School surveys

Groundbreaking research on children’s learning

The Elfe study’s school surveys are intended to provide a comprehensive overview of children’s learning, looking at the interactions between socialization within the family and at school. They are conducted in the classroom, where teachers are asked to give the children exercises to do. A first survey conducted among preschoolers in their middle year of nursery school in 2016 was followed by a second survey 2 years later, when the children had moved up to primary school. This allowed us to collect information about their learning and pinpoint the changes that take place between the ages of 4 5 years and 6 7 years in language and numbers.

Research goals

This is France’s first nationwide study to track children’s socialization, development and learning from birth and across their schooling. The originality of the Elfe birth cohort lies in the use of classroom exercises designed by researchers (research hypotheses).

The study focuses on key aspects of the children’s progress through school, including possible learning difficulties, academic performance, and subject and career choices. The information we collect about the Elfe children’s schooling will enrich all the data we have already gathered from their families on social environment, childcare arrangements, childrearing and cultural practices, leisure and cultural practices, and the children’s health and development since birth. Researchers examining children’s learning will therefore also be able to consider what goes on before and alongside school. This will inform the debate among the authorities and education professionals on topics such as the role of childcare facilities for young children, the impact of family blending, the effects of schooling on child development, and academic inequality.

Les étapes de l'enquête école

Deux premières enquêtes (2016 et 2018), menées en collaboration avec les enseignants de maternelle et de CP, ont permis de recueillir des informations sur les apprentissages des enfants.
Afin de poursuivre cette recherche inédite sur la scolarité des enfants, une opération similaire se déroule en 2020 dans les écoles élémentaires,

Initialement prévue en CE2, l'enquête se déroulera finalement en automne 2020, dans les classes de CM1. Cette enquête sera aussi l'occasion d'étudier l'impact du confinement sur les apprentissages scolaires des enfants.