Teacher–child relationship quality and academic achievement in elementary school: Does gender matter?


By bhadmin February 2, 2021

Using data from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (N = 1,364) and 2-level hierarchical linear models with site fixed effects, we examined between- and within-child associations between teacher–child relationship closeness and conflict and standardized measures of children’s math and reading achievement from 1st through 5th grades. In addition, we tested whether longitudinal effects varied by gender. Results revealed a between-child effect of conflict and a within-child effect of closeness on reading achievement for the full sample. In addition, there were moderated between- and within-child effects of conflict on math achievement: Girls with more conflictual relationships showed lower overall levels of math achievement and less growth in math achievement than did boys with similar levels of conflict. Implications are discussed.

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