Education Week discusses Curry Prof Daphna Bassok's research on how today's kindergartners are coming in with more advanced skills than students in the past.
Kindergarten students in 2010 started school with noticeably stronger literacy, math, and behavior skills across the board compared to their peers that started school just 12 years earlier, says a study published this month in the journal Educational Researcher.
The new research was developed by the same researchers who found in a 2014 study that the kindergarten classrooms of today are more like the 1st-grade classrooms of years past. And if more 5-year-olds are starting school easily naming upper and lower-case letters or understanding relative quantities, it might seem like a more academic approach is warranted.
But that's a line of thinking that the researchers want to avoid, said Daphna Bassok, an associate professor of education and public policy at the University of Virginia and the lead author on both papers.
'The question is, how to make kindergarten as engaging for kids as possible?' she said. 'Nothing about what we're saying here is about the way you teach a 5-year-old.'