Thursday, November 19, 2015

Parental Engagement on the ECE Level

Research shows children who have parents who are actively engaged in their educational lives, do better. This is especially true when talking about early childhood education. Yet many parents have no idea of how to get involved.  As a parent development specialist and a persom well versed in Early childhood , I think there are 3 ways parents with a young child should be involved with their child's education. 1) Be willing to learn about and understand the difference in the way young children and older children learn. 2) Ask about ways you can help and support children's learning at home and do them. 3) Make time to volunteer in the center in the ways they need you to be involved.

~Be willing to learn about the difference in how younger and older children learn
Young children learn by actively observing and then acting out  what they see. Young children from age six months to five years watch, listen, and learn. Children are natural observers. However, children really begin to learn as they act out their observations. We in early childhood call this acting out play. Many parents not understanding the difference between acting out observations and play for enjoyment tend to  see dearly beloved sister who education as "just playing".  The truth is your child is learning through acting out a variety of situations they have observd over their young years. Early educators use observations, knowledge of child development, and open ended questions to help children link their observations with the skills they need to prepare for life and school.
Older children who can think, talk, read, and interact with others use those skills to learn and play becomes a chance to unwind. Play no longer is the primary tool for learning. Older children have developed other skills they use for learning.

~ Ask about ways you can support your child's learning at home and do them
Early childhood learning involves discovery, pre--skills, and learing from the world. Teachers use the classroom setting to help children learn and grow. Parents can also do activities with their young chilren which can promote discovery, curiosity, and observation. Making cookies, jello, and cakes can help children to observe changes which are made by adding cold or heat.  Asking open ended questions can help children make the observations. Example: when we put the jello in the refridgerator we could pour it like water now we can't. Why do you think that happened? Your child's teacher will have more suggstions for you. Remember  when you do them with your childen you are supporting their growth and development.

~Make time to volunteer at your child's center in the way they need you to be involved.

Every child care center needs volunteers for things to run smoothly. Sometimes they need someone to help kids into jackets to go outside. Or they may need you to help serve lunch or snack. Sometimes you could be asked to help to decide on a committee which effectts the whole center. For instance, you may sit on a playground committee deciding to resurface the ground. Please give your full atrention no matter the task and  you will not only be appreciated. You will become a part on the centers' commiunity. This is ultimately your goal.
Parents are a vital part of whole efucation proces Using these three suggstions as your starting point will help you to begin engaging in your child's educational growth.

Believe in Parenting


  1. Barbara you are an expert in Parent Development and Early Childhood. I would love to meet you one of these days. Keep up the good work our parents need you.

    1. Thank you Melvin. I am working on getting more info to more parents!