When I first began covering education, there was an assumption schools were on a solo mission to educate the youth of America; parents dropped off their kids and teachers did the rest.
It didn’t matter whether the child was raised in a home with hundreds of books or just the telephone book: schools were supposed to be the great equalizer. We thought getting children at age 6 or 7 in a classroom was sufficient to remedy any early learning deficiencies and that they could catch up with more school-ready peers through routine classroom instruction.
Thirty-some years later, science has now shown us schools play a smaller role in academic outcomes than we thought and parents and homes play a larger role. In the last decade, research has revealed how what happens -- or doesn't happen -- from birth to age 5 influences a child's language skills and overall readiness to learn. What the child has seen and heard before that first day of school are major contributors to academic success.
Here is a release on a new study that will interest pre-k and early education teachers. I found it fascinating. It deals with the early efforts of children to spell. It is from Washington University in St. Louis.
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.