Preschoolers’ classmates influence their language skills


How well children do academically is tied to how well their classmates do, past studies have found, and the issue of “peer effects” plays out in classrooms across the United States through such practices as tracking. Now a new longitudinal study on children’s language development has found that peer effects exist in preschool classrooms — a level of schooling where there’s not been a lot of examination of peer influences — and raises questions about whether tracking, which is customary in public preschool programs, is a sound approach. The study also found that peer effects may be stronger for some children than for others. The study was carried out by researchers at the Ohio State University, Florida State University, and the University of Virginia. It appears in the journal Child Development.

Source: e! Science News

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