You learned that bridging knowledge to practice is a key reason coaching is an effective professional development strategy. Review the knowledge statements from various VLS lessons that describe important information that child care professionals need to know. Then think of an example of a practice that demonstrates implementation of each knowledge statement.
- Infants & Toddlers - Communication & Language Development— Lesson One: "Infants and toddlers learn to communicate not only through the words you use, but by what and how you do things. . ."Look into infants’ eyes during bottle feeding and talk to them using a soothing and calm voice.
- Preschool - Physical Development — Lesson Five: “… many children perform self-help tasks, such as dressing themselves, cleaning up their toys, brushing their teeth, bathing, using the bathroom, eating with utensils, and making their own beds. While some children can accomplish these self-care skills independently, some will require help from adults, especially when it comes to tasks that involve small muscles, such as buttoning small buttons, tying shoes, or using a fork and a knife to cut food.”Encourage preschool children to attempt fine-motor tasks such as buttoning and opening snack packages. Provide experiences that strengthen these muscles such as beading activities or self-help puzzles. For the children who have tried and request help, show them and talk with them about how to do the task. For children who still can’t complete the task, you may need to do the task for them.
- School Age - Healthy Environments — Lesson Six: “….the level of self-awareness and verbal expression of emotions can vary from child to child. Children and youth may not always use their words, or even have the right words for the complex emotions they may feel.”If concerned about a child’s or youth’s emotional state ask them, “Is everything OK?” Even if they don’t share any concerning information, if you feel like their behavior or other signs indicate they need help, speak with someone from program leadership so you can together plan next steps.
- Family Child Care - Professionalism — Lesson Three: “As a family child care provider, you should respect and protect the privacy of all children and families.”When speaking to families about sensitive issues, make sure to do this in private so that no other children or families hear details. These conversations may need to be arranged with the family beforehand and they may need to occur during nonprogram hours.
- Focused Topics - Social Emotional Learning for Teachers — Lesson Four: “You can use controlled breathing to reduce your stress in an immediate situation.”Before a potentially stressful meeting with a parent or colleague, take one to three minutes to practice diaphragmatic breathing.