A new parent may want to consider enrolling in education courses through their pediatric primary care center, as a new study is suggesting that these kinds of programs can increase parent-child play and other activities that are critical to boosting school readiness.
The study was recently published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, and found that these kinds of courses were especially beneficial to families that were considered "at-risk," which could be due to socioeconomic standings.
"Research has shown that children growing up in poverty fall behind their middle-class peers in development – even before their first birthday," said Dr. Alan L. Mendelsohn, a developmental-behavioral pediatrician and associate professor of Pediatrics at NYU School of Medicine and Bellevue Hospital Center. "Our study found that programs working with parents during pediatric check-ups increase verbal interactions between parents and children and help children in low income families keep up with their peers."
The study found that when interventions begin while the child is still an infant, it may be able to help reduce the education gap for children who grow up in lower-income families.