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Citation:Diamond, K. E., Reagan, A. J., & Bandyk, J. E. (2000). Parents' conceptions of kindergarten readiness: relationships with race, ethnicity, and development. The Journal of Educational Research, 94(2), 93-100.

The purpose of this study is to examine parentsÕ conceptions of kindergarten readiness and home-learning activities. The goals of the study are to examine the relationships between parentsÕ readiness beliefs and home activities. Most parents said that a variety of academic and behavioral skills are important for childrenÕs success in kindergarten. Parents reported that they provide their children with home-based learning opportunities and read to their children several times each week. No significant relationship was found between the frequency parents read to their child or (their child watched educational television) and parentsÕ concerns about their childÕs readiness for kindergarten. Parents who were more highly educated were more likely to state that they would delay sending their child to kindergarten. ParentsÕ racial and ethnic background also influenced their decision to delay their childÕs entry into kindergarten. Families appeared to emphasize academic skills more than child behavior when making decisions about kindergarten readiness. Data were drawn from the National Household Education Survey (1993) and the School Readiness interview, consisting of 168 questions on school readiness beliefs, developmental abilities, frequency of specific home activities, preschool participation, parent concerns about kindergarten, and demographic data. The authors used a representative sample of 2,509 U.S. households with 3-5 year old children and later retained all families with 4-6 year-old children who had not entered kindergarten. Findings suggest that parents have a global view of kindergarten readiness when applied to children in general, but they place the most emphasis on their childÕs academic abilities when making individual decisions. Educators may use the findings to better understand parent expectations and beliefs. Since his study did not include a control group for the purpose of comparison, the findings are not universally applicable or generalizable to all school contexts.

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