Disabilities Services Newsletters

The Head Start Disabilities Services Newsletter is produced monthly by the National Center on Early Childhood Development, Teaching, and Learning (NCECDTL).

Code Switching: Why It Matters and How to Respond

One-third of the children in Head Start and Early Head Start are dual language learners (DLLs) who are learning English while also learning their home language. Virtually all of these children will code switch. In other words, they mix two or more languages in the same sentence while speaking. It is important that teachers, home visitors, and other staff understand what code switching is, the role it plays in language development, and how to respond to it.

Preschool Teachers

Teachers know and understand the broad range of content areas and the developmental expectations (i.e., social and emotional, cognitive, expressive and receptive language, motor, adaptive, and English language development) appropriate for young children as outlined by the Head Start Early Learning Framework. Teachers consider what they want children to know, understand, and be able to do using the five essential domains.

Infant and Toddler Caregivers

For infants and toddlers, school readiness refers to their developing capacity to self-regulate, demonstrate curiosity, communicate effectively, and develop close, secure relationships. Good health and proper nutrition support this developing capacity. This happens within the context of nurturing, culturally responsive relationships with parents, caregivers, extended family, and community.

Session 3: When Concerns Arise: Learning from Families' Experiences

This session covers information that is important to families and service providers when a disability is first identified. The video, Embrace Possibilities, shares information from the perspectives of families, early care and education, and early intervention service providers on how to identify a possible delay in development or a disability in an infant or toddler.

Session 8: Just Do It

This session focuses on the specialized activities and accommodations that can, during normal routines, be provided in inclusive settings to serve an infant or toddler with a significant disability. The session's approach is based on the belief that all staff members share the responsibility of ensuring that each child's specialized needs are met in a way that supports the child's development while nurturing relationships with the child and family.

Session 6: Enhancing Team Functioning

This session builds on earlier sessions in Volume 3 (Collaboration and Teaming) of the SpecialQuest Multimedia Training Library and focuses on a framework, guide, and strategies for enhancing team functioning.