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This document evaluates a series of weekly activity guides developed for families of at-risk preschool children. The purpose of the guides was to increase communication between teachers and families, the amount of time families spent with their children on developmentally appropriate learning activities, and parental understanding of developmentally appropriate curriculum and activities. Ten schools in five rural Kentucky school districts participated in the field study. Response rates were 43.3% on the first administration of the parent reaction form and 54.9% six weeks later on the second administration. Results indicate: (1) parents viewed the guides as interesting, helpful, easy to read, and informative; (2) the majority of parents read aloud sections of the guide to their children; (3) parents reported using the developmental learning activities in the guide once or twice a week; (4) the average amount of time families spent using the guides slightly increased over time; (5) parents' overall reactions included the opinion that the guide was interesting and fun for children; (6) the majority of parents expressed a desire to continue receiving the weekly guides; and (7) more than half the respondents indicated a willingness to speak with someone involved with the project about the guides. Thirteen teachers and their aides completed questionnaires monthly during the 3-month field testing of the guides. Results indicate that the program increased communication between parents and teachers and promoted parental involvement. This document includes results of pilot testing of prototype issues and evaluation of Family Connections workshops. It also includes 13 numerous data tables and 6 figures. (LP)

Descriptors: Child Development, High Risk Students, Parent Education, Parent Materials, Parent Participation, Parent Teacher Cooperation, Parents as Teachers, Preschool Curriculum, Preschool Education, Program Evaluation, Rural Education

Autor: Childers, Robert D.; Penn, Patricia


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