It is well-established that parental reading to children is of significant benefit to child development, and growing evidence suggests that ‘Dialogic Book-sharing’ (DBS) techniques maybe particularly advantageous. However, families at raised socio-economic risk not only use books less often with their children, but when they do they are less likely to use DBS techniques. We conducted a cluster randomized trial of a DBS intervention in Children’s Centers in the UK, with parents of 2- to 4-year-old children. Intervention group parents (n = 110) attended 7 weekly small group training sessions, and Control group parents (n = 108) received usual Center input. In both groups, child development and parenting were assessed on three occasions: before the intervention, immediately afterwards, and at 4-6 month follow up. While there was no significant benefit to child development for the Intervention group, there were substantial improvements in parental behavior during book-sharing. Despite the lack of benefit of the intervention for child outcome in the Intervention group overall, children of parents who engaged well showed gains in their language. Further, for most measures, the difference between groups appeared to increase between post-intervention and follow-up, consistent with the possibility that the intervention may place children on a more positive developmental trajectory, but may take longer than 4-6 months to show significant benefits to child development.
|Effective start/end date||7/05/20 → …|
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