The study concentrated on mothers’ reading to their preschool children. Three broad questions were posed about how the mother’s educational level is associated with: (1) the mother’s reasons to read to the child, (2) frequency and duration of this reading, (3) mother-child literacy interaction with the child. The sample of low education mothers (n=55) and high education mothers (n=213) was recruited to fill in a questionnaire of 46 items. Higher education mothers outperformed low education mothers in these variables: reading to the child in order to enhance cognitive development, appreciate the time they are with the child in reading sessions, reading to child frequency, and the number of books the child possesses. On the other hand, low education mothers more frequently than high education mothers ask children about book characters and explain reasons for reading.
This paper is based on the analysis of a focus group interview of a moderator and a group of undergraduate students on the topic of self-regulation of learning. The purpose of the investigation was to identify interaction patterns that appeared in the talk of participants and the moderator. In the stream of communication two rudimentary interaction patterns were recognized. The first pattern was named the Catalogue. It consists of a sequence of turns of participants who respond to a request of the moderator and who provide their answers, one by one, without reacting on the content of the previous partner(s) talk. The other interaction pattern was called the Domino. In this pattern participants respond to each other. The Catalogue pattern prevailed in the interview. Alongside with identification of patterns of interaction the study demonstrated the functions of the common ground and its accomplishment in the talk of the moderator and participants.
This empirical study focused on parents who enrolled their two-year old children in preschools in the Czech Republic. Recent provision of the Ministry of Education recommended that preschools accept children who are as young as two years, in response to increased demands of mothers who want to re-enter the employment after maternity leave. The purpose of the study was to examine the reasons of parents to place their children in preschools as well as their satisfaction of the developmental progress of their children in this institution. A representative sample of parents who enrolled their children in preschool from age two was surveyed (N=520). Surprisingly, caring for the child while at work was not the most important reason. They rated it 3.66 on a five-point scale. Other reasons were rated higher: getting the child accustomed to interaction within groups of same-age children (M=4.01), acquiring cognitive skills and knowledge (M=3.89), and getting accustomed to a routine other than that found at home (M=3.75). When asked to assess the developmental progress of their children due to preschool attendance on a 3-point scale, the parents noted progress in communication ability (M=2.35), social skills (M=2.37) as well as overall progress (M=2.62). Concerning demographic characteristics, the estimate of the child’s overall progress in preschool was significantly related to the mother’s level of education and her marital status.