Population Matters

Population Matters: Reducing inequality with early childhood development

A family's language and economic circumstances affect early childhood development. A study aims to tease out just how.

Experiences early in life have profound and enduring influences on an individual's developing brain, social behaviour and health. A family's economic resources shape the nature of many of these experiences - yet, the extent to which they affect children's development remains debated among scholars. Although a child's learning in the early years occurs mostly at home, daycare, community and government support also matter. As the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child.

A study which my centre is about to begin aims to shed more light on this. The National University of Singapore's Centre for Family and Population Research is launching a national study this month to learn about how Singaporean young children are developing.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 18, 2018, with the headline 'Reducing inequality with early childhood development'. Print Edition | Subscribe