Why Do Preschool Language Abilities Correlate With Later Reading? A Twin Study

Harlaar, Nicole; Hayiou-Thomas, Marianna E.; Dale, Philip S.; Plomin, Robert
June 2008
Journal of Speech, Language & Hearing Research;Jun2008, Vol. 51 Issue 3, p688
Academic Journal
Purpose: Language acquisition is predictive of successful reading development, but the nature of this link is poorly understood. Method: A sample of 7,179 twin pairs was assessed on parent-report measures of syntax and vocabulary at ages 2, 3, and 4 years and on teacher assessments of reading achievement (RA) at ages 7, 9, and 10 years. These measures were used to construct latent factors of early language ability (LA) and RA in structural equation model-fitting analyses. Results: The phenotypic correlation between LA and RA (r = .40) was primarily due to shared environmental influences that contribute to familial resemblance. These environmental influences on LA and RA overlapped substantially (rC = .62). Genetic influences made a significant but smaller contribution to the phenotypic correlation between LA and RA, and showed moderate overlap (rA = .36). There was also evidence for a direct causal influence of LA on RA. Conclusions: The association between early language and later reading is underpinned by common environmental and genetic influences. The effects of some risk factors on RA may be mediated by language. The results provide a foundation for more fine-grained studies that examine links between specific measures of language, reading, genes, and environments.


Related Articles

  • Tips to help your child become a successful reader.  // New York Amsterdam News;8/30/2001, Vol. 92 Issue 35, p18 

    Provides tips to assist children reading skills formation offered by the Partnership for Family Involvement in Education in the United States. Role of family in reading skill development; Campaigns of the Department of Education for reading habit development; Assistance given to families...

  • Decálogo para una familia comprometida con la lectura. Cabrero, Mariano Coronas // Boletin de la Asociacion Andaluza de Bibliotecarios;jun2009, Vol. 24 Issue 96/97, p178 

    No abstract available.

  • Parental involvement in deaf children's education programs as a predictor of child's language, early reading, and social-emotional development. Calderon, R; Calderon, Rosemary // Journal of Deaf Studies & Deaf Education;Spring2000, Vol. 5 Issue 2 

    This study examined the impact of school-based, teacher-rated parental involvement on four child outcomes: language development, early reading skills, and positive and negative measures of social-emotional development. The 28 children were assessed for outcomes between 9 to 53 months...

  • "WWC Intervention Report: Shared Book Reading". S. D. S. // Education Week;4/22/2015, Vol. 34 Issue 28, p5 

    The article provides information also available on the periodical's website regarding the report "WWC Intervention Report: Shared Book Reading," which featured research by the U.S. federal What Works Clearinghouse program into the effectiveness of parent-child reading sessions.

  • Readicide--Killing the Love of Reading in Our Schools. Clark, Ruth Cox // Knowledge Quest;Mar/Apr2011, Vol. 39 Issue 4, p6 

    The author reflects on the discouragement for the love of reading in schools. It discusses how educators and parents affect a child's literary appreciation, noting the importance of letting the child experience unconscious enjoyment in reading both in fiction and nonfiction books. She comments...

  • Using Reading Hangtags to Promote Book Reading and Sharing. Steward, Frances; Goff, Diana // Illinois Reading Council Journal;Winter2007, Vol. 35 Issue 1, p38 

    The article discusses the use of reading hangtags to encourage book reading and sharing. The authors share the idea of recognizing the reading accomplishments of students, especially struggling readers, for home and classroom reading. Through reading hangtags, students are able to exhibit their...

  • Parent Involvement in Reading. Elish-Piper, Laurie // Illinois Reading Council Journal;Summer2009, Vol. 37 Issue 3, p50 

    The article discusses several strategies to be used by parents in supporting the reading development of their children. It cites the use of 3-2-1 strategy to a text beside the children or discuss it after reading. It indicates the application of the Read, Cover, Remember, Retell strategy for...

  • Understanding Reading Comprehension: Information and Ideas for Parents about Reading Comprehension. Elish-Piper, Laurie // Illinois Reading Council Journal;Summer2010, Vol. 38 Issue 3, p49 

    The article discusses the importance of parent involvement in children's reading comprehension. It offers ten strategies for parents to help their children improve reading comprehension on fiction texts including accompanying children when they are reading, making a short talk after reading, and...

  • Oral language and reading abilities of first-grade Peruvian children: Associations with child and family factors. Castro, Dina C.; Lubker, Bobbie B.; Bryant, Donna M.; Skinner, Martie // International Journal of Behavioral Development;Jul2002, Vol. 26 Issue 4, p334 

    This study investigated the relationship between selected child and family demographic characteristics (child age, child sex, child birth order, maternal education, and parent language status), family processes (parent-to-child reading at home, and parent expectations about child's educational...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics