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New study reveals 2-year-olds with better vocabularies are more prepared for kindergarten

Just how important is learning vocabulary for young children? A new study published in Child Development by researchers from major universities sought to find out the answer to this very question. PychCentral reports that this team of researchers discovered over the course of their study that by the age of 2, toddlers with more expansive vocabularies were more prepared once they reached kindergarten. They were found to be more academically and socially prepared.

In the study, the researchers looked at data from 8,650 children across the country, where their vocabularies were analyzed both by their academic development in kindergarten and a parent survey. The children's teachers also measured the kindergartners' behavior. 

Children of a variety of backgrounds were studied to have a more well-rounded survey pool. Throughout the study, it was discovered that children who came from families of a higher economic status, those who had more involved parents and those who were female were all shown to have a more vast vocabulary than children who did not meet those qualifications. This vocabulary gap became more noticeable over the following years, when the researchers examined the same subjects once they reached kindergarten.

It was during the course of this study that the researchers uncovered the correlation between children having a bigger vocabulary at 2 years of age and being ready for the social and academic rigor of kindergarten. All those with better vocabularies when they were 2 displayed obvious skills in math and reading, along with being less prone to classroom behavioral issues.

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