improving Children's Lives
Driven by Community Needs
Since 1961, the Juniper Gardens Children’s Project has developed meaningful solutions to improve the care and educational experiences of children in the Greater Kansas City area and beyond. We are a collaboration between the local urban community, KU faculty and students, and partner organizations.
We research how children develop and how they learn. We study how families, teachers and caregivers can most effectively enhance children’s outcomes, and we make our research accessible to professionals, parents and the public.
Trina Spencer Named Juniper Gardens Director
Trina Spencer, who researches the promotion of academic language of young children with and without disabilities, has been named director of the Juniper Gardens Children’s Project. Spencer brings an extensive record of federally-funded research to Juniper Gardens. Her work applies aspects of behavior, language, psychology and education to the development and assessment of tools that promote early literacy, language and reading comprehension.
postdoctoral pesearchers trained
in external research funding in the past 10 years
If you’ve ever witnessed the blur of activity that is a typical preschool-age child, it can be difficult to imagine them as disciplined research partners. Yet for more than 20 years, scientists at KU have studied interventions that pair young children with peers of similar age who have autism spectrum disorder. The NIH recently awarded a $345,000 grant to investigators to further their research with up to 40 preschool children with autism spectrum disorder.