Early Childhood Partnerships is a community-based consultation, mentoring, direct service, and applied research collaborative. By supporting our colleagues' use of best practices, forging University-Community collaborations, we aim to help young children and families, particularly those at developmental risk and with delays/disabilities during the early childhood period, birth to 8 years of age. Since 1994, we have partnered with more than 300 agencies across the world, helping them to practice and prove how good they are at what they do.
Here is a sampling of the wide range of services provided by Early Childhood Partnerships:
- On-site mentoring for ongoing professional development of teachers supplemented by web-based options
- Prevention through consultation strategies to teachers to promote healthy behavior, development, and early learning in young children
- Collaborative design, selection, and implementation of measurement methods to monitor child, family, and program status and progress
- Technical assistance, training, and mentoring for inclusion of young children with special needs into typical early childhood settings
- Parent education and support on preventive developmental healthcare concerns and early school success competencies
- Practice learning practica and internships with graduate students to advance the work of community partners
- Technical assistance to program staff and administrators about database technologies for linking assessment, curriculum-planning, intervention, and applied program outcomes evaluations
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What's Going on in Early Childhood Partnerships?
The Comforting Capacity of Books- Helping Young Children Cope with Trauma
Stop by the Office of Child Development’s HealthyCHILD (HC) office any day of the week during the school year and you will likely find empty space. If your visit is in the spring or fall, you’ll also find the P.R.I.D.E. (Positive Racial Identity Development in Early Education) team out and about, offering learning sessions for parents. Both of these teams travel all over the city of Pittsburgh to provide their programming. HealthyCHILD helps early educators and families build their capacity to promote children’s social-emotional wellness. P.R.I.D.E. helps parents build the knowledge and skills they need to help their children develop positive attitudes about their skin color, history, and people.
Although providing guidance to adults about how to help children cope with trauma and feel valued, acknowledged and accepted is nothing new for HC and Parent Village staff, responding after the tragedy at the Tree of Life Synagogue has been difficult. Understandably, like most of you, we are experiencing heavy emotions after hearing about the senseless loss of so many lives. In an effort to help, we have been working closely with Pittsburgh teachers, children, and families to process emotions, identify coping strategies and provide guidance on how adults can help young children. As a parent/guardian or teacher, you may be wondering, “what can I do to help?”.
Families and teachers play an important part in helping to reestablish a sense of normalcy and security for children after an act of violence occurs. Even though most teachers and parents/guardians do not have skills to provide therapy, teachers and parents can create a space where children feel safe and secure. One way they can do that is by using books to help children learn about and understand frightening experiences and cope with their own feelings of anxiety or fear. Storytelling and reading have long been recognized for their therapeutic potential.
P.R.I.D.E.’s Parent Village program regularly provides books for African American parents that help their children feel good about all aspects of themselves. HealthyCHILD regularly provides and utilizes books to build children’s social-emotional skills and help start conversations around tough topics and during scary times. We do this because we understand the ways books can support children’s positive identity and social-emotional development. Below is a list of books parents and teachers may want to consider reading to help young children cope with trauma, anxiety, and loss.