Early Childhood Matters: Evidence from the Effective Pre-school and Primary Education Project, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Early Childhood Matters

Evidence from the Effective Pre-school and Primary Education Project, 1st Edition

Edited by Kathy Sylva, Edward Melhuish, Pam Sammons, Iram Siraj-Blatchford, Brenda Taggart


264 pages | 58 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9780415482431
pub: 2010-01-04
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pub: 2010-01-04
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pub: 2010-01-04
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Early Childhood Matters documents the rapid development of early years education and care from the late 1990s into the new millennium. It chronicles the unique contribution of the EPPE research to our understanding of the importance of pre-school.

The Effective Pre-school and Primary Education (EPPE) project is the largest European study of the impact of early years education and care on children’s developmental outcomes. Through this ground-breaking project a team of internationally-recognised experts provide insights into how home learning environments interact with pre-school and primary school experiences to shape children’s progress.

The findings of this fascinating project:

  • provide new evidence of the importance of early childhood experiences
  • show how these experiences influence children’s cognitive, social and behavioural development
  • give new insights on the importance of early years education
  • will be relevant to a wide audience who are interested in policy development, early years education and care, and ‘effectiveness’ research
  • examine how the combined effects of pre-school, primary school and the family interact to shape children’s educational outcomes.

This insightful book is essential reading for all those interested in innovative research methodology and policy development in early childhood education and care. It provides new evidence on good practice in early years settings and will have a wide appeal for students and those engaged in providing accredited courses of study at a range of levels in early childhood.


'It will be an excellent addition to your list. This is the most important research project we have ever had in the early years sector in the UK.' - Dame Gillian Pugh, Institute of Education, London

'I would expect this to be essential reading and therefore a main text for multidisciplinary programmes (eg Early Childhood Studies and Foundation Degrees in Early Years) which include both undergraduate and postgraduate courses, as well as initial and continuing professional qualifications (health, teaching, social work, family law etc). It will also be essential for research at postgraduate level in this field.' - Angela Nurse, Canterbury Christchurch

'This is likely to be a highly successful book, especially if the authors take the opportunity for critical and reflective engagement with the project.' - Liz Wood, University of Exeter

Table of Contents

Selected Contents: Chapter 1 Introduction: Why EPPE? Kathy Sylva and the EPPE Team Chapter 2 The EPPE settings in the context of English pre-schools Iram Siraj-Blatchford Chapter 3 The EPPE Research design: An educational effectiveness focus Pam Sammons Chapter 4 Why children, parents and home learning are important Edward Melhuish Chapter 5 Quality in Early Childhood settings Kathy Sylva Chapter 6 Does pre-school make a difference?: Results over the pre-school period (to aged 5) Pam Sammons Chapter 7 Do the benefits of pre-school last? Investigating pupil outcomes to the end of Key Stage 2 (aged 11) Pam Sammons Chapter 8 A focus on pedagogy: Case studies of effective practice Iram Siraj-Blatchford Chapter 9 Vulnerable children: Identifying children ‘at risk’ Brenda Taggart Chapter 10 A linked study: Effective Pre-school Provision in Northern Ireland Edward Melhuish Chapter 11 Making a difference: How research can inform policy Brenda Taggart Chapter 12 Re-thinking the evidence-base for Early Years policy and practice Kathy Sylva Glossary of terms Appendix 1 How children were assessed at different time points throughout the study Appendix 2 The Home Learning Environment at different time points Appendix 3 The EPPE Technical Papers Appendix 4 Social/behavioural dimensions at different time points (items associated with dimensions) Appendix 5 The Multiple Disadvantage Index Appendix 6 Results from analyses of pre-school effects compared with those of family income and parents’ employment status

About the Editors

Kathy Sylva is Professor of Educational Psychology, University of Oxford.

Edward Melhuish is Professor of Human Development, Birkbeck College, University of London.

Pam Sammons is Professor of Education, University of Oxford.

Iram Siraj-Blatchford is Professor of Education, Institute of Education, University of London.

Brenda Taggart is Senior Research Officer, Institute of Education, University of London.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Elementary
EDUCATION / Preschool & Kindergarten