Early childhood matters.
By the time children from low-income families begin school, they already score significantly lower than their peers on reading and math achievement tests (Rouse et al., 2005).
Families are looking for support, but there is no system that provides it.
A study by Overdeck Family Foundation grantee Family Connects found that 94-99% of families expressed a desire for community resources. The healthcare channel often functions as the most universal support system. 89% of families attend well-child visits and 94% ask their pediatrician for parenting guidance according to a presentation at the 2018 Early Futures conference by Dr. Jack Shonkoff, director of the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University.
Language development and parent language quality are key early predictors of K-readiness.
A longitudinal study (Pediatrics, 2018) by Overdeck Family Foundation grantee LENA found a strong correlation between parental and child conversational turns at ages one through three with language and IQ at ages nine through 13. Additionally, research from grantee partner I-LABS has found that child language accelerates faster for the treatment group with higher parent language quality than for a control group.
Trusted messengers are key to building demand in communities and positively related to the likelihood of program adoption.
A national survey co-funded by Overdeck Family Foundation found that parents were most likely to seek advice from within their own social networks, with 86% looking to immediate family members and 73% relying on friends. 83% also sought advice from healthcare professionals. These sources were not only the most frequently consulted, but also the most trusted.
Tech-enabled parent coaching can be effective in changing parent behavior and related child outcomes.
Grantees LENA Start and I-LABS both use technology-informed coaching to improve parent and child language interactions. Early evidence from these interventions suggests that the coaching is effective at improving both short and long-term child language outcomes.
Promising results for preschoolers by keeping families at the center.
Centering Healthcare Institute
Improving children’s outcomes through group-based prenatal and pediatric healthcare.
Bright by Three
A virtual village built via text message.
An early language program powered by “talk pedometer” technology.
Helping parents support learning for young children.
Provide support to parents outside of systems, filling a key gap for new parents and caregivers and allowing for deeper focus and understanding of needs.
Increase investment in organizations that use group-based coaching to help parents, increasing not only parental knowledge and skills, but also their social capital.
Support organizations that use customer-centric and scalable delivery channels to support families, increasing the reach and impact of interventions.
Facilitate collaboration between researchers, organizations, and practitioners to align on and measure progress towards Kindergarten-readiness.
What types of interventions and support best help parents and caregivers prepare their children for success?
What are the core parent practices and capacities that lead to positive child outcomes?
What supports, resources, and information do parents most want and need, and how do those wants and needs vary across individuals and groups?
What are the most reliable ways to measure changes in parenting and child development at scale?
Can technological innovations be as effective as in-person support?
Page Data Source:
Rouse, C. E., Brooks-Gunn, J., & McLanahan, S. (Eds.). (2005). School readiness: Closing racial and ethnic gaps. [Special Issue] The Future of Children, 15(1).