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Research explores ways to bolster early childhood numeracy skills

Keting Chen, human sciences doctoral student in the Department of Child, Youth and Family Studies, is exploring how home and childcare environments affect preschool-aged children’s numeracy skills — the ability to understand and work with numbers. Learn more in the CYFS Research Network.

For some young children, learning the basics of 1-2-3 can be easy as A-B-C.

But because early numeracy skills often receive less attention than early literacy skills, children who lag in number comprehension may fall behind academically in kindergarten and beyond. Full Article

Study aims to address time crunch among early childhood educators

Early childhood teachers’ non-contact time — time away from students in the classroom — enables them to address other work demands, such as building instruction plans, assessing children’s development and communicating with families. Learn more in the CYFS Research Network.

Much attention is paid to the work early childhood teachers do in the classroom. But their tasks away from their students are just as essential to children’s learning and development.

Unlike their K-12 counterparts, early childhood teachers lack dedicated time to address work demands beyond the direct care of children. Without formalized supports, out-of-classroom time may be scarified or interrupted as unexpected issues arise throughout the day. Full Article

SEEDs program promotes healing among women with past addiction, victimization

Current and former SEEDs participants develop job skills and enhance their work history while working at Cup O’Karma. Learn more in the CYFS Research Network.

The definition of “home” means different things to different people.

A comfy sofa. A warm bed. A cat lounging in the sun on the windowsill. Kids playing in the other room. An animated discussion of the day’s events during family mealtime.

For many, home is a sanctuary from busy schedules and hectic lives. But for women participating in the Support, Education, Empowerment and Directions (SEEDs) program, home can be a life-saver. Full Article

Project’s photos give voice to refugee population

A Yazidi woman shows off a large batch of naan, a round, flat, leavened bread. In keeping with cultural traditions, many women share freshly prepared naan with their neighbors, including Americans. (Photo courtesy of Zozan Bashar) Learn more in the CYFS Research Network.

In August 2014, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) attacked Sinjar Province in northwestern Iraq. About 5,000 Yazidi civilians were killed, and the genocide led to the expulsion of thousands more from their ancestral lands. Additionally, thousands of women and girls were abducted. Full Article

Research reveals children’s early adversity, neighborhood have lasting impacts

Data from a recent Nebraska study finds that early childhood experiences — particularly adverse events and activities, and neighborhood disadvantages — can generate long-term behavioral and social impacts. Learn more in the CYFS Research Network.

Where you come from plays a key role in predicting where you are going.

For children, the neighborhood in which they grow up significantly affects their healthy development in later years, according to findings from a recent University of Nebraska–Lincoln research project. Full Article

Building a strong foundation for cross-campus collaboration on executive function research

Members of the executive function collaboration infrastructure team include, from left, Jolene Johnson, Kathleen Gallagher, Carrie Clark, Kimia Akhavein, Anne Schutte, Jenna Finch, Danae Dinkel, Amanda Witte, Irina Patwardhan, Philip Lai and Marc Goodrich. Learn more in the CYFS Research Network.

Construction is underway on the foundation of a collaborative network of Nebraska researchers who are pooling their talent and resources to expand early childhood executive function research.

Carrie Clark, associate professor of educational psychology, and Jenna Finch, assistant professor of psychology, are leading the effort, thanks to funding from a University of Nebraska Collaboration Initiative Planning Grant. The initiative is designed to foster cross-campus research collaboration. Full Article

Research analyzes ‘Chinese virus’ rhetoric and its impact on Chinese and Asian Americans

A Nebraska research project is analyzing official U.S. government discourse regarding the coronavirus — such as use of the phrase “Chinese virus” — in a variety of news and social media sources, as well as public comments connected to those sources. Learn more in the CYFS Research Network.

When the coronavirus broke out in December 2019, the world changed. Phrases such as “sheltering at home,” “social distancing” and “self-quarantining” entered the lexicon and became part of an everyday, far-reaching “new normal.”

For some, life changed in additional ways. In the spring of 2020, reports of racism, hate crimes and even violence directed at Chinese and Asian Americans surged throughout the United States. Full Article

Interdisciplinary study leverages technology to assess preschool teachers’ resilience

Nebraska researchers are working on ways to better understand the processes that enable preschool teachers to remain healthy and resilient — and to contribute to the positive development of children in their care. Learn more in the CYFS Research Network.

In a typical preschool classroom with as many as two-dozen children, there are bound to be times of elevated stress for the teacher — and sometimes the students.

Along with meeting the needs of several children, teachers juggle many emotional and physical demands in their daily work, often with limited resources. Following an early childhood curriculum or philosophy, engaging families, maintaining a safe environment and dealing with interpersonal conflicts are just some of their daily classroom tasks. Full Article