BTT 2014 Archive Page

The 18th Annual Birth to Three Institute (BTT) was a three-day event designed to enhance the quality of services for expectant parents, infants, toddlers, and families. Explore the plenary sessions and webinars below by topic. They may be helpful to: Early Head Start (EHS), Migrant and Seasonal Head Start, American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start, child care, and family child care staff; training and technical assistance providers; and the broader early childhood community.

Below are the 10 sessions archived from the Institute.

View the Videos:

Plenary Sessions

Building Baby Brains: The Importance of Early Experiences

Children are born learning. From their earliest interactions with parents and caregivers, children's experiences shape skills that serve as the building blocks for later success. This plenary focuses on the importance of interactions and early relationships as the context that fosters all learning. Through a discussion of the latest research around children from birth to age 3, we focus on the foundations of cognitive and social-emotional development. These are critical to a wide range of later skills, such as reading and making friends. Finally, we highlight practical applications of the research as well as resources for additional information.

Special Guest: Sarah Roseberry Lytle

Related Materials:
Building Baby Brains: The Importance of Early Experiences (PowerPoint slides) [PDF, 752KB]

Infants' Grasp of Others' Intentions

The perception of other people as intentional agents is fundamental to human experience and foundational for human development. A great deal of children's early learning depends on their ability to understand and respond appropriately to others' actions. Learning language, social values, and cultural norms all depend on the ability to understand others' actions as intentional. Research has revealed that this cornerstone of social perception has its roots early in infancy. It draws structure from the universal, early emerging experiences of engaging in planful actions and interacting with caregivers and peers. Infants' own actions correlate with their emerging ability to see the actions of others in terms of abstract, intentional relations. Activities that engage infants in new and in collaborative actions with others change their view of intentional action in others. Recent findings have begun to clarify the neural processes that underlie these early developments. These findings open new perspective on the classic question of how doing leads to knowing.

Special Guest: Amanda Woodward

Related Materials:
Infants' Grasp of Others' Intentions (article) [PDF, 129KB]

Infants' Grasp of Others' Intentions (PowerPoint slides) [PDF, 1.2MB]

Navigating the Social World: What Infants, Children, and Other Species Can Teach Us [PDF, 777KB]

Parenting and Partnering: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Families

The numbers of LGBT families are largely underreported in the United States. However, the Williams Institute estimates that 3 million LGBT Americans have had a child, and as many as 6 million children and adults have an LGBT parent (Gates, 2013). How are you serving the LGBT families in your community? In this session, LGBT families share their experiences of parenting in our complicated social and political environment. They offer their insights into what programs can do to be truly welcoming and respectful of the diversity of families in their communities.

Moderator: Amanda Perez

Parent Panel: Sharon DeBerry, Kim Phillips, Mandy Smith

Related Materials:
Report of the Early Head Start National Resource Center Expert Work Group: May 15-16, 2013 [PDF, 173KB]

Track A: Inclusive Child Development

Session A5: Infants Make Meaning: Reflective Teaching and Learning with Infants and Toddlers

Research shows that, starting from birth, infants and toddlers construct concepts and skills during everyday moments of play. How can caregivers make the most of this amazing potential? Participants will observe infants and toddlers as they play and learn to use ideas inspired by teachers in Reggio Emilia, Italy. Reflect on how infants and toddlers reveal their thinking and how this can inspire curriculum planning, assessment, and family engagement.

Presenters: Margie Perez-Sesser and Mary Jane Maguire-Fong

Related Materials:
Infants Make Meaning: Reflective Teaching and Learning with Infants and Toddlers (PowerPoint slides) [PDF, 508KB]

Session A8: Dual Language Development in Children Prenatal/Birth-Three

This session will address how infants and toddlers develop a first language. Participants also will learn what happens when babies grow up with more than one language and look at the role of environment in first and second language acquisition. Explore key research-to-practice implications.

Presenters: Robert Stechuk and Joanne Knapp-Philo

Related Materials:
Dual Language Development in Children Prenatal/Birth-Three (PowerPoint slides) [PDF, 392KB]

Track B: Child Health and Prenatal Services

Session B14: Inclusive from the Start: Maximizing Belonging for Children and Family Members

Early education staff learn how to work with children to support their learning and development. However, when a child with disabilities or special needs is enrolled in a program, questions may come up about what to do for that child. Quality EHS programs are inclusive. However, inclusion involves more than simply brining children and families together; it's about belonging and community. Learn about successful strategies available to support all children in your care.

Presenters: Linda Brault and Senta Greene

Related Materials:
Early Childhood Inclusion [PDF, 174KB]

Inclusive From the Start: Maximizing Belonging for Children with Disabilities and Family Members (handout) [PDF, 311KB]

Inclusive From the Start: Maximizing Belonging for Children with Disabilities and Family Members (PowerPoint slides) [PDF, 324KB]

Track C: Family and Community Partnerships

Session C4: Family Engagement: Building Family Well-Being through Financial Security Strategies

EHS staff partner with parents to make progress on family outcomes, including family well-being and financial security. This session explores financial empowerment strategies such as financial education, matched savings, credit repair, access to mainstream bank accounts, and other services. Staff can help families take steps toward financial stability and provide protection during tough economic times. We discuss why financial security matters for families and what strategies programs can use to help build the financial security of their families. Learn how these goals align with the Office of Head Start Parent, Family, and Community Engagement Framework.

Presenters: Brandi Black Thacker, Jennifer Medina, and Laurie Wolsing

Related Materials:
Family Engagement: Building Family Well-Being through Financial Security Strategies (PowerPoint slides) [PDF, 577KB]

Family Service Workers and Financial Empowerment: Steps and Resources [PDF, 274KB]

Strategies for Increasing Parent Participation in Financial Education Activities [PDF, 252KB]

Track D: Management and Professional Development

Session D1: Meaningful Analysis of Early Head Start (EHS) School Readiness Data

Is your child assessment tool providing you with enough information about your infants and toddlers? Discover ways to ensure that your school readiness analysis is reliable and accurate. This session provides participants with information about using multiple data sources to determine the program's effect on the school readiness of very young children.

Presenter: Karen E. Hennelly

Session D18: What's the Difference? Reflective Supervision and Coaching in Early Childhood Programs

This session defines and identifies the distinct purposes of reflective supervision and coaching in early childhood programs. See how recent experiences of a Maine EHS program highlight the approaches, successes, and dilemmas in implementing these practices. Participants will gain practical approaches for developing a shared understanding of reflective supervision and early childhood coaching.

Presenters: Nancy L. Seibel and Heath Ouellette

Related Materials:
Examples of Powerful Questions [PDF, 339KB]

Questions to Guide Development of a Shared Understanding: Reflective Supervision and Early Childhood Coaching [PDF, 134KB]

What's the Difference? Reflective Supervision and Coaching in Early Childhood Programs [PDF, 513KB]

Track E: Home Visiting

Session E11: Creating Purposeful Socializations: Supporting Prenatal, Infant, and Toddler School Readiness through Family Engagement

Socializations are more than just an opportunity for peer group interactions for infants and toddlers enrolled in the home-based option. They can be designed to provide experiences that build skills for school success in all domains and reinforce program school readiness goals. Socializations involve the coordinated services of all EHS service areas and support family engagement. This presentation provides a creative and comprehensive look at socidalizations, including a walk-through of the process for developing an intentional experience.

Presenters: Evelyn Brooks Ridgeway, Arleen Williams, and Tamique J. Ridgard

Related Materials:
Bibliography [PDF, 117KB]

Meeting Early Head Start Performance Standards through Group Socialization [PDF, 174KB]

Preparing Socializations [PDF, 290KB]

Virtual Birth to Three Program Select the link to download the 2014 BTT Program [PDF, 1.4MB]

Send Birth to Three Institute General Inquiries to: ecdtl at ecetta dot info or call 1-844-261-3752.

Last Reviewed: January 2014

Last Updated: January 22, 2016