Child care history and kindergarten adjustment.

Bates, J. E., Marvinney, D., Kelly, T., Dodge, K. A., Bennett, D. S., & Pettit, G. S. (1994). Child care history and kindergarten adjustment. Developmental Psychology, 30(5), 690–700.


Abstract: Parents gave histories of 589 children just before kindergarten. Children were later assessed with teacher, peer, and observer measures of social adjustment in school. Children with higher day-care amounts in each of 3 eras (0–4, and 4–5 yrs) scored higher on the composite negative adjustment and lower on positive adjustment (however, they also scored lower on teacher-rated internalizing problems). Day care predicted even after statistical control for measures representing alternative explanations, such as family stress and socioeconomic status, accounting for 2.7% of variance in negative adjustment and 2.9% of positive adjustment. Interactions between day care and other variables did not add to predictions of the molar adjustment composites. Extensive infancy care did not in itself predict adjustment, according to planned contrasts that controlled for total amount of day care received across the 3 eras of the child's life.