Taking time to build partnerships with families is equally important. Family relationship building is challenging, yet full of opportunities and completely rewarding. The best outcomes for early learning occur when educators, families and the community work together.
The very essence of a child’s being is being part of a family. The earliest and most important learning experiences happen with family members and caregivers. When working with children, it is important to remember that we are also working with the child’s family and the community as a whole.
”Parents are a child’s most important teacher and home is the most important classroom.” The Urban Child Institute
Everyone in the community has the ability to be a great teacher and leader to children. As a community it is important to have a similar goal of creating opportunities for families to be involved in, contribute to and participate in their child’s learning and development.
Families want to know their child’s needs are being met, but they also want to know that their child is with someone caring and trustworthy. Children learn how to act by watching how others, especially family members and caregivers, behave and act. If families feel confident, happy and important their children will too.
To build relationships we have to show a genuine interest to get to know each child and their families. The more we learn about a child’s upbringing and family, the better teachers we become. To build a genuine connection we need to take the time to have meaningful conversations with families about their children beyond small talk about daily activities.
Building a learning partnership with families and our community is valuable and satisfying. By providing opportunities to talk and interact with families we are able to build trusting relationships that give children and families a sense of trust and belonging.
Remember, sometimes it’s the simplest things that make the biggest difference.
“Put simply, relationships are the threads that bind together children’s lives, and it is why when we say there is no substitute for healthy brain development, we also say quickly, there is no substitute for caring adults in every child’s life.” The Urban Child Institute