Teacher-Pupil Link Crucial to Pre-K Success, Study Says
The quality of the relationship between preschool teachers and their pupils might be more important to children’s learning than such factors as class size and teacher credentials, a new study suggests. That finding could raise questions about traditional measures of preschool quality favored by early-childhood experts and state policymakers.
Using a sample of more than 2,400 4-year-olds in 671 pre-K classrooms in 11 states, researchers at the University of Virginia found that minimum standards for classrooms—including teachers’ field of study, their level of education, and the teacher-to-child ratio—were not associated with children’s academic, language, and social development.
Instead, academic and language skills were stronger when children received greater instructional support, such as feedback on their ideas and encouragement to think in more complex ways. And children’s social skills were more advanced when teachers showed more positive emotions and were...
This article is available to subscribers only.
To keep reading this article and more, subscribe now or start a 2-week FREE trial.
Access selected articles, e-newsletters and more!