Now a new study of children living in institutions has found that intervening early can help young children develop language, with those placed in better care by 15 months showing language skills similar to children raised by their biological parents.
The study, in the journal Child Development, was conducted by researchers at the University of Minnesota, Ohio University, The Ohio State University, the University of Virginia, Harvard Medical School and Children's Hospital Boston, the University of Maryland, and Tulane University.
Researchers studied more than 100 children who were part of the Bucharest Early Intervention Project, a longitudinal study of institutional and foster care in Romania. Historically, institutions there have provided very limited opportunities for language and social interaction among children. In this study, about half of the children were placed in foster homes at about 22 months, while the other half continued living in institutions. About 60 typically developing children who lived with their biological families in the same communities served as a comparison group.
"Because institutional care was the norm for these children, it was possible to create a natural experiment, comparing those in institutional care with those placed in foster care," according to lead author Jennifer Windsor, professor of speech-language-hearing sciences at the University of Minnesota.
The study found that children who were placed in foster care before they turned 2 had substantially greater language skills at age 3-1/2 than children who stayed in institutional care, with those placed by 15 months showing language skills similar to the comparison group. In contrast, children placed in foster care after they turned 2 had the same severe language delays as those who stayed in institutional care.
"This shows that not only is the change to high-quality foster care beneficial for these children, but the timing of the change appears to be important," according to Windsor.
The findings highlight the importance of intervening early to help young children develop language. They also provide insights for parents who adopt internationally. "Many infants and toddlers who are adopted from other countries and come to the United States develop language quickly," Windsor notes. "However, older children who have been living in poor care environments may be at high risk for language delays."
Sarah Hutcheon | EurekAlert!
New study from the University of Halle: How climate change alters plant growth
12.01.2018 | Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg
Disarray in the brain
18.12.2017 | Universität zu Lübeck
What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...
For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.
Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...
At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.
No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.
Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...
The oceans are the largest global heat reservoir. As a result of man-made global warming, the temperature in the global climate system increases; around 90% of...
08.01.2018 | Event News
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
16.01.2018 | Materials Sciences
16.01.2018 | Materials Sciences
16.01.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering