Publications and Research

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2022


In 2020, approximately 13% of all children under five experienced residential instability. Residential instability, also known as housing instability, is known to compromise the socio-emotional and behavioral development of young children. However, there is limited evidence documenting the effect of housing instability on preschoolers' cognitive and academic abilities, in particular the development of mathematics skills. The present literature review argues that unstable residential conditions have important implications for preschoolers’ early mathematics development. First, the current literature review explores the implications of residential instability for the early childhood developmental period. Then this review examines current studies on promotive and risk factors for early mathematics development of preschool children. Next this review synthesizes current evidence on the impact of housing instability on school readiness of preschool children. The present literature review closes by discussing future directions for research and practice in math acquisition of preschool children experiencing poor housing conditions.


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