Afterschool programs, extracurricular activities, and unsupervised time: Are patterns of participation linked to children's academic and social well-being?

Deborah Lowe Vandell, Sandra D. Simpkins, Kim M. Pierce, B. Bradford Brown, Dan Bolt, Elizabeth Reisner
2020 Applied Developmental Science  
Patterns of afterschool activities were studied in low-income, ethnically diverse children (n ¼ 1796, M age ¼ 8.7 yrs). Cluster analyses indicated four reliable clusters: (a) regular participation in a high-quality afterschool program, (b) regular participation at the afterschool program combined with other extracurricular activities, (c) unsupervised time afterschool combined with extracurricular activities, and (d) low participation in any of these settings. Children who regularly attended a
more » ... igh-quality afterschool program alone or combined with extracurricular activities were reported by teachers to have higher academic performance, work habits, and task persistence, and less aggression towards peers compared to children whose afterschool hours combined unsupervised time with extracurricular activities. Attending high-quality afterschool programs alone and in combination with extracurricular activities also were associated with child self-reports of less misconduct compared to unsupervised time combined with extracurricular activities. These findings indicate the value of high-quality afterschool programs for children growing up in poverty.
doi:10.1080/10888691.2020.1843460 fatcat:cojhyirofbdrplby3sdpfbbvca