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March 14, 2016
For decades the prevailing wisdom has been that "early education" in the form of more institutional daycare and preschool is critical to a child's healthy development. Programs such as Head Start have long been touted as the way to give poor children a leg up for real school. New York City recently instituted universal (free) pre-K for four-year-olds there at a cost of $400 million. Here's how Mayor Bill de Blasio described the program, and the rationale for it, to National Public Radio:
Our 4-year-olds will do all the fun things 4-year-olds love to do: They'll paint and they'll sing and they'll count numbers out loud. But, at the same time, it will be part of a very carefully calibrated curriculum to prepare them to be on-target for their next experience up ahead in kindergarten.
But a study by researchers at Mississippi State University has found that by doing just one thing each week, parents can boost their children's development by five different measures. What is this special weekly something? Going to church.
A report at The Family in America on the MSU study puts it this way: "[T]he more that a child's mother or father participates in public worship on a weekly basis, the higher the rating of a child's eagerness to learn, variety of interests, creativity, persistence, and responsibility."
Maybe, as the report continues, "the well being of children depends more on parents than on parental substitutes." And it probably shouldn't come as much of a surprise that going to church has multiple benefits beyond the obvious ones.
You can read The Family in America report here.
For further reading we recommend:
Inconvenient Truths About Childcare Subvert the Very Best Intentions
by Marcia Segelstein
How Common Core Promotes Cultural Engineering by Killing the Imagination
by Robin Phillips
On Compulsory Mis-education
Teaching the Young to Despise Their Heritage
by Cameron Wybrow
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