Caregiving across Contexts: Exploring Children’s Development and Caregiving at the Intersection of Home, School, and Neighborhood Settings


This dissertation examines caregiving contexts in early childhood. Specifically, I look at how caregiving contexts are related to or influenced by other caregiving contexts and broader social contexts. The dissertation is composed of an introductory chapter that provides a theoretical overview and summary of the dissertation followed by two additional empirical chapters. The second chapter, and first empirical chapter, examines how sensitivity and responsivity from caregivers in multiple contexts, home and early childhood care and education, cluster in a low-income sample. This study then uses profiles of harshness and responsivity across contexts to predict developmental outcomes through age 9. The third chapter seeks to understand the impact of deviations in community violent crime from average levels of violent crime on preschool teaching quality. Both empirical chapters use data from predominately children from minoritized racial and ethnic identities living in low-income contexts. This allowed for the exploration of variation in experiences within these communities, rather than comparisons with more privileged contexts. Together, this dissertation highlights the myriad of protective factors that exist in low-income contexts.

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