Parental involvement in the development of children's reading skill: a five-year longitudinal study

Child Dev. Mar-Apr 2002;73(2):445-60. doi: 10.1111/1467-8624.00417.


This article presents the findings of the final phase of a 5-year longitudinal study with 168 middle- and upper middle-class children in which the complex relations among early home literacy experiences, subsequent receptive language and emergent literacy skills, and reading achievement were examined. Results showed that children's exposure to books was related to the development of vocabulary and listening comprehension skills, and that these language skills were directly related to children's reading in grade 3. In contrast, parent involvement in teaching children about reading and writing words was related to the development of early literacy skills. Early literacy skills directly predicted word reading at the end of grade 1 and indirectly predicted reading in grade 3. Word reading at the end of grade 1 predicted reading comprehension in grade 3. Thus, the various pathways that lead to fluent reading have their roots in different aspects of children's early experiences.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Educational Status
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Language Development
  • Male
  • Motivation
  • Ontario
  • Parent-Child Relations*
  • Phonetics
  • Reading*
  • Writing