After reading the other thread on genetic facts & fallacies, I thought some here might be interested on the coventional wisdom associated with parenting and childhood development.
This is taken from the book Freakonomics by Steven Levitt, an economist at the University of Chicago. It's a top read; a different take on what most generally associate with economics.
Levitt examines the results of a study conducted by the U.S. Department of Education in the late 1990's which looked at background influences on early school performance of over 20,000 children.
Below are sixteen factors, of which eight show a strong positive or negative correlation with test scores. The other eight do not exibit a relationship.
- The child has highly educated parents.
- The child's family is intact.
- The child's parents have high socioeconomic status.
- The child's parents recently moved into a better neighbourhood.
- The child's mother was thirty or older at the time of her first child's birth.
- The child's mother didn't work between birth and kindergarten.
- The child had low birthweight.
- The child's parents speak English in the home.
- The child's parents reguarly take him to museums.
- The child is adopted.
- The child is reguarly spanked.
- The child frequently watches television.
- The child has many books in his home.
- The child's parents read to him nearly every day.
Have a punt and I'll post the answers tonight.