Home Enrichment Is Associated with Visual Working Memory Function in Preschoolers
Home enrichment plays an important role in shaping children's development. In the current study, we inquired whether home enrichment was associated with pre‐schoolers' visual working memory (VWM) function, a critical cognitive system necessary for maintaining information for short periods of time. Home enrichment was assessed using an adapted version of the Home Observation Measurement of the Environment Interview. VWM behavior and brain function were collected as children engaged with a color change detection task. Home enrichment was associated with right‐lateralized fronto‐parietal engagement. Specifically, greater home enrichment was linked to increased activation in the right angular gyrus, important for working memory maintenance, and suppression in the right inferior frontal gyrus (rIFG), important for re‐orienting attention to distracting events. Critically, home enrichment‐related rIFG suppression was linked to better VWM performance. This work sheds light on potential mechanism(s) through which enrichment in homes might be involved with cognitive function during the preschool years.