top of page
RB5 logo.JPG

Birth to Eight Annotated Bibliographies

Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D. 

The following annotated bibliographies are a compilation of more than 1,700 articles related to early language development, early care and education, school readiness, and early grade reading. The majority of these citations are from peer-reviewed journal articles and research institute reports.  We have augmented the academic research with a limited inclusion of non-scientific articles. 

  1. Early Language (age 0-3)

  2. Emergent Literacy (age 3-5)

  3. Early Grade Reading

  4. Early Care and Education Policy and Planning

  5. School Readiness

  6. Pre-Kindergarten 

  7. PK-3rd Grade Strategy

  8. Child Care and Head Start

  9. Early Care and Education Quality

  10. Families

  11. Child Development

  12. Child Abuse and Neglect

  13. Home Visiting

  14. Risk Factors

  15. Out of School Time

  16. Absenteeism

  17. Mobility

  18. Segregation

Note:  These documents must be individually downloaded to access. 

Early Language - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #1
Sample Citation:

Baczewski, L. M. (2015). The Language Development of Children of Adolescent Mothers: An Investigation of Factors that Promote Resilient Functioning. Tufts University.

            The present study examined the language trajectories of a sample of children of adolescent mothers over the course of two years. At ∼ 24 months old, children scored below average on a measure of language skills. At ∼ 48 months, children scored within the average range, suggesting a trend towards positive language development. Early language scores significantly predicted later scores. Children scoring lowest at 24 months old were predicted to score 10 points lower than their high scoring counterparts at 48 months.

Three moderators of language delay were investigated, yielding nonsignificant results: (1) maternal sensitivity, (2) participation in Early Intervention, and (3) participation in the Healthy Families Massachusetts home visiting program. Power to detect significant moderation effects was limited by sample size and child age range. Results of this study support early intervention and highlight the current trend in language intervention towards increasingly individualized and population-specific programs.

Emergent Literacy - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #2

Sample Citation:

Bailet, L. L. (2009). "Emergent Literacy Intervention for Prekindergarteners at Risk for Reading Failure." Journal of Learning Disabilities 42(4): 336-355.

            This study examined the effectiveness of an assessment and intervention study targeting prekindergarten children at risk for reading failure. Across 38 child care sites, 220 children were identified as “at risk” for reading failure due to their performance on a screening measure of early literacy skills and randomly assigned to receive immediate or delayed intervention. The intervention consisted of eighteen 30-minute lessons delivered twice weekly for 9 weeks and focused on teaching critical emergent literacy skills within small groups.

Hierarchical linear models were used to nest children within center and measure treatment and dosage effects for students' residualized gains in rhyming, alliteration, picture naming, and print and letter knowledge skills. Results indicated significant treatment effects on two of four outcome variables (rhyming and alliteration) and significant dosage effects on all four variables. The study demonstrated a significant positive impact of this intervention for prekindergartners at risk for reading failure.

Early Grade Reading - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #3

Sample Citation:

Allington, R. (2011). "What At-Risk Readers Need." Educational Leadership 68(6): 40-45.

            We could teach almost every student to read by the end of 1st grade. So why aren't we doing it?  Few students in the United States read at a desirable level. According to National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) scores, roughly one-third of U.S. students read at or above the proficient level, one-third read at the basic level, and one-third read at the below basic level (Rampey, Dion, & Donahue, 2009). In other words, two of every three students in U.S. schools have reading proficiencies below the level needed to adequately do grade-level work.  At the same time, studies have shown that virtually every student could be reading on grade level by the end of 1st grade (Mathes et al., 2005; Phillips & Smith, 2010; Scanlon, Gelzheiser, Vellutino, Schatschneider, & Sweeney, 2010; Vellutino, Scanlon, Sipay, et al., 1996) and that the cost of achieving this goal is substantially less than the current system of remediation, special education, and grade retention. This raises the question, Why are so few schools doing what they need to do to help their at-risk readers?

ECE Policy and Planning - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #4
Sample Citation:

Accountability, F. f. E. R. a. (2013). A New Approach to Educational Equity in New York: Suing for School-Choice Scholarships to Free Students from Failing Schools. Clifton Park, NY, Foundation for Education Reform and Accountability: 44.

            The failure of New York’s large urban school districts to significantly improve the academic outcomes of low-income and minority students, coupled with the willingness of the state courts to hear cases examining New York’s constitutional guarantee to a “sound, basic education,” provide a prime opportunity for lawsuits seeking court-ordered school-choice scholarships in Buffalo and Rochester, according to a new report from the Foundation for Education Reform & Accountability. New York could improve educational outcomes without relying on further increasing state education funding – the primary focus of previous and current educational equity lawsuits in the state.  Rather, the report outlines, the courts could order students trapped in failing schools to be provided with publicly-funded school-choice scholarships that allow them to transfer to better performing private and public schools of their choice.

School Readiness - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #5
Sample Citation: 

Amsden, D. J., et al. (2010). Children Who Entered Public School Kindergarten in Delaware in the Fall of 2009. Newark, DE, University of Delaware.

            The Delaware Department of Education contracted with the University of Delaware to conduct a survey of the parents of children entering Delaware public and charter school kindergartens in the fall of 2009, collect the Child Find assessment information on the entering students, and to request that kindergarten teachers complete a Kindergarten Readiness Checklist. 

This analysis examines the information collected from parents, the Child Find developmental assessment, and the Kindergarten Readiness Checklist. The report provides a description of the experience of students who entered Delaware‟s kindergarten in the fall of 2009; including where children spent their time before entering kindergarten, the types of activities adults and children do together, early childhood experiences this cohort of children has had, skills children had as they entered kindergarten as reported through the Child Find assessment administered by school districts prior to children entering kindergarten, teachers‟ perceptions of children‟s readiness for kindergarten as measured by a Kindergarten Readiness Checklist completed by students‟ kindergarten teacher.

Pre-Kindergarten - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #6
Sample Citation:

Bogard, K., et al. (2008). "Teacher education and PK outcomes: Are we asking the right questions?" Early Childhood Research Quarterly 23(1): 1-6.

            Recent studies do not find consistent relationships between teacher degree, major, and certification, and PK outcomes (Early, D. M., Bryant, D. M., Pianta, R. C., Clifford, R. M., Burchinal, M. R., Ritchie, S., et al. (2006). Are teachers’ education, major, and credentials related to classroom quality and children's academic gains in pre-kindergarten? Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 21, 174–195; Early, D. M., Maxwell, K. L., Burchinal, M., Bender, R. H., Ebanks, C., Henry, G. T., et al. (2007). Teachers’ education, classroom quality, and young children's academic skills: Results from seven studies of preschool programs. Child Development, 78, 558–580), raising questions about the impact of the degrees and certifications of PK teachers on children's learning.

The researchers note that these findings do not support the conclusion that teacher education does not matter for children's learning. However, they do not provide specific directions for policymakers who decide on the minimum requirements for teacher qualifications in PK programs. This commentary raises issues for researchers and policymakers about whether PK is part of a K-12 educational continuum, how teachers are prepared to teach, how research is designed to inform policy, and the importance of developmental science in policy-relevant education research. As part of a future PK-16 education system, we propose that the BA be the entry requirement for PK as it is for K-12 teachers, followed by professional education combined with extensive classroom experiences.

Pre-K to 3rd Grade Strategy - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #7

Sample Citation:

Atchison, B. (2016). K-3 Policymakers' Guide to Action: Making the Early Years Count, Education Commission of the States.

            Of the 2.5 million students who dropped out of high school in 2015, 1.6 million were firmly set on that trajectory when they were just 8 years old.  What did those 8-year-old students have in common? They received the lowest reading scores on the third-grade literacy exam. A student’s ability to meet grade-level expectations in third grade plays a significant role in the likelihood of them graduating high school. A third-grade student who reads proficiently is four times more likely to graduate from high school than a third grader reading below grade level.  The preschool through third-grade years are foundational in a child’s journey towards lifelong learning. Developmentally, these early elementary years are when children best acquire the academic and non-academic skills on which long-lasting educational success depends. As a result, experts argue that meaningful improvements in student academic outcomes, increases in graduation rates and the success of students later in life depend on improving the quality of the educational foundation provided by a quality kindergarten through third-grade (K-3) continuum.

Child Care, Early Head Start, Head Start 
Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #8

Sample Citation:

Akhtar, S. and S. Antos (2010). Mending the Patchwork: A report examining county by county inequities in child care subsidy administration in New York State. Albany, NY, Empire Justice Center: 44.

            The report explores the variations among districts and illustrates the disparity that local control creates for both parents and providers. The disparities are discussed in narrative form and in charts that provide a statewide overview in the attached appendices.  Appendix A is a summary chart of the 14 variables that are analyzed in this report, including co-payment multipliers and other eligibility and payment rules for each of the state’s 58 social services districts.  The narrative discussion of the disparities explains how both child care providers and parents receiving subsidies are subject to different rules, expectations, and costs.

Child Care Quality - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #9

Sample Citation:

Bryant, D. (2010). Observational Measures of Quality in Center-Based Early Care and Education Programs. Washington, DC, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: 16.

            Classroom observation measures that were originally developed and refined for early childhood research purposes are increasingly being used in state Quality Rating Systems (QRS), child care licensing, tiered reimbursement, and professional development. Understanding the characteristics and predictive power of these measures is critical to correctly interpreting and using the data that they produce. this brief reviews several widely used assessments and their relation to each other and to child outcomes. Particular attention is given to purposes for assessment, psychometric properties, inter-rater reliability, applicability of measures across ages, and content and cross-cultural validity. While several classroom observation methods have been shown to predict later child outcomes, classroom features and experiences still account for far less of child variability than family characteristics do. However, despite the modest sizes of the associations between child care quality and child outcomes, quality measures do consistently and significantly confirm these links; further development of quality measurement tools is warranted.

Families- Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #10

Sample Citation:

Allgood, W. C. (2005). Zones of influence: Family, school and community initiatives to address the achievement gap. United States -- Tennessee, Vanderbilt University.

            This research seeks to understand sources and implications and distill potential solutions to the long-standing problem of the race- and income-based achievement gap. It is a multi-disciplinary, multi-level integrative literature review that begins with a survey of conventional explanations for the gap based on conventional indicators of systematic variations in student outcomes and proceeds through a review of family, school, community, state and national influences on educational outcomes and outcome variations.

The findings of are synthesized into a comprehensive understanding of the gap and coordinated strategies for addressing it. A descriptive model of the Cycle of Advantage leading to and sustaining the achievement gap is presented, as is a model of the gap's Zones of Influence, or areas where capital access and environmental conditions variously influence cognitive development.

The gap is found to be largely a group phenomenon sustained by socio-cultural influences related to the historic marginalization of these groups as well as the fact that past efforts to facilitate group assimilation and adaptation and ensure equality of opportunity have been insufficient relative to their needs and demographic, economic, technological and educational trends and demands. The gap is exacerbated by concentrated poverty at the school and community levels as well as over-dependency on public aid and service delivery among poor families and communities. It is observable before, throughout and at the close of formal schooling, with little evidence that schools currently have, or as they are currently structured might ever have, the capacity to close the gap.

Targeted efforts in high-poverty, urban communities to provide poor and minority families enhanced access to adequate health care and housing, safe neighborhoods, early childhood education, and parenting education are empirically suggested to be the key leverage points for closing the gap. Efforts to attract private investment to these communities are suggested, as are efforts to experiment with different modes of investment, administration and service delivery in traditionally public sector domains. The federal government will need to take the lead in establishing a coherent vision, setting parameters and priorities for coordinated action, recommending and providing incentives for action, and providing for monitoring and evaluation.

Child Development - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #11

Sample Citation:

Authors, M. (2011). Special Issue on Early Childhood Education. Science Magazine. 333 no. 6045.

            Special Issue on Early Childhood Education.  Protecting Brains, Not Simply Stimulating Minds; Teacher's Language Practices and Academic Outcomes of Preschool Children; Laying the Foundation for Lifetime Learning; Past Successes Shape Effort to Expand Early Intervention; Giving Children a Head Start if Possible - But It's Not Easy; A Passion for Early Education; Interventions Shown to Aid Executive Function Development in Children 4 to 12 Years Old; Effectiveness of Early Educational Intervention, From Science to Policy in Early Childhood Education

Child Abuse and Neglect - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #12

Sample Citation:

(CDC), C. f. D. C. (2016). Preventing Child Abuse and Neglect: A Technical Package for Policy, Norm, and Programmatic Activities, CDC National Center for Injury Prevention and Control Division of Violence Prevention.

            This technical package represents a select group of strategies based on the best available evidence to help prevent child abuse and neglect. These strategies include strengthening economic supports to families; changing social norms to support parents and positive parenting; providing quality care and education early in life; enhancing parenting skills to promote healthy child development; and intervening to lessen harms and prevent future risk. The strategies represented in this package include those with a focus on preventing child abuse and neglect from happening in the first place as well as approaches to lessen the immediate and long-term harms of child abuse and neglect. These strategies range from a focus on individuals, families, and relationships to broader community and societal change. This range of strategies is needed to better address the interplay between individual-family behavior and broader neighborhood, community, and cultural contexts.

Home Visiting - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #13

Sample Citation:

Mathis, E. T. B. and K. L. Bierman (2015). "Effects of parent and child pre-intervention characteristics on child skill acquisition during a school readiness intervention." Early Childhood Research Quarterly 33: 87-97.

            Two-hundred preschool children in Head Start (55% girls; 20% Hispanic, 25% African-American, 55% European American; M age = 4.80 years old) participated in a randomized-controlled trial of a home visiting intervention designed to promote emergent literacy skills (the Research-based Developmentally Informed parent [REDI-P] program). This study explored concurrent changes in levels of parent support and child literacy skills that occurred over the course of the intervention, and examined the impact of pre-intervention parent support and child literacy skills as potential moderators of parent and child outcomes. Cross-lagged structural equation models and follow-up analyses indicated that intervention had the strongest impact on child literacy skills when parents were high on support at the pre-intervention assessment. Conversely, the REDI-Parent program promoted the greatest gains in parent support when parents entered the program with low levels of support. These findings suggest that families may benefit from home visiting school readiness interventions in different ways: child skill acquisition may be greatest when parents are initially high in support, whereas parenting may improve most when parents are initially low in support.

Post #14
Risk Factors - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.

Sample Citation:

Alexander, K. L., et al. (1997). "From First Grade Forward: Early Foundations of High School Dropout." Sociology of Education 70(2): 87-107.

            In tracking the educational progress of a sample of Baltimore school-children from entrance into first grade in fall 1982 through early spring 1996, the authors examined the children's personal qualities, first-grade experiences, and family circumstances as precursors to high school dropout. Logistic regression analyses were used to identify predictors of dropout involving family context measures (stressful family changes, parents' attitudes, and parents' socialization practices), children's personal resources (attitudes and behaviors), and school experiences (test scores, marks, and track placements). These various measures were found to influence dropout independently of sociodemographic factors and account for much of the difference in the odds of dropout associated with family socioeconomic status, gender, family type, and other "risk factors." The authors take a life-course perspective on dropout, viewing it as the culmination of a long-term process of academic disengagement.

Post #15
 Out-of School Time Learning - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.

Sample Citation:

Augustine, C. H., et al. (2013). Getting to Work on Summer Learning: Recommended Practices for Success. Santa Monica, CA, RAND: 89.

            Research shows low-income students suffer disproportionate learning loss over the summer and because those losses accumulate over time, they contribute substantially to the achievement gap between low- and higher-income children. The Wallace Foundation is funding a five-year demonstration project to examine whether summer learning programs can reduce summer learning loss and promote achievement gains. This report, the second in a series, draws on emerging lessons from six school districts in the study — Boston, Cincinnati, Dallas, Duval County (Florida), Pittsburgh, and Rochester (New York) — that offer full-day programs for five to six weeks free of charge to large numbers of elementary students.

The report synthesizes the key lessons learned about how to establish and sustain effective programs. The most emphatic recommendation is to start planning early, no later than January, and include both district and summer site leaders in the process. Many problems identified by the researchers — from weak teacher training to ineffective transportation — could be traced to a rushed planning process. Other guidance includes adopting a commercially available curriculum, establishing enrollment deadlines, ensuring sufficient time on academics, and selecting enrichment providers with qualified staff experienced in behavior management. To manage costs, the authors suggest designing the program with costs in mind — by hiring staff based on projected daily attendance rather than number of enrollees, for example, and by restricting the number of sites to control administrative costs.

School Absence Risk Factor - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #16
Sample Citation

Chang, H. N. and M. Romero (2008). Present, Engaged, and Accounted For: The Critical Importance of Addressing Chronic Absence in the Early Grades. New York City, Columbia University, National Center for Children in Poverty: 31.

            At the core of school improvement and education reform is an assumption so widely understood that it is rarely invoked: students have to be present and engaged in order to learn. That is why the discovery that thousands of our youngest students are at academically at-risk because of extended absences when they first embark upon their school careers is as remarkable as it is consequential. The educational experiences of children who attend school regularly can be diminished when teachers must divert their attention to meet the learning and social needs of children who miss substantial amounts of school. 

Although chronic early absence can be a significant issue for entire school districts and particular elementary schools, it has largely been overlooked. The United States does not have a mechanism in place to ensure that schools across the country monitor and report on levels of chronic early absence. Elementary schools often track average daily attendance or unexcused absences (truancy)1, but few monitor the combination of excused and unexcused absence for individual students. High overall school-wide attendance rates can easily mask significant numbers of chronically absent students. While a growing interest in state data systems with universal student identifiers creates an opportunity to collect such data systematically, many districts have yet to develop the capacity for tracking absences for individual students. As a result, many school districts do not know the extent to which chronic early absence is a problem in any or all of their schools.

Student Mobility Risk Factor - Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #17

Sample Citation:

Alexander, K. L., et al. (1996). "Children in motion: School transfers and elementary school performance." Journal of Educational Research 90(1): 3-12.

            Moves from one school to another are a common, yet generally neglected, challenge to children's orderly school adjustment over the beginning-school transition. School transfers were traced through the first 5 years of elementary school for a large, diverse sample of children who began first grade in the fall of 1982 in 20 Baltimore City public schools. School moves were patterned along racial-ethnic and socioeconomic lines. Advantaged youngsters more often transferred outside the city school system, whereas disadvantaged youngsters more often transferred within it. Evidence on the consequences of moves for children's school performance is mixed. After 5 years in school, children who moved had lower test scores and marks, had an elevated risk of retention, and were more likely to receive special education services; but most of those differences fell short of significance when controls were introduced for first-grade measures of school performance and for background characteristics. The analysis thus provides only weak support for the hypothesis that school moves compromise children's school performance, but other important areas of concern have yet to be examined adequately, including, especially, the home or family circumstances that prompt students to move.

Segregation and Neighborhood Impacts
 Annotated Bibliography
Rosalind Kotz, Ph.D.
Post #18

Sample Citation:

Aaronson, D. (1998). "Using Sibling Data to Estimate the Impact of Neighborhoods on Children's Educational Outcomes." The Journal of Human Resources 33(4): 915-946.

            Studies that attempt to measure the impact of neighborhoods on children's outcomes are susceptible to bias because families choose where to live. As a result, the effect of family unobservables, such as the importance parents place on their children's welfare, and other unobservables that are common to geographically clustered households, may be mistakenly attributed to neighborhood influences. Previous studies that attempt to correct for this selection bias have used questionable instrumental variables.

This paper introduces an approach based on the observation that the latent factors associated with neighborhood choice do not vary across siblings. Therefore, family residential changes provide a source of neighborhood background variation that is free of the family-specific heterogeneity biases associated with neighborhood selection. Using a sample of multichild families whose children are separated in age by at least three years, I estimate family fixed effect equations of children's educational outcomes. The fixed effect results suggest that the impact of neighborhoods may exist even when family-specific unobservables are controlled. This finding is robust to many changes to estimation techniques, outcome measures, variable definitions, and samples but is sensitive to the exact formulation of the neighborhood measure.

bottom of page