Home Visiting Series: Fostering Relationships to Help Children Thrive
Joyce Escorcia: Hello, everyone, and thank you for joining us today. We're so glad you decided to spend your hour with us. Welcome to the Home Visiting Webinar Series. Today, we are going to be talking about fostering relationships to help children thrive. Thanks for joining us before we get ready to kick off the holiday season here.
I am Joyce Escorcia, one of your hosts, and I am from the National Center on Early Childhood Development, Teaching, and Learning. I'm here today with my wonderful colleague Roselia, and, Roselia, do you want to say hi?
Roselia Ramirez: Hey, Joyce. It's good to see you, again, and again, just want to reemphasize that we would like to welcome you to the Home Visiting Webinar Series and we're really excited about our topic today.
Joyce: Yes, definitely. Today, we are super excited to be joined by Ashley MacNish. She is also from NCECDTL and wears a few more hats. You're going to hear a little bit more from Ashley, about who she is, and some of the great things that she's going to share with us today, in just a few minutes. The other thing we wanted to point out today was in that teal resource widget, we'll just remind you that your Participant's Guide is there, as well. This is really meant to be an interactive document that you can use as you watch the webinar.
It tells you a little bit more about some of the segments that you might see. There are places in there for you to reflect. There are resources. All those things are right there for you, so we encourage you to download that and just use it as your little companion guide along the way. For this session, we have pulled out a couple of objectives. And by the time we finish our time together, we really hope that you walk away with an understanding of the importance of relationships by demonstrating practices focused on supporting and maintaining strong relationships.
And also that you'll be able to use some practical strategies and share some of the resources that we talk about today that support those nurturing and responsive relationships. We want to start as always making that connection to the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework or the ELOF. We really know that's what guides us in our work, right?
We know that the first five years of life are just an exciting time and there's so much happening when it comes to development and learning for children. The ELOF describes the skills, behaviors, the knowledge, the programs must foster and encourage in all children. We know that this framework is grounded in research and it really tells us what young children really should know and be able to do to succeed in school.
We know that the quality of the experiences that young children experience, we know it varies and we know that this is going to influence their learning and development, right? But this really is the framework that we're looking to that guidepost of what children can do. As home visitors, we use this information here to better understand what we can do to support effective learning experiences between their families and children. We know that we can use this to support those interactions. All of that together really leads to achieving those early learning outcomes.
We use this framework with families to help them engage in their children's learning. But the ELOF can really support you as a home visitor in guiding families to understand their child's development like to understand what is it that they're seeing, and what is it that's happening. Sort of plan for daily activities, to identify materials in their home that can support their child's development.
They can see how all those things that are already happening around them really – that's really where the magic is happening like that learning and that development. One of the five central domains of this framework is social and emotional development, and that's where we're going to be focusing on today. That when children experience positive social and emotional development in the early years, it provides a strong foundation for lifelong development and learning.
Everything we talk about today is going to be connected to that learning and development in the ELOF. When we think about social and emotional development and that domain specifically from the ELOF, it's broken down into these four sub-domains which you see here. Social development, which is where we focus our attention for this session, refers to the child's ability to create and sustain meaningful relationships. Those two sub-domains that we're going to be talking about there is that relationships with adults and relationships with other children.
We know that all children learn in the context of these caring, responsive, and stimulating relationships. As they explore the world around them, it all really happens within that context of connection and relationship. Before we dive into our topic, we just want to hear from you what strategies and practices you have in place that support building those relationships. We're going to invite you to go into your reflection activity in your Participant's Guide and then, we're just going to take a few moments to talk about that. We're going to invite you to put that into the Q&A.
Just to think about what are, what's one way that you support building relationships with the families you serve, right? We're looking at this question three different ways. What's one way that you support–building this relationship with the families you serve? What's one way that you support building relationships with children? Then, what's one way that you support building relationships between parents and their children?
We're going to invite you to pop that into the Q&A. Again, just those three different levels. You see the questions here on the screen and it's also in your Participant's Guide. While we're waiting for some of those responses to come through in the Q&A, I just, want to see, here with my partners for the day, Roselia and Ashley. If there’s one way that stands out for you as far as building relationships. Roselia and Ashley, anything that comes up?
Roselia: One of the things that I would say when I think about building relationships with families, I know I think back to my home visiting days. One of the strategies that I would lean on is taking that time initially to just really let the family know I see you. Just really building that foundation of trust, getting to know them, what's important to them, – even cultural.
I live in a predominantly Hispanic community and so it could be very easy to make assumptions. I think it's important to know that there's cultures within cultures. For me, it was really important to get to know what was important to them, how they were raising their children. Other family members that were within the home. And just really meeting them where they were.
I think that was really important to build that relationship with the family. That's something that just came to my mind. How about you, Ashley? I know you've been in the home-visiting world, as well.
Ashley MacNish: One thing I thought about was consistency. When we're building that trust with families, in the beginning, families come to us for many different reasons. Understanding what our role is, so consistency in communicating our role, providing choice in their decision making, their engagement, during and between home visits.
Consistency in like even the system of like, "Hey, I'm going to check in with you the 24 hours before our visit just to make sure we're still on.” Just like those ways to provide that predictability, that routine in our home visits create that safe environment for families to have that relationship. Then another thing that came up is thinking little tiny about, Roselia, you brought up meeting families where they are.
In thinking about that parent-child relationship, thinking about even creating goals for families if they need it around like thinking of Maslow's hierarchy of needs. Where, some families, in order to be able to attend to cues and give themselves as a caregiver. Thinking about self-care or that worry around, "Am I going to be able to get food on my table for me and my family the next day?”
Is knowing what those resources are available that you can connect families to when they need it to really build up the caregiver and their ability to have that self-care for themselves. That they can really pay attention and connect with their child.
Joyce: A lot of what both of you have shared are things that are coming up in the Q&A. Lucero, shares that respect and communication. I also see what you just talked about, Ashley, with consistency. It's coming up here, as well.
Lindsey shared listening to understand and not to respond I had to read that a few times. I was like, that's a powerful statement. That other thing is building relationships by communicating in a positive manner. Laura says just listen to them. We're hearing a lot of those common themes, right? It also shares that just bonding with the child and building trust, looking for ways to build trust.
All those things just lining up with the things that we're sharing. It just goes to what works for us when people are looking to build relationships with us, right? If it feels good for us, then, it's one of those things like do unto others, kind of thing. It's a lot of those things that we want out of that relationship building and some of those things, that parallel process of what we give and show to others.
Really great conversation there and great things going on in the chat. All right, so we've got the conversation started and now I'm going to pass it over to Roselia to talk a little bit more about where it all starts. It really is all about you.
Roselia: Thanks, Joyce. Before we start diving into our content today, Ashley mentioned the word self-care. We do know when we think about over the course of the last two years, I'm sure many of you, it's come up in a lot of different ways, the importance.
In each of our webinars, we've incorporated a couple of different segments. If you look at the first page of your Participant's Guide, it'll tell you about some of the different segments that you'll see in our webinar series. Today, we've incorporated It's All About You. We want to turn our attention to you, and in this segment of our session, we want to take a few moments just to highlight that importance of taking care of yourself.
We know that in order to do our best work in developing relationships with families as well as strengthening their relationships with their children. We must focus on taking care of our own social and emotional well-being. This really will allow us to do our best as, when we feel really good about ourselves, it allows us to be the best version of ourselves. We know that the work of home visiting can be it can be stressful.
By engaging in self-care practices, can help us to build greater social and emotional capacity to deal with some of the challenging times that we may encounter as we're doing this work. To be fully present with families, it's important to find ways to regulate our feelings throughout the day. What I'm going to do right now is a little pulse check. You're going to see a thumbs up or a thumbs down is going to appear on your screen.
If you feel that you currently have self-care practices in place that you use almost daily, give us a thumbs up. If you feel that you might have some practices, but you don't use them as often as you would like or you don't have anything in place, then we'll do a thumbs down for that one. We just pushed that out and so think about that for a minute. And again, the thumbs up is that you have practices that you have in place, and you use those almost daily.
Then the thumbs down is going to be that you have some practices, but you don't use them as often as you would like to, or you don't have anything in place that you're currently using. Let's give that just a couple of seconds. While we're waiting on those responses, Joyce and Ashley, what would you guys say? Are you guys a thumbs up or a thumbs down?
Ashley: I think lately if I'm being honest and transparent, I'm a little bit of a thumbs down. I know what I need to help myself regulate, but sometimes I just get caught up and being on go, go, go, and I just forget to do them.
Joyce: I don't do the same thing. Like if I had to, I would be like, depending on the moment, I know the things that are good for me. But sometimes it just gets so busy that my thumb tends to go down. Then I realize it and I'm like, oh, okay. I need to come back up and really prioritize myself a little bit more.
Roselia: Yeah, it's easy to let it go by the wayside. Well, we're going to go ahead and end the pulse check and it looks like we have quite a few people that are – we had more thumbs up than we did thumbs down. We'll say that, so that is definitely a good thing that we do have people that are prioritizing that. Let's explore this notion of self-regulation a bit more.
Self-regulation is the ability to manage our feelings, our actions, and our behaviors. We often think about this in terms of young children. However, in our work as home visitors, self-regulation becomes foundational in order for us to be successful. Our ability to self-regulate is foundational to building strong and positive relationships with the children and the families that we work with. It's important to note that many different things can affect our ability to self-regulate.
For example, our perceptions, our own biology, and our personal histories, just to name a few. We are all coming to the table with our own unique stories and challenges, some of which can affect our ability to self-regulate. With this in mind, let's take a moment together out of our busy day. One of the strategies that's just really quick, and easy, and you can really do this anywhere is just pausing for a moment throughout the day and breathing.
This really helps to release any tension that you're holding in. It helps us to re-center ourselves and support our ability to respond mindfully as we nurture healthy relationships with each of the families that we meet each day. This is a quick breathing and regulation exercise and it takes a total of 16 seconds. I'm going to walk you through it, just talk about the steps. Then if you're comfortable, go ahead and try those in your wherever you're joining us from today.
We know that breathing techniques are a quick and easy way. You can do these anywhere, including in your car, where we know that home visitors spend a lot of their time. This breathing technique is called 4-4-8 breathing. What it consists of it's breathing in for a count of four, holding that breath in for a count of four, and then slowly releasing that for a count of eight.
As you're breathing in, you're wanting to almost an exaggerated breath to where you almost like you feel it in your belly as you're breathing that in. You're taking in that breath for a count of four and then you're going to hold that for a count of four. Then you're going to slowly start to release for a count of eight. As you're slowly releasing, be mindful of how your body might be feeling as you're releasing those breaths.
This is just a really quick and easy way to support your own self-regulation. For those of you who indicated that you are practicing self-care daily, we encourage you to keep up the good work. We also we'd like to invite you to share some of your self-care tips that you practice in the Q&A. For our folks that felt like they were more on the thumbs-down side, we do encourage you to explore and find some self-regulation techniques that work best for you.
In your Participant's Guide, we have created some space where you can jot down some ways that you will commit to take care of yourself on a more regular basis. Joyce, I'm going to kick it back over to you to continue our conversation.
Joyce: I was going through the breathing exercise. I give you more thumbs up now. I've got 16 seconds. I can do this. Thanks for sharing that, Roselia. We’re talking about relationship, right? Relationships are key and we know that the relationships that children develop with the caring adults around them will really shape the way that they see the world. Those relationships really affect every aspect. It touches every part of their development and really their life.
A child's healthy development really depends on not just the quality, but the reliability of the relationships both within their families and as well as outside. It's just like this huge connection and this safe space that's created for learning and development through those relationships. It's through those relationships that children learn about the world around them, about things that are happening, about how they're happening. That's why relationships are so important because everything they do really happens within the context of how are those relationships and connections.
We know that those nurturing and responsive relationships, they're key to supporting children's healthy special development, right? Children who know that they can depend on trusted and caring adults are really better able to manage their thoughts, their feelings, their actions. And really to explore and learn with confidence. If they know they have that person that they can count on, then that creates for them that safe space to be able to explore, and try things.
And be confident about trying something and having to try it, again. We just want to invite you to think about what makes you a caring and trusted adult for the children in your life, the children of the families that you work with. Does a specific instance or child even come to mind maybe through your own experiences? Those responsive relationships help children to build those strong social skills, to gain that self-confidence.
They're more likely to engage in positive social behaviors with peers and adults. It really is so important. We really want to hear from you and how you've seen those responsive relationships between parents and children positively impact families on your caseload. We're going to invite you back into the Q&A, invite you back into the conversation with us.
What are some examples of how you've seen those responsive relationships, some of those positive stories? What are some of those relationships that you've seen between parents and children and how it positively impacts the families on your caseload? We're going to give you guys a few minutes because sometimes the Q&A, there's a bit of a lag. Ashley and Roselia and I were talking about this before we began, and Roselia, was there something you wanted to share from what we were talking about before? What’s something that you think of here?
Roselia: The first thing that comes to my mind is the whole notion of behaviors that challenge adults. Just thinking back to my home visiting days it was when that light bulb went off with the parents that the challenging behavior that they were experiencing was really once they understood that it was a form of communication. They were able to better respond to their child. It was more of being responsive versus reactive.
It really helped with that relationship because now they saw this challenging time now as an opportunity for growth and as an opportunity to connect with their child. It was rewarding to see that happening. And the parent making that connection and having that responsive relationship with their child at a time that was critical. It was a learning opportunity and so they got to look past it as more than just a tantrum, but as a communication opportunity and an opportunity to connect with their child.
Ashley: I was thinking about how when parents get that ah-ha moment of how much their behaviors, as much as their child's behavior, really impact that interaction style that's happening. And that relationships are the foundation for all other learning. In my current role, I coach a lot of professionals that work with families.
One time, a physical therapist told me how they were working on gross motor goals, just getting the infant to learn how to sit. And that the parent noticed when the child achieved that goal how much more interactive their child was. It was fun for the parent to be like, "Wow, like I have this whole other way of interacting with my child. They're seeing the world in a new way.” It was exciting for them. My takeaway from that is that relationships and the practices that we're helping families use on our visits can be embedded in anything that we're working on with families.
Joyce: Thank you guys for sharing. In the Q&A, we're having some stuff starting to come through. Like Maria, she shared something similar just as far as when parents are active. And they show their children a calm temperament, and they show that calmness, right?
When they do the right thing, that really comes through as a reflection in their child's temperament and behavior. Maria shared that, as well. Again, because they are little sponges. I have a two-year-old in my house and she mimics everything. I have to laugh at myself sometimes at some of the things she does because I'm like, well, she just got that from me. Everything, even thinking about like proximity.
Nicole talks about that when a parent gets down on the child's level, how they have a better response many times. Andrea shares that connecting with parents and building a trusting — again, connecting back to those relationship pieces, as well. I'm just scrolling through our chat here. Lisa makes that same point that we were just making here with helping parents to understand that behavior is just trying to communicate.
Roselia, going back to what you were sharing there — I'm seeing what else is in here. Joanne puts it all in one statement for us, right? Consistency, honesty, active listening, allowing time for relationship building and responses, balance of talking. All those things are things that I'm sure we've seen, so thank you for sharing that, Joanne, as well. Lots of great things coming through there.
Feel free to keep sharing back in the chat there, as well. We're going to keep the conversation going just a bit because we've got a lot of great things that we want to share with you. We know that families know their children better than anyone else and really are the most important teachers, educators in their lives, right? Like we know that. Young children are social creatures and they're really born to learn in social interactions.
Like we all learn in social interactions with others, even strangers. However, young children can learn even more from adults they're familiar with and comfortable with. Being familiar with the adult really affects that social relationship with that adult, and therefore, the child's learning. When children are familiar with the adults in their space and in their world, it increases the number of interactions and opportunities for learning, as well.
When we think about that like as a home visitor, it really means that those strong relationships between the parent and the child. Enhances and supports children's learning and social development. That is the focus of what we do in home visiting, right? That's about strengthening that parent-child relationship or that caregiver-child relationship.
That relationship that nurtures the physical, emotional, social-emotional development of that child. It's through that relationship that the child learns about whether the world is safe, about whether the world is a secure place, whether they're loved, who loves them. What happens when they cry, laugh, make a face, all those things, and also, they know who to go to when all those things happen. That's a great thing to know like that we really play such an integral part in that as home visitors.
When we think about it, it's also important for us to remember that effective and positive parent-child interactions really look different and distinct. And are unique within each family. A wide range of caregiving styles, playful interactions, and emotional responses help support healthy child development. That parent's responses to children, to their cues and their behaviors, differ. It's going to look different across households, across cultures, and that's really going to depend on temperament, personal history, current life circumstance, and just their cultural goals and beliefs.
We have to go in knowing that. And that responses may also vary with gender. Mothers and fathers influence their child social-emotional development and future academic success in different ways. We just have to remember that our normal may not be what's normal for others. Like I say, there's 1,000 different ways to be right about something. It's important for us to take the time to learn, and ask questions, and just remember that we're partnering with the family to really strengthen their relationship with their child. And execute those positive outcomes. It's such a great opportunity, right?
We know that our work as home visitors, what sets us apart from group care besides us going into the home on a weekly basis. Is that our work is done through the parent. We're working to support their confidence in their knowledge which really can impact their behavior and the way they do things within their home. The key point in that is just the importance of not only recognizing it but supporting that parent-child relationship.
What you see here are just a few of those behaviors that can positively impact child development. And reinforce why it's so important for us to support that parent-child relationship and those positive interactions. Things like affection. When we talk about affection, it refers to that warmth, physical closeness, and positive expressions toward the child. Affection is related to outcomes like having less antisocial behaviors and better adjustment.
More compliance, greater cognitive ability, and more school readiness. When we think about responsiveness, responsiveness is really about how the parent is responding to the child's cues, emotions, words, interest, and behaviors. Well how does that connect to a child's social development? When adults in their life demonstrate responsiveness, it's associated with outcomes like increased secure attachment.
Improved cognitive and social and development or increased language development, decreased behavior problems, better emotional regulation, empathy. All those kinds of things come through with that responsiveness. When we think about encouragement and encouragement is defined as that active support of exploration of skills, initiative, curiosity, creativity, and play. When we think about that connection for a child's social development, it's when the adults demonstrate encouragement that children show less negativity.
They demonstrate a willingness to try challenging tasks and to really step out there. Increased cognitive and social development and even better language development, as well. When we think about teaching, so with teaching, we're referring to shared conversations in play, cognitive stimulation, explanations, and questions. The question is there, how does that relate to social development?
Positive outcomes associated with teaching include increased cognitive and social development, better language development, more conversation, and more emergent literacy skills. These are already things that we can share with parents so they can see how, just how these basic or foundational things. What that translate and looks like in their everyday.
When we're talking about teaching, we also want to approach discipline as a means of teaching, right? We can share strategies with families who are interested in ways to focus on positive behaviors that children exhibit. This can really be a powerful message and all families want their children to thrive, and to do well, and to succeed. Of course, we don't want to forget and that what's so important when we're thinking about those behaviors is that just playing and having fun together. That we want to encourage and support parents just to play and have fun with their kids.
When we think about the impact of play on social development, a child will be more likely to repeat what they enjoy. If they like it, they're going to do it more, which leads to practicing and mastering important skills. We want to really think about how we can support families to be proactive and set up their children for success. How can that be done? Through just playing and having fun. Lots of things to think about there. We've given you a lot to think about and now Roselia is going to get us into the conversation about some of those practice and strategies.
Roselia: Thanks, Joyce. In the first portion of the presentation, we wanted to elevate the importance of relationships and the role that they play in the child's overall development. Now we're going to spend some time looking at some effective practices, some strategies, as well as some resources that home visitors can use to promote positive child development. Through supportive positive parent-child interactions. You may have heard the term or the phrase, Serve and return.
In the context of child development, what does this really mean? At the core, serve and return is about responsive interactions between children and the adults who care for them and how these interactions help children grow and reach their full potential. Child and adult relationships that are responsive as well as attentive means that there are many opportunities for that back-and-forth interaction that helps to support as well as build a strong foundation in the child's brain for all future learning and development.
I think Ashley mentioned this earlier in how it just really affects all areas of development. In a nutshell, relationships really help to build a brain. To summarize this, we're going to watch a video clip from the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University. It just highlights what we're talking about here in terms of serve and return, an interaction that helps to shape that brain circuitry. We do encourage you to take some notes in your Participant's Guide as you're watching the clip. Let's go ahead and watch that.
Announcer: The key to forming strong brain architecture is what's known as serve and return interaction with adults. In this developmental game, new neural connections form in the brain as young children instinctively serve through babbling, facial expressions, and gestures. And adults return the serve, responding in a very directed, meaningful way.
It starts very early in life when a baby coos and the adult interacts and directs the baby's attention to a face or hand. This interaction forms the foundation of brain architecture upon which all future development will be built. It helps create neural connections between all the different areas of the brain, building the emotional and cognitive skills children need in life.
For example, here's how it works for literacy and language skills. When the baby sees an object, the adult says its name. This makes connections in the baby's brain between particular sounds and their corresponding object. Later, adults show young children that those objects and sounds can also be represented by marks on a page.
With continued support from adults, children then learn how to decipher writing, and eventually, to write themselves. Each stage builds on what came before. Ensuring that children have adult caregivers who consistently engage in serve and return interaction beginning in infancy builds a foundation in the brain for all the learning, behavior, and health that follow.
Roselia: As we saw in the video, one way that we develop healthy relationships with a child is through responsive interactions. To recap, serve and return is a special type of responsive interaction that is foundational for the healthy development of a child's brain and their relationships with adults.
This visual that you see here on your screen does a nice job at outlining what that process looks like. First you have a child who serves by saying something, by doing something, or by looking at something. Then the adult returns or responds in a meaningful, directed, developmentally-appropriate way that matches the child's serve.
These serves and returns form those connections across different areas of the brain building the foundation for all later life learning, as you saw that progression in the video. In addition to supporting parents to engage in serve and return interactions with their child, there are four other home visiting practices. That research has shown effectively increases the parents' developmental support for their children and it strengthens relationships with their child.
Here we have the first two. The first one is establishing a positive relationship with the parent, child, and other participating family members. Some strategies to support this process include things such as showing warmth and acceptance, being respectful, and showing courtesy. Things such as being flexible and open to other points of views. We talked about meeting families where they are and just really utilizing those active listening skills to help build that initial relationship with the family.
Then we have responding to each family's unique strengths and culture. Some ways that we could do this is by first acknowledging the individual's strength, but then also looking at what strengths are within that family. We have also developed cultural humility. What we mean by this is our commitment to be respectful and to be open to learning about each family's culture.
We might have some of our own cross-cultural competence, and this is based on our life, as well as our work experiences. Since all families are unique, it's important to always be open to learning more and then being careful to not make assumptions. Then also demonstrating openness — really looking at the family's preference, being open to understanding and knowing where that family is coming from. In addition, we can respond to each family's unique strengths and culture by encouraging parents to share in the decision-making. As well as creating opportunities where you can leverage those strengths, as well as partner with the parents to seek solutions. Rather than going straight to providing the answers or finding the solutions for them.
The second two practices that we want to talk about here, the first one is facilitating developmentally supportive parent-child interactions. This is at the heart of the work that we do as home visitors. This is a skill set that may be challenging as you develop expectations with parents and then parents learn to understand your role. Some things that you might want to consider here are things such as planning activities together.
Remember as you're working toward establishing a relationship and partnership with the family, you can facilitate the planning process by making suggestions. Keep in mind what goals the family has established for themselves. Again, just really important to engage the parent throughout that process. The other thing that we want to talk about here, too, is using materials that are found within the home.
This is important because we don't want parents to feel that they cannot promote their own child's development because they don't have the fancy or expensive toys that you might bring in. When you use materials that are found within the home, this gives the parents a sense of possibility utilizing materials that are available to them. There is a resource that we do want to highlight here and that is it's called Leave the Bag Challenge. This is available on the iPD Portfolio.
If you're curious about wanting to explore some more ways to utilize materials within the home, we do highly recommend that resource. The last thing that we want to talk about here in terms of practices is establishing a collaborative partnership with the parent to support the child's ongoing development. This is about that critical way to keep families engaged and to emphasize the importance of their role in your work together.
By establishing a collaborative partnership, you're also able to really establish some of those boundaries in your work as a home visitor and think about how to really identify your role as a home visitor. As well as the parent's role within that partnership to support the child's growth and development. Joyce, I'm going to turn it over back over to you here.
Joyce: Now we've come to our section is to try it out and so we want to look at some resources. For this portion of our webinar, we have Ashley MacNish, who I briefly introduced in the beginning. And Ashley got some great resources that she wants to share, just some ideas on how you could use them. Ashley, you want to say hi to everyone and let them know some of the great things you have for today?
Ashley: As Joyce mentioned before, I'm staff on NCECDTL, but I'm also staff on the National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations. I know these resources are linked in your Resource Guide. If you want to learn more about the Pyramid Model, our website is www.challengingbehavior.org. I bring that up is because a lot of the work I do in Pyramid Model is about helping adults understand these responsive relationships and why they're so important.
I also wanted to say I have four resources to share. I chose them based on how we talked there's this parallel process that's happening in our work as home visitors. Where we are building those partnerships that Roselia was talking about with families, but then we're also supporting families in those responsive caregiving practices with their children. The first two I'm going to share are for the practitioner level, so for home visitors.
The Early Interventionist Pyramid Practices Fidelity Instrument has six key practices areas that home visitors can use in their work with families. I just want to highlight some of the important ones. The first set of practices is building partnerships with families. Those are those effective practices that Roselia was talking about where you can dive a little deeper looking at how to support that healthy communication with families.
Practices that are responsive and support that relationship building with the family. Linking back to what Roselia said, it's starting at the beginning, taking time, and slowing down those initial visits to work on that relationship building. Another one is the family-centered coaching practices where that's where we can think about using the ELOF domains. For example, when we're working on those social and emotional development goals with families for helping them to understand their child's behavior. Where we can use things like providing practice opportunities during home visits, providing that reflection and feedback to families, the joint planning piece.
Working together as a team to make goals for the family and the child to work towards those outcomes together. The dyadic relationship indicators are practices that home visitors can use that support those parent-child interactions and the serve and return interactions that Roselia was talking about. And thinking about those things that Joyce was bringing up about being warmth and responsivity and the quality of those interactions, so ways to support that.
Coaches, those who coach home visitors can use this in your practice-based coaching to identify some of those practices. The next resource that I have to share is the Implementation Checklist. This is a companion to the EIPPFI, the resource I shared prior. All those practices are linked there. The purpose of this tool is to provide that reflection for home visitors to think about the practices that they're already implementing.
Or maybe think about practices they would like to implement. Thinking about those practice areas I just talked about, you can see on the screen here just on the first page itself, supportive conversations, building partnerships with families. Thinking about, "Am I using these with all the families on my caseload?” If I'm feeling a disconnect with a family, maybe I can go here and reflect on if I'm using any of these relationship practices or maybe pull from one of these practices to just try out and see if that helps.
Coaches could use this as part of the needs assessment to work on shared goals and action planning in the PBC process. The next resource I wanted to highlight, it's the Infant-Toddler Caregiver Reflection Tool. Both of these resources that I'm about to share are available in Spanish and English, so you can use them across caregivers. Even though it says Infant-Toddler Caregiver Reflection Tool, these practices really are the caregiver practices that we would like to see happening that support the relationship between the child and the adult. I always like to say this isn't meant to be used where we're going through the entire reflection tool in a home visit as like an assessment for the caregiver.
It's to help caregivers reflect on what they're already doing, ideas for maybe what they'd like to implement themselves in the future and use you as a resource to help them to do that. It supports that joint planning process for goals. It really looks at the what's the quality of those parent-child interactions. As a home visitor, I would suggest using this with intention. Someone brought up in the chat earlier before how listening to understand.
When you're having those conversations with caregivers, I know as a provider myself, one of the major things that families wanted to work on was their child's communication. If that came up in a conversation, then maybe I could pull this out and be like, "You know what? Let's talk about that. What are some ways that you talk to your child? How do you respond? How do you read their cues?”
Really helping to guide your conversations that way. The last resource I have to share is the Caregiver Planning Form. This is something that you can fill out together with families on your visits once you've talked through goals. You could use a goal from the caregiver reflection tool. You could use a social and emotional goal from the ELOF domains to write down with a caregiver. I love how Roselia was talking about really making sure there's cultures within cultures. Every family has their unique culture.
If it's a multiple adult caregiver household, each one of those adults came from a different culture and living. Really talking through these practices, evidence-based practices, if it's like, "I will respond to my child's cues.” Well, what does that look like for you? And making sure we're having those conversations and helping the caregiver talk through exactly what they want it to look like. This tool really breaks down not only what they want to work on, but parts of the day they want to work on it, materials that they might need. Roselia said using things in the home.
Well, if I'm working on peek-a-boo, maybe I'm a caregiver and I can't sit on the floor. Maybe I'm going to do it on the bed or a couch. Writing that in. Also, one of the things I love about this is, "I will know this worked when.” We get the caregiver to talk about, what are the responses you want to see your child do? How will you know what you're doing is having an impact on your child? Because we know all children's development happens within the context of those unique interactions that are happening every day.
Roselia: Those are some great resources that our participants can add to their Book CASE of resources to collect to help support their work. Just a couple of more that we want to highlight for you in relation to this whole notion of relationship building. The first one is the Relationship-Based Competencies.
These are research-based, and they're recommended practices across many fields working with families from pregnancy through the early-childhood years. This resource here is something that home visitors can use to help strengthen relationships with families and then support families in taking positive steps towards their own goals. As well as identifying personal and professional strengths and challenges for supporting family engagement.
The other one that we want to point out is a series of briefs. These are available on the ECLKC or the ECLKC. But there's one that's called You're the Best Teacher, Responsive Interactions with Young Children. This is an example of a brief that explores the importance of adults' responsive social interactions with children. This is on your resource list, but again, it is on the ECLKC.
As we begin to wind down our session today, we would like to thank Ashley, our guest speaker, for highlighting those resources that we hope you can utilize to help support your work. We would also like to remind you to save the date for our next webinar which is slated for February the 23rd. We're going to be exploring emotional literacy for that one and we have a guest speaker lined up for that session, as well.
As we begin to wind down, again, we would like to thank you for joining us today. We do encourage you to please take time to complete the evaluation for our session. The link is going to pop up at the end of this session. Once you complete your evaluation, then you'll get the information to be able to download your certificate of participation in our session today. With that, I would just like to just open it up to Ashley and, Joyce, just any closing words on your guys' end?
Ashley: I just wanted to say thank you for including me on this. I could talk about this all day.
Joyce: Well, happy holidays and if you have more you want to talk and share about, please take it to MyPeers. We would look forward to seeing you there.
Roselia: Yes, absolutely, and I'm going to put this up here. Again, if there's any questions that we did not get to, we do encourage you to join the MyPeers home visiting community. Lots of conversation can happen there and exchange. With that, we would just like to thank you for joining us today, and hopefully, we'll see you at our next session. Thanks, everyone. Have a good rest of your day and happy holidays.Close
Nurturing and responsive relationships provide a strong foundation for healthy growth and development. Through relationships, young children learn how to see and interact with the world and people around them. As home visitors, we focus on developing strong relationships with the family, supporting positive parent-child relationships, and maintaining relationships with program staff. This webinar explores practical strategies and resources that support developing and fostering relationships that are nurturing and responsive.
Note: The evaluation, certificate, and engagement tools mentioned in the video were for the participants of the live webinar and are no longer available. For information about webinars that will be broadcast live soon, visit the Upcoming Events section.