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Evaluating LENA Grow's Impact on Early Childhood Education Classrooms

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Evaluating LENA Grow’s impact on early childhood education classrooms 

On Demand

Duration: 58 minutes

LENA Grow is a practice-based professional development program designed to help early childhood educators create equitable, robust language environments in infant, toddler, and preschool classrooms. Pairing LENA’s “talk pedometer” technology with strengths-based coaching, the program was first piloted in 2016 and has now served 7,000+ teachers and 25,000+ children.  

For the first time, two independent program evaluations of LENA Grow have been completed. In this webinar, researchers and program coordinators at SproutFive in Columbus, Ohio, and Next Door in Milwaukee, Wis., will share the methods, measures, and potential implications of their detailed reports. For instance, the researchers found links between participation in LENA Grow and increases in: 

  • Interactive teacher-child conversational turns.  
  • Teachers’ feelings of job satisfaction and self-efficacy, as measured by a Teacher Perception Survey and as compared to teachers who did not participate in LENA Grow. 
  • Children’s Teaching Strategies GOLD® scores in the domains of language, literacy, and cognitive skills, as compared to children who did not participate in LENA Grow.       

Dr. Robert Duncan, Assistant Professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at Purdue University, will set the stage for the discussion with a presentation of his recent paper published in the journal Infant and Child Development, called “Predictors of preschool language environments and their relations to children’s vocabulary.” Dr. Jill Gilkerson, Chief Research and Evaluation Officer at LENA, will moderate. 

While we’ve long known about the importance of early adult-child interactions, a research focus on children’s language experiences in child care classrooms has been long overdue. Between Dr. Duncan’s and Dr. Gilkerson’s independent studies and analyses, we now know more about child care language environments than ever before. And with these new program evaluations of LENA Grow, we also know more about our capacity to improve professional outcomes for teachers and educational outcomes for children. 


Grow Eval webinar_presenters_v2
  • Jill Gilkerson, Chief Research and Evaluation Officer, LENA
  • Robert Duncan, Assistant Professor, Department of Human Development and Family Studies, Purdue University
  • Jaclyn Dynia, Senior Director of Innovation and Research, SproutFive Center for Early Childhood Innovation
  • Michael McConeghy, Child Care Partnership Manager, Next Door Milwaukee