Background Home-based child care is a widely-used form of child care. However, given its prevalence, there is little research examining the providers' instructional practices and how these may vary by provider characteristics. Objective The goal of this study is to describe variation in instructional practices among home-based child care providers and to examine predictors of instructional practices, including provider, program, and community characteristics. Methods This study examines the instructional practices of listed and unlisted paid home-based child care providers using data from the National Survey of Early Care and Education through descriptive analyses and hierarchical multiple regression. Results Descriptive analyses suggest that providers across types report implementing learning activities, although this is more prevalent among listed providers. Results of a hierarchical multiple regression reveal that recent professional engagement predicts a higher frequency of planned learning activities for listed and unlisted paid providers, although the significant predictors are different for the two groups of providers. Conclusions Home-based child care providers vary by provider type in the frequency of their instructional practices. Increasing access to professional development and social support opportunities may be an important strategy for supporting their implementation of educational activities with the children they serve. Additionally, different supports may be beneficial for listed and unlisted paid providers. (author abstract)
Predictors of instructional practices among a nationally representative sample of home-based child care providers
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