This module is for Topic 4
Topic 4 - Communicating with Parents
Research shows that a caregiver’s relationship with parents and guardians is just as important as the bonds formed with the children in their care. Studies have shown that the more involved parents are with their children’s early childhood program, the better children do developmentally. In general, there are a number of communication strategies that caregivers can use to engage and connect with parents, such as a monthly newsletter, conferences, parent surveys and reminders by email or text message. Orientation sessions at the time of enrollment are some of the best ways child care providers can begin to build strong relationships with parents.
Click through the following slideshow to better understand the value of parent involvement in an early learning program. Click the volume button in the top left corner to hear the narration. Advance to the next slide by clicking the dark blue forward arrow in the lower right, or click the back arrow in the lower left to return to the previous slide.
Strong partnerships between caregivers and parents who are comfortable working together, and who communicate effectively, are more likely to help a child reach his or her full potential. Developmentally Appropriate Practice requires that you, the caregiver, get to know each child in your group as an individual and that you tailor activities to his or her individual needs and abilities. How can you really get to know the children? Observing them will help, but you will also want to establish an open line of communication with each child’s parents.
Before caring for a new child, ask the parents to complete an assessment in which they list out their child’s likes, dislikes, cultural background, strengths, behavior problems and eating habits. Knowing this basic information will allow you to plan activities that will be developmentally appropriate and engaging.
Video: Listen to the Experts
Caregivers can help establish partnerships with parents by making communication an integral part of the program. How can you establish clear and open lines of communication with parents in your program? Watch this "Listen to the Experts" video to learn more.