The Home Environments of Children in the United States Part II: Relations with Behavioral Development through Age Thirteen

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Abstract

This study examined the frequency with which children were exposed to various parental actions, materials, events, and conditions as part of their home environments, and how those exposures related to their well-being. Part 1 focused on variations by age, ethnicity, and poverty status. In Part 2 of the study, relations between major aspects of the home environment (including maternal responsiveness, learning stimulation, and spanking) and developmental outcomes for children from birth through age 13 were investigated. The outcomes examined were early motor and social development, vocabulary development, achievement, and behavior problems. These relations were examined in both poor and nonpoor European American, African American, and Hispanic American families using hierarchical linear modeling. The most consistent relations found were those between learning stimulation and children's developmental status, with relations for parental responsiveness and spanking varying as a function of outcome, age, ethnicity, and poverty status. The evidence indicated slightly stronger relations for younger as compared with older children.

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