Teen Parents and Their Children: Language and Emerging Literacy
Adolescent mothers engage in less smiling and positive eye and physical contact with their infants than adult mothers. They are also more passive and more likely to be depressed than adult mothers. Adolescent mothers are less knowledgeable about child development than are adult mothers. The negative effects on the cognitive development of children born to adolescent mothers are evident. A study of children ages four to 14 showed that those born to the youngest teen mothers performed more poorly on tests of cognitive ability, were more likely to be retained a grade, and were less likely to be perceived by their teachers as performing favorably by the time they reached high school.