UBC Community, Partners, and Alumni Publications

Integrated Living Vice President Research and International, Office of the 2009-11-30

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DInullRnullInull IN nullnullnullnullnullNInull19 FAnullnullnullnullnullnullR nullnullIt may take a village to raise a child, according to proverb, but the nullestion of enullctly which nullvillagenullto choose is a manullr life decision for many modern parents.  nulloes raising one’s children in a more anullent community onullr a better developnullmental environment than a disadvantaged area, as conventional wisdom suggestsnullnullot according to a recent study at the nullCnullbased nulluman nullrly nullarning nullartnership nullnullnull, which found that economically diverse neighbourhoods can make a key contribution to early child development.nullased on data from null,nullnullchildren in nullnullneighbourhoods around nullritish Columbia, the study revealed that, on average, young children are better prepared for school when they reside in neighbournullhoods with relatively enullal proportions of anullent and lowernullncome families. nulle nulldings in this study are truly novel, as the predominant school of thought is the more wealth in an area, the greater the benenulls are to the children in that location,nullsays nullennifer nulloyd, a conullnvestigator in the study and nullichael nullmith nulloundation for nullealth nullesearch nullostnulloctoral nullellow. nullur results reveal something very dinullrent. The nullarly nullevelopment nullnstrument nullnullnullnullnull score nullee sidebar on page nullnullbegins to drop as the concentration of anullence surpasses the concentration of lownullncome families.nullnulloyd believes the success of minullednullincome neighbourhoods may be due to the availability of more services and programs, which benenull both lowernullncome and anullent children. nullor enullmple, early literacy programs may be available in minullednullncome areas that are simply not found in more anullent areas. nulld while anullent families may benenull from services available in minullednullncome neighbourhoods, evidence suggests that disadvantaged children may also benenull from living in these locations, which are more resourcenullich than lowernullincome neighbourhoods. nullsessing Denullelonullental readinessThe complenulldata supporting the study’s surprise nulldings were collected using the nullrly nullevelopment nullnstrument nullnullnull an indenulldeveloped by researchers to measure a child’s developmental readiness at kindernullgarten. The nullnulltakes into account the child’s physical health and wellnulleing, social knowledge and competence, emotional health and maturity, language and cognitive development, and communication skills and general knowledge.nullnullchild’s development in the early years is incredibly important – a predictor not only of success in school but also health and wellnulleing throughout the lifenullpan,nullsays nullchard Carpiano, an nullsistant nullrofessor of nullociology and lead investigator in the study. Carpiano believes it is important to think of a child’s development from a longitudinal perspective: given that early child developnullment is an indicator of longnullerm health and wellness, the more that can be known integrAted livingThe nullestion of where to raise a family is top of mind for many nullC. parents. nullew research shows that children thrive  in communities which embrace people from all walks of life.DInullRnullInull IN nullnullnullnullnullNInull20null  nullnullnull Rnullnull OF nullnullnullnullnullnull nullnullA nullOFFnullnull OF nullnull Vnullnull PRnullnullDnullnullRnullnullnullARnull nullnullnullnullnullRnullAnullOnullAnullabout young children’s lives earlier, the better supported they can be. nulloyd agrees: nulleople have traditionally tended to think about early child developnullment predominantly in terms of children’s individual traits and characteristics,nullshe says. nullnulle’re showing that there is also something inherently important about considering the environments in which children are reared.nullnullf particular concern to the researchers is the number of children who aren’t ready for school by age nulle. nullere is a very large proportion of kids who are starting kindernullgarten vulnerable in terms of their physical, socialnullmotional, and languagenullommunicanulltions development,nullnulloyd notes. nullo address the lack of children’s developmental readiness, Carpiano believes communities need to look at the distribunulltion of programs and services in their local area. This should take into account childnullcare, parks, recreation centres, and kidnulland familynullriendly locations that have the ability to improve the nullality of life for children and their families.nulleyond individual factors of innullence, nulloyd stresses that nullearly child development is not simply an issue of private concern for parents, and it’s not simply an issue of institutional concern for schools. nullt’s also an issue of provincenullide concern for policynullmakers.nullThe nenull step for the researchers is to convince policynullakers and government to use the results of their study when considering where to provide services within city planning schemes. nullo this end, nullnull researchers participate in public conferences every year on the state of early child development, alongside health practitioners, policynullakers and other stakeholders.  nullr. Clyde nullertnullan, nullirector of nullnull and conullnvestigator in the current study,  also hosts an annual event to discuss  current and future trends of early child development research. nullt’s important to ask how neighbourhoods matter for raising children,nullsays Carpiano. nullnulle need to consider how neighbourhoods contribute to the nullality of life for a  child’s family.nullThis study was funded by Canadian nullnstitutes of nullealth nullesearch and the nullichael nullmith nulloundation for nullealth nullesearch nullnullnullnull nullnull nullwww.earlylearning.ubc.canullreceives core funding from the null nullinistries of Children and nullamily nullevelopment, of nullducation, and of nullealthy nullving and nullport. nullpecinull pronullcts are supported by nullopulation nullata null which is funded by the Canada nulloundation for nullnnovation, nullnullnull and the null nullinistry of nulldvanced nullducation and nullbour nullarket nullevelopment.nulle nullman early nullarning Partnershinull (help) is a unique research institute housed at Unull that focuses on early childhood development. help applies a nullellnullonullocietynullapproach to understanding early child development. help’s research program considers children’s biological factors and factors related to families, schools, and communities, and provincial and federal governance. help is made up of an interdisciplinary group of researchers from the sinullmanullr universities in nullitish Columbia who come from a variety of disciplines including early childhood education, nursing, medicine, pediatrics, sociology, psychology, and psychometrics. help oversees the collection of Early nullvelopment nullstrument nullnullnulldata across the entire province on an annual basis, allowing for the monitoring of early child development so as to inform local and provincial policynullanullers, practitioners, and other stanulleholders.


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