According to a Harvard report, parents felt highly that the pandemic had a negative impact on their child’s academic and social development, and even children were more prone to tantrums and sadness.
Stephanie Jones, professor of early childhood development at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and co-director of the Early Learning Study, said, “It’s not just their academic outcomes that are affecting, it’s actually their social and emotional outcomes that are affecting are.” at Harvard.
latest report The Early Learning Study at Harvard, released Tuesday, shows that 58% of parents surveyed reported that their child’s academic development was negatively affected by the pandemic, and 61% reported negative socio-emotional effects was.
“This is an area to take really seriously and spend some time with because if we don’t, we’re probably not going to have the kind of academic recovery that we think,” Jones told the Herald.
The data comes from two online surveys conducted for parents and teachers in late 2020 and early 2021. In all, 1,343 parents took part in the survey at Harvard as part of the larger Early Learning Study.
Even children between the ages of 3 and 4 experienced negative behavioral changes related to the pandemic, their teachers observed.
More than half of childhood teachers reported changes in children’s behavior, and 77% said they were negative changes.
Teachers reported an increase in temper tantrums, sadness, crying and a regression in self-help skills.
The data also shows that children in other age groups picked up on pandemic habits and concerns, as per the teacher’s report.
More than 75% of teachers said students talked about germs, 70% said children commented on safety measures such as wearing masks and 56% of teachers said children expressed grief by not seeing friends or family .
Jones said that if young students do not feel supported with a web of tight connections, they cannot turn their attention to core academics. Therefore, there is a need for an acute focus on socio-emotional health as students approach another transition to school in the fall.
“We know what to do, we know how to do it, I’m not sure we’re always working on that knowledge and now would be a good time to take it seriously and put some strategies into practice What we know is effective,” Jones said.
According to Jones, some very basic emotional support such as taking the time to ask children how they are feeling or engaging in a circle of emotions can be helpful.
Jones said he and his team plan to continue tracking families for the rest of the summer and into the fall as a “critical” transition to return to school.