Middle adolescents' recollections of early child-care experiences
This qualitative research study examined middle adolescents' recollections and perceptions of their early child-care experiences. The participants were 25 middle adolescents between the ages of 14 to 17, inclusive, who attended Texas Woman's University's Child Development Center for at least 2 years during 1985–1990.
Data were collected during semi-structured interview sessions. All of the adolescents had recollections of their early child-care experiences. When recalling a first memory of the Child Development Center, they remembered playing or an emotion. They recalled relationships with caregivers and peers, the physical environment, activities, special events, and different emotions. Overall, their perceptions of the Child Development Center were positive and they gained valuable experiences. The adolescents did not remember many stories retold to them about their experiences of child care.
The adolescents' memories emphasized a caring, learning, and fun environment at the Child Development Center. Parents and child-care-center professionals can benefit from the adolescents' responses.