Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Thesis


Education, Preschool--Iowa--Waterloo; Education, Preschool; Kindergarten; Public schools; Waterloo (Iowa)--Public schools; Iowa--Waterloo;


The problem of the investigation concerned itself with the effect of preschool experiences on the achievement of the kindergarten children enrolled in the 1971-1972 Follow Through Program in Waterloo, Iowa, which used the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, model of individually prescribed instruction. The study explored the effects of preschool experience upon kindergarten males and females as contrasted to the male and female kindergarten children without preschool experience.

Two conceptual constructs gave direction and provided the rationale for this study. The first conceptual construct provided research related to early childhood education presented according to the Geneticist, Environmentalist, and the Interactionalist's positions. The second construct presented research related to preschool learning to show the influences of home atmosphere and preschool attendance.

Each of the six curriculum areas of the P.E.P. (Primary Education Project) Early Learning Curriculum, which were Quantification, Classification, Gross Motor, Visual Motor, Auditory Motor, and Letters and Numerals generated two hypotheses to be investigated. Males with preschool experience were contrasted with males without preschool experience. Females with preschool experience were contrasted with females without preschool experience.

Statistically, the hypotheses were stated in the null and specified a direction for analysis. It was noted that children with preschool experience should evidence higher levels of achievement than those without preschool experience. The effects of preschool experience was tested with the nonparametric sign test which uses plus and minus signs rather than quantitative measures as its data. The probability associated with the occurrence of a particular number of plus or minus signs was determined by reference to the binomial distribution with P = Q = ½, in Appendix G. The following significance levels of the probabilities were chosen 1.05, Highly significant; .10, Significant; and, .10 to .20, Trend toward significant.

The findings showed that generally, preschool experience did make a difference. Preschool experience had a highly significant effect for the males in the curriculum areas of Quantification, Classification, and Auditory Motor. Preschool experience had a highly significant effect for females in Quantification, Classification, Auditory Motor, and Letters and Numerals. A trend toward significant was noted for males and females in the area of Visual Motor. Preschool experience had little or no effect in the curriculum areas of Gross Motor and Letters and Numerals for the males, and Gross Motor for the females.

The findings did suggest that preschool programs are desirable in providing a foundation for kindergarten experiences.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Specialist in Education


Department of Educational Leadership and Postsecondary Education


Department of School Administration and Personnel Services

First Advisor

Wayne P. Truesdell


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Date Original


Object Description

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