Poverty, Self-Regulation and Executive Function, and Learning in K-2 Classrooms: A Systematic Literature Review of Current Empirical Research
Children living in poverty frequently enter kindergarten lacking critical cognitive, academic, and social-emotional skills, and this gap predictably widens through 12th grade. Several researchers have developed intervention programs intended to close the academic gap by building foundational curricular skills. These interventions may not be the most efficacious methods to address student needs. Given recent efforts to establish early childhood education standards and the implicit push to close learning and achievement gaps, it is important to identify research-based interventions for practitioners and decision makers. The purpose of this systematic review of empirical literature, reduced from 115 to 19 articles, was to identify research related to specific pedagogical and instructional approaches used to impact poverty’s effects on elementary children’s academic performance. The results of all 19 studies support emerging research suggesting that executive function is negatively impacted by poverty, highly malleable in early childhood, and strongly predictive of academic success when children enter school. Focusing on developing these skills, in addition to specific disciplinary skills, may help young at-risk learners gain a significant advantage in school.
SOURCE: Journal of Research in Childhood Education, 12 Jun 2019.. “Poverty, Self-Regulation and Executive Function, and Learning in K-2 Classrooms: A Systematic Literature Review of Current Empirical Research”
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