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Using Home Visits to Enhance Literacy Skills Carla Peterson Gayle Luze Kere Hughes-Belding Iowa State University June 2, 2010 Contact Information • Carla Peterson Professor Human Development and Family Studies E262 Lagomarcino Hall Iowa State University Ames, IA 50011 firstname.lastname@example.org 515-294-7804 Overview • What is developmental parenting? • How practitioners can facilitate developmental parenting • Considerations for promoting language and literacy development How young children learn • What is this child learning? • How is this child learning? • What does this tell us about how to intervene with young children and their families? Home Visiting – Intervention – Learning Today’s Discussion • Using a parenting-focused model to facilitate developmental parenting to keep learning alive between home visits Developmental Parenting • What parents do to support their children’s learning and development • Values a child’s development, supports a child’s development, changes along with a child’s development • Is warm, responsive, encouraging, and communicative • Is what many early childhood programs strive to increase Facilitative Approach • A facilitative approach makes developmental parenting easier • Emphasis is on child development • Focus is on parent-child interactions that support early development • Practitioner uses strategies to assess and expand on family strengths to support early development Triadic Interactions -- Coaching • Coaching -- a reciprocal process between a coach and a learner, comprised of a series of conversations focused on mutually agreed upon outcomes” (Rush et al., 2003, p. 34). Triadic Interactions -- Coaching • Coaching involves – supporting and encouraging an individual during the process of learning and using new skills by giving specific feedback about performance (Kaiser & Hancock, 2003). Triadic Interactions -- Coaching • This learner focused context – provides a framework for • self observation, • self correction, • reflection, and • discussion that – actively engages the learner by providing multiple opportunities to practice new skills with guided feedback (Rush et al., 2003). Coaching Process – Components • Initiation • Observation • Action • Reflection • Evaluation (Hanft, Rush, & Shelden, 2004) Facilitative Approach -- A B C • Approach and attitudes • Behaviors • Content Facilitative Attitudes • Practitioners show facilitative attitudes when they are – Responsive to family strengths and culture – Flexible in strategies and activities – Supportive and accepting in relationships with the family Facilitative Behaviors • Practitioners show facilitative behaviors when they – Focus parents on child development – Elicit parent-child interaction – Support developmental parenting behaviors – Establish a collaborative partnership with parents – Involve other family members – Use family activities as learning opportunities Facilitative Content • Practitioners provide facilitative content when they – Provide information parents want and need now – Emphasize broad developmental foundations – Plan a “curriculum” on developmental parenting – Help parents plan child development activities – Get information about community resources Parenting-focused Model Practitioner Parent Child Triadic Interactions – Goal • Engage parent with child – Enjoyable interaction – Common activity • Daily routine • Toy/game/song • Task • Why? – Enhance child development – Increase parent’s enjoyment of child – Build communication foundations Triadic Interactions – Tips • Talk to the parent – Directly – Through the child • Hand materials to the child • Draw parent into activity through the child • Pretend there is a glass wall between you and the parent Why does this make me worry? Parenting-focused Model +Respects parent as child’s teacher +Builds developmental parenting skills +Builds parent confidence in parenting +Helps parent use child development information +Helps parent keep parenting during a crisis +Establishes an enduring context for a child’s development Parenting-focused Model - Requires more practitioner training and skills Unpacking Home Visits What is the Role of the Practitioners? ITDS & FDS What is the Role of the Practitioner? Support Child-Oriented Activity Direct Teaching w/Child Model for Parent Coach Parent-Child Interaction Support Adult Communication Other Role of the Practitioner-Overall vs. Parent- Child Triadic Interactions ITDS Role - Mother’s Engagement Developing Language & Literacy Connection • Start with positive adult-child relationship • Build language skills from the very beginning – Use language around children: describe, explain, introduce new words and activities – Incorporate language into play: describe, explain, introduce new words – Help parents understand that talking and language will help child develop school skills and have more job opportunities Language and Literacy Environment • Include things for children to think and talk about – Make environment interesting – Have books available (for all ages) – Toys/materials that encourage children to interact with one another – helps develop language and social skills Language and Literacy Environment • Use pictures – Photos of children engaged in home, neighborhood, or classroom activities (include labels) – Photos of conceptual words – group by concepts (color, size, shape, sound) – Combine photos with words for labels – make the labels meaningful – Use meaningful labels in rooms Language and Literacy Interaction • Children learn language/literacy best during interactions that include support and feedback • Ask open-ended questions • Use new vocabulary words • Use descriptive words (including feeling words) Language and Literacy Interaction • Have conversations with children – Talk about what interests them – Help keep a conversation going for more than one turn – Wait – give children time to respond • Make talking part of typical routines – Describe what you are doing and why Language and Literacy Interaction • Sing with children – especially babies • Repeat nursery rhymes • Tell stories related to children’s culture – invite others in to tell stories • Invite people in to read with children • Combine stories with actions – add motor element to language and literacy Selecting Books for Young Children • Books should: – Interest children (familiar routines, about things they like: trucks, animals, etc) – Have simple & engaging stories (plots) – Have bright colors & sharp contrast – Have big print – Rhythmic writing: use repeated phrases, rhyme, use familiar phrases – Be sturdy (board/bath books for babies; hardcover books for toddlers) Selecting Books for Young Children • Books can help children – Develop cognitive skills – talk about their world, teach new information – Develop motor skills – holding books, turning pages – Develop social skills – read about how to get along with people, solve relationship problems – Develop a love of books – are fun, give them a chance to spend time with a favorite adult Reading with Children • Read at a slower pace with children • Read with expression (different voices for different characters) • Hold the book so children can see pictures • Ask questions while reading (open ended questions, predict story) Reading with Children • Point to words as read, talk about words/letters • Go beyond the text (talk the story) • Read books without words or without story line and make up your own (e.g., Good Dog Carl, Richard Scary books) Reading with Children • Read favorite books over and over • Read books related to classroom themes & activities (read about apples during fall, about children and naptime, etc) • Let children act out parts of the story Facilitating Parents’ Reading With Their Children • Help them plan a time for reading & set up to be relaxed – Make short reading sessions routine • E.g., at bedtime, after lunch, when Daddy gets home from work, with grandma • Bring books to make waiting easier (e.g., doctors’ office) Facilitating Parents’ Reading With Their Children • Help parents go beyond just reading the text – Model appropriate reading for them • Pace, voice inflection, asking questions, commenting – Send home books and tips for reading – Give ideas for including literacy in everyday activities at home (e.g., let child “write” as parent makes shopping list) Facilitating Parents’ Reading With Their Children • Encourage use of the local library – Find out the library hours – Hold group events at the library & in conjunction with story time if possible – Show parents how to use library if needed Learning About Family Routines • Community map • Routines-based interview (McWilliam, 2000) References • Axtmann, A., & Dettwiller, A. (2005). The visit: Observation, reflection, synthesis for training and relationship building. Baltimore: Brookes. • Kaiser, A. P. & Hancock, T. B. (2003). Teaching parents new skills to support their young children’s development. Infants and Young Children, 16, 9-21. • Klass, C. S. (2008). The home visitor’s guidebook: Promoting optimal parent & child development. Baltimore: Brookes. • Rush, D. D., Sheldon, M. L. & Hanft, B. E. (2003). Coaching families and colleagues: A process for collaboration in natural settings. Infants and Young Children, 16, 33-47. • Roggman, L. A., Boyce, L. K., Innocenti, M. S. (2008). Developmental parenting: A guide for early childhood practitioners. Baltimore: Brookes.
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