Public Schools, will study the relationship between child care quality in Head Start classrooms, child social knowledge and competence, and child learning outcomes. The researcher intend to: (a) investigate the effect of child care quality on children's social knowledge, competence, and learning outcomes; (b) distinguish social knowledge from social competence; (c) examine how social knowledge and competence influence learning outcomes, and (d) determine if social knowledge mediates the relationship between child care quality and learning outcomes. Participants will include 72 English-speaking children from twelve Head Start classrooms. Lead teachers from each classroom will also be assessed. Observational data will be collected using the Early Childhood Environment Rating Scale-Revised and Caregiver Interaction Scale. Child assessments will include a Classroom Model Task, the Peabody Picture and Vocabulary Test, Third Edition, and Story and Print Concepts task. Teachers will complete an Asset Questionnaire, Teacher Beliefs and Practices Survey, Classroom Behavior Checklist, and Social Map. The researchers expect that results from the study will help inform Head Start teachers and administrators about strategies to improve the overall success of children in their care.
Administration for Children and Families/OPRE Projects