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EHLS at school: school-age follow-up of the early home learning study cluster randomized controlled trial

Westrupp, Elizabeth M, Bennett, Clair, Cullinane, Meabh, Hackworth, Naomi J, Berthelsen, Donna, Reilly, Sheena, Mensah, Fiona K, Gold, Lisa, Bennetts, Shannon K, Levickis, Penny and Nicholson, Jan M 2018, EHLS at school: school-age follow-up of the early home learning study cluster randomized controlled trial, BMC pediatrics, vol. 18, pp. 1-11, doi: 10.1186/s12887-018-1122-y.

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Title EHLS at school: school-age follow-up of the early home learning study cluster randomized controlled trial
Author(s) Westrupp, Elizabeth M
Bennett, Clair
Cullinane, Meabh
Hackworth, Naomi J
Berthelsen, Donna
Reilly, Sheena
Mensah, Fiona K
Gold, LisaORCID iD for Gold, Lisa orcid.org/0000-0002-2733-900X
Bennetts, Shannon K
Levickis, Penny
Nicholson, Jan M
Journal name BMC pediatrics
Volume number 18
Article ID 148
Start page 1
End page 11
Total pages 11
Publisher BioMed Central
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2018-05-02
ISSN 1471-2431
1471-2431
Keyword(s) cohort study
early childhood
education
home learning environment
long-term follow-up
parenting
school-age assessment
science & technology
life sciences & biomedicine
pediatrics
Summary BACKGROUND: Targeted interventions during early childhood can assist families in providing strong foundations that promote children's health and wellbeing across the life course. There is growing recognition that longer follow-up times are necessary to assess intervention outcomes, as effects may change as children develop. The Early Home Learning Study, or 'EHLS', comprised two cluster randomized controlled superiority trials of a brief parenting intervention, smalltalk, aimed at supporting parents to strengthen the early childhood home learning environment of infants (6-12 months) or toddlers (12-36 months). Results showed sustained improvements in parent-child interactions and the home environment at the 32 week follow-up for the toddler but not the infant trial. The current study will therefore follow up the EHLS toddler cohort to primary school age, with the aim of addressing a gap in literature concerning long-term effects of early childhood interventions focused on improving school readiness and later developmental outcomes.

METHODS: 'EHLS at School' is a school-aged follow-up study of the toddler cluster randomized controlled trial (n = 1226). Data will be collected by parent-, child- and teacher-report questionnaires, recorded observations of parent-child interactions, and direct child assessment when children are aged 7.5 years old. Data linkage will provide additional data on child health and academic functioning at ages 5, 8 and 10 years. Child outcomes will be compared for families allocated to standard/usual care (control) versus those allocated to the smalltalk program (group program only or group program with additional home coaching).

DISCUSSION: Findings from The Early Home Learning Study provided evidence of the benefits of the smalltalk intervention delivered via facilitated playgroups for parents of toddlers. The EHLS at School Study aims to examine the long-term outcomes of this initiative to determine whether improvements in the quality of the parent-child relationship persist over time and translate into benefits for children's social, academic and behavioral skills that last into the school years.
Language eng
DOI 10.1186/s12887-018-1122-y
Field of Research 1114 Paediatrics And Reproductive Medicine
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2018, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30109365

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Psychology
Open Access Collection
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