The Poverty Gap

In a study in 1995, Betty Hart and Todd Risley of the University of Kansas found that children in professional families heard on average 2,100 words an hour. Working-class kids heard 1,200; those whose families lived on welfare heard only 600. By the age of three, a doctor’s or lawyer’s child has probably heard 30m more words than a poor child has.

Well-off parents talk to their school-age children for three more hours each week than low-income parents, according to Meredith Phillips of the University of California, Los Angeles. They put their toddlers and babies in stimulating places such as parks and churches for four-and-a-half more hours. And highly educated mothers are better at giving their children the right kind of stimulation for their age, according to Ariel Kalil of the University of Chicago. To simplify, they play with their toddlers more and organise their teenagers.

More here– it’s longish, but read it all the way through.

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