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Home Environments

The cultural, social, technological, economic, and physical conditions of the setting in which a person lives constitute a home environment. These environments shape the cognitive development and educational attainment of an individual and are central in a person’s learning ecosystem. This entry provides an overview of the factors that make up home environments, gives information about the theories that conceptualize home environments, summarizes research findings, and describes home environment interventions.


Home environments are composed of multiple dimensions that influence people’s life chances and learning. The dimensions include socioeconomic factors such as parents’ income, social class, and level of education; cultural aspects of the family such as the language spoken at home, literacy practices (e.g., parental reading to children, singing songs, playing games), ethnicity, and parenting ...

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