Differences in Children’s Social Development: How Migration Background Impacts the Effect of Early Institutional Childcare Upon Children’s Prosocial Behavior and Peer Problems

Faculty/Professorship: Developmental Psychology  ; Early Childhood Education and Care 
Author(s): Konrad-Ristau, Kira  ; Burghardt, Lars  
Title of the Journal: Frontiers in Psychology
ISSN: 1664-1078
Corporate Body: Frontiers Research Foundation
Publisher Information: Lausanne
Year of publication: 2021
Volume: 12
Issue: 16 February 2021
Pages: 1-15
Language(s): English
DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.614844
This article focuses on the early years of children from immigrant families in Germany. Research has documented disparities in young children’s development correlating with their family background (e.g., immigrant or ethnic minority status), making clear the importance of early intervention. Institutional childcare—as an early intervention for children at risk—plays an important role in Germany, as 34.3% of children below the age of three and 93% of children above that age are in external childcare. This paper focuses on the extent to which children from families with a background of migration differ in their social development when considering their age of entry into early external childcare (and thus its duration). Data from the infant cohort study of the German National Educational Panel Study (NEPS, N = 1,846) is used to analyze the impact of early institutional childcare before the age of 3 years on children’s social competence at the age of 5 years, controlling for gender, siblings, temperament, home learning activities, and socioeconomic status. Results show the effects of duration of early external childcare on peer problems for children from families with a background of migration, in such a way that children who attend early external childcare for more than 1 year before the age of three show less problem behavior with peers than those who attend for less than a year. These findings have equity implications for children with a migration background living in Germany, especially as the proportion of these children is trending upwards.
GND Keywords: Deutschland; Kleinkind; Migrationshintergrund; Kindergarten; Dauer; Soziales Lernen; Entwicklungspsychologie; Sozialisation
Keywords: migration background, early childhood education and care (ECEC), children’s social development, disadvantaged children, prosocial behavior, peer problems, childcare
DDC Classification: 370 Education  
150 Psychology  
RVK Classification: CQ 5100   
Peer Reviewed: Ja
International Distribution: Ja
Open Access Journal: Ja
Type: Article
URI: https://fis.uni-bamberg.de/handle/uniba/49506
Release Date: 17. February 2021
Project: Impact of early childcare arrangements and the home-learning environment on child development (ViVAplus)