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Social and academic school adjustment during early elementary school

Authors
Publisher
Purdue University
Publication Date
Keywords
  • Education
  • Early Childhood|Education
  • Elementary|Psychology
  • Developmental
Disciplines
  • Economics

Abstract

This study examines relationships amongst proposed components of school adjustment in third grade, including academic achievement, peer competence, teacher-child relationships, school liking, and classroom behavior. Also examined was the association between social adjustment (peer competence, teacher-child relationships, school liking, classroom behavior) and academic adjustment (achievement, school liking). Finally, second grade and third grade predictors of school adjustment in third grade were examined. ^ Children were studied from second through third grade in one school district in a small upper Midwestern community. Participants were 186 children and 11 teachers in second grade and 188 children and 11 teachers in third grade. Data were drawn from teacher ratings, child interviews, and parent questionnaires. ^ Principal components analysis revealed that third grade school adjustment is comprised of both social adjustment and academic adjustment, and that social adjustment is further comprised of peer competence, teacher-child relationships, and classroom behavior, while academic adjustment is comprised of academic achievement. A second analysis with a subsample suggested that school liking may be a third, separate aspect of school adjustment. Social and academic adjustment were interrelated. There was a high degree of continuity in academic achievement from second to third grade. There was moderate continuity in peer competence and teacher-child relationships. Teacher-child relationships and academic achievement in second grade are important predictors of both social and academic adjustment in third grade. During third grade, teacher-reported parental involvement and family socio-economic status were also consistent predictors of both social and academic school adjustment. These results suggest that school adjustment in third grade is multidimensional and transactional in nature. Social and academic adjustment processes during second grade predict both social and academic adjustment in third grade. ^

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