Friday, November 13, 2009

Giving Every Child A Chance To Learn

In light of our post and your discussion about the D's and F's environment that most city school students come from, "Parenting, Language Development and School Readiness: The Importance of Early Brain Development," a new report by the Urban Child Institute, is crucial reading for anyone who cares about our children.

The skills that help a child succeed in kindergarten begin to develop long before she enters school. Language skills, for example, begin to develop as soon as a child hears her first words. Early childhood language development reflects both parenting practices and the type of language that young children hear at home. Preschool language skills, in turn, are strongly associated with later literacy and academic achievement.

Interventions that increase parental responsiveness, that improve parental language, and that encourage reading to young children help to place these children on the strongest possible footing when it is time for them to enter kindergarten.

In the end, so much of success in school and life is about early brain development, and as Urban Child Institute points out, if a child's synapses are not developed at this early age, education is much more difficult.


Midtowner said...

Oh please. This isn't "crucial" reading. It is just plain common sense.

Let's boil it down in a nutshell. Children whose parents speak properly to them, read to them, and who are engaged with them have better language skills ... well duh!

But you see, for too many in the welfare-poverty culture, they can't be bothered! Look at the recent publicized deaths of children that the mother just left at home to go shopping. She couldn't be bothered.

This study may mean something to you and may be common sense to me, but for those in the welfare-poverty culture ... well ... meh!

We already know that many, if not most, in the welfare-poverty culture lack good parenting skills.

Tell us something we don't know.

What are these "interventions"? What has been tried? What has worked or not worked? Do the parents stay on track or lapse back into old habits?

How do you get someone who can't be bothered to care?

Smart City Consulting said...

Urban Child Institute has reports on several affordable interventions. We're glad you are aware of the 100 billion neurons and the synapses, because each year, when this is presented to various leadership classes here, they are astounding.

It's about neurological development, and we're too long treated it as if these kids just don't want to learn. That's the overriding point of the report, or at least that's what we got from it.

Chuck said...

Dear Smart:

A study in the early 1990s in Memphis concluded that in-home assistance by the visiting nurses' association for pre-natal and post-natal mothers and their children helped produce better early childhood learning and health.

The Pre-K and Head Start programs we struggle to create are important, but the truly important focus is for 0-3 age nurturing, nutrition and brain stimulation.

Day care homes and centers exist for 0-3 age care, but most day care operations are little more than a baby-sitting service, which does not achieve adequate early childhood development.

Pre-K and Head Start at age 4 is too late.


Zippy the giver said...

So, you don't know what to do.
Your to do list is empty.
You have no plan, and those two words in a row are crucially set as such.

Smart City Consulting said...


Sorry, but we don't have the time to summarize all the previous posts on these issues, but there is a plan, as we've written often before. Central to it is the work and strategies of Urban Child Institute.

Zippy the giver said...

Never seen it posted as "a plan".
Did it leave here and end up on the person's desk who could make it happen?
This post looks kinda short sighted as far as raising kids that not only get through college, but ,end up succeeding without eventually being arrested, killed, or committing suicide.

Zippy the giver said...

We used to say "it's kids having babies", well, those babies grew up and had kids, their kids had kids while they were still kids, just like mom and dad, their kids had kids while they were kids too.
What you have HERE is a cultivated culture with little education. A CULTIVATED condition, and a CULTURE as a response, designed to be exactly what it is, uneducated and not mentally lature in any area, including and especially conflict resolution and education, coupled.
Without those two things they will FOREVER BE THE SLAVES OF THE PAST.
It's a condition, with elements of institutionalized slavery handed down as a system, as taught by the past, economic slavery as a developed condition as the main effect, and the condition is called CULTIVATED SLAVERY.
In Memphis, all you had to do was live in a poor neighborhood to get your taste and going to a public school and many churches, the instruments of it's administration IN MEMPHIS, your chances of catching the disease were greatly increased.
This is just now beginning to go away.
It needed to be posted here too.

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