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.
Published in the Battle Creek Enquirer, December 12, 2011 by Justin A. Hinkley Battle Creek's Janette Brown said she has traveled and learned about other cultures, and she wants the same thing for her 20-month-old daughter, Halia Brown, and her unborn son who is due in March. To that end, Brown regularly brings Halia to three "toddler playgroups" hosted by Early Childhood Connections. One of those playgroups targets English-speaking families, one targets Spanish-speaking families, and the other targets Battle Creek's burgeoning Burmese population.
Michigan Doula Connection announces a free online Doula Registry that provides volunteer doulas to low-income Michigan families. Their new website will also list community-based programs that provide support to families, as well as on-demand continuing education webinars, scholarships for doula training, and free online resources. For more information, visit their website at www.michigandoulaconnection.org.
Two local toy drives are underway in Lenawee County. Details are available in this Daily Telegram article.
These new guidelines are a major shift from current guidelines that suggest such testing be done only for children who have a family history of heart disease or high blood cholesterol, which is one of the major risk factors for heart disease. Read more at http://news.yahoo.com/guidelines-urge-cholesterol-check-kids-ages-9-11-170207560.html
Here are times for Trick-or-Treating around Lenawee County, courtesy of the Daily Telegram.
Pajama-rama is a drive to help collect items for the more than 500 homeless kids in Lenawee County. From Oct. 7-21, donations can be dropped off at United Bank and Trust branches, TLC Community Credit Union branches, First Federal Bank branches, the Lenco Credit Union in Adrian or the Blissfield State Savings Bank in Blissfield. Suggested donations include new underwear, pajamas or socks; $5 restaurant gift cards; or personal hygiene items.
This fall, Lenawee County residents will have the opportunity to participate in a county-wide health assessment survey. The survey is an important first step in determining the future need for health services and resources in our community. As a Lenawee County resident, your participation in the survey is critical. If your household is selected to receive the survey, please plan to participate. Some students in our local school district will also receive surveys at school to take home to complete.
A writer and author for Scientific American Magazine, Katherine Harmon, explains why using money for preschool programs is a great investment. Her full article is available on the Scientific American Blog site.
Michigan Alliance for Families is excited to announce that its website (www.michiganallianceforfamilies.org/eo) now includes information to help families become more involved in the growth and development of their infants and toddlers.