Articles and News

Play is paramount for early childhood development

By Kim Doleatto, Posted Oct 15, 2018 at 6:00 AM, Updated Nov 1, 2018 at 9:48 AM

If aliens examined humans, they might puzzle over hopscotch and peek-a-boo, and categorize play as pointless.

But according to the latest research, play is paramount for early childhood development.

https://www.heraldtribune.com/news/20181015/play-is-paramount-for-early-childhood-development

The Power of Play: A Pediatric Role in Enhancing Development in Young Children

Pediatrics, September 2018, VOLUME 142 / ISSUE 3, From the American Academy of Pediatrics, Clinical Report

Children need to develop a variety of skill sets to optimize their development and manage toxic stress. Research demonstrates that developmentally appropriate play with parents and peers is a singular opportunity to promote the social-emotional, cognitive, language, and self-regulation skills that build executive function and a prosocial brain. Furthermore, play supports the formation of the safe, stable, and nurturing relationships with all caregivers that children need to thrive.

Play is not frivolous: it enhances brain structure and function and promotes executive function (ie, the process of learning, rather than the content), which allow us to pursue goals and ignore distractions.

http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/142/3/e20182058

Does Preschool Pay Off? Tulsa Says Yes

December 12, 2017, 12:00 AM ET CLAUDIO SANCHEZ

In 2001, not long after Oklahoma had adopted one of the nation's first universal pre-K programs, researchers from Georgetown University began tracking kids who came out of the program in Tulsa, documenting their academic progress over time. 

In a new report published in the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management today, researchers were able to show that Tulsa's pre-K program has significant, positive effects on students' outcomes and well-being through middle school.

https://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2017/12/12/568378251/does-preschool-pay-off-tulsa-says-yes

Getting The Most Out Of Pre-K, 'The Most Important' Year In School

October 2, 2017, 7:56 AM ET CLAUDIO SANCHEZ

Suzanne Bouffard's new book, The Most Important Year, may be just what parents of preschoolers have been waiting for: a guide to what a quality pre-K program should look like.

Bouffard spent a lot of time in classrooms watching teachers do some really good things and some not-so-good things.

http://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2017/10/02/552868453/getting-the-most-out-of-pre-k-the-most-important-year-in-school