Effects of family literacy programs on the emergent literacy skills of children from low-SES families: A meta-analysis

Best Evidence in Brief Index

By José L. Arco-Tirado, Faculty of Education, University of Granada (Spain)

A recent meta-analysis published in the Review of Educational Research has synthesized the findings of family literacy programs (FLPs) on the emergent literacy skills of children from low socioeconomic status families, as well as which program, sample, study, and measurement characteristics moderate program effects.

Although previous meta-analyses conclude that on average, FLPs’ effects are generally positive, they differ in their conclusions for low-SES families and other marginalized groups. So, drawing from previous meta-analyses of FLPs, the authors identified the following program characteristics or (potential) moderators to be analyzed: a) Content and nature (i.e., activity type -particularly, the distinction between formal and informal activities-, program focus -comprehension- and/or code-related skills-, possibilities for differentiation in program content and language, inclusion of other skills, combination with center-/school-based activities, and inclusion of digital materials); b) Organization and Delivery (i.e., setting -home and/or center…

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