The nature and impact of changes in home learning environment on development of language and academic skills in preschool children

Dev Psychol. 2010 Sep;46(5):1103-18. doi: 10.1037/a0020065.


In this study, we examined changes in the early home learning environment as children approached school entry and whether these changes predicted the development of children's language and academic skills. Findings from a national sample of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (N = 1,018) revealed an overall improvement in the home learning environment from 36 to 54 months of children's age, with 30.6% of parents of preschoolers displaying significant improvement in the home environment (i.e., changes greater than 1 SD) and with only 0.6% showing a decrease. More important, the degree of change uniquely contributed to the children's language but not to their academic skills. Home changes were more likely to be observed from mothers with more education and work hours and with fewer symptoms of depression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Achievement*
  • Age Factors
  • Child Behavior / physiology*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Environment*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Language Development*
  • Learning / physiology*
  • Male
  • Models, Psychological
  • Mother-Child Relations*
  • Predictive Value of Tests