Learning & Growing Together Tip Sheets: Ideas for Professionals in Programs That Serve Young Children and Their Families

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Based on the view that the primary caregivers for infants and toddlers are their own best resource for understanding and caring for their child and that parenting is a lifelong learning process, this book provides information and tools to help caregivers build a strong foundation for their child's development. The book, both in English and Spanish, is presented in four chapters. Chapter 1, "How Parenthood Feels," examines the impact of becoming a parent, discusses how one's own life experiences influence the kind of parent one becomes, and emphasizes the importance of caregivers taking time for themselves and for the critical relationships in their lives. Chapter 2, "Tuning in to Your Child," emphasizes how parents can best nurture their child's talents by exploring how infants and toddlers learn through their senses, discussing the importance of personal style, identifying five traits of temperament, and presenting parenting strategies to match a child's individual needs. Chapter 3, "The Amazing First Three Years of Life," presents information on how infants and toddlers feel and learn as well as the basics of brain development, and describes typical child behaviors and how parents can respond in a helpful way. Chapter 4, "In Conclusion: Thoughts To Grow On," presents some questions to help parents and other caregivers focus on how they and their child learn and grow together every day. Throughout the book are questions and comments in the margins to guide parents' attention, allowing them to better apply the information in the book to their own child. Four tip sheets are also included to assist staff working in diverse settings and roles: (1) center-based settings; (2) home visits; (3) parent groups; and (4) staff development. (KB)

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