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Presentation on theme: "ESSENTIAL CONNECTIONS:"— Presentation transcript:

Ten Keys to Culturally Sensitive Child Care The Program for Infant Toddler Caregivers Developed Collaboratively by the California Department of Education and WestEd

2 Essential Connections:

3 Keep in mind… This video has a focus on the care for infants and toddlers. Rules and environments in child care settings usually represent the dominant culture. Families vary tremendously in how they follow cultural rules.

4 Key #1: Provide Cultural Consistency
Young children need to feel good about where they come from.

5 Yolanda Torres “The child’s culture is tied into the self-esteem. This is what we are looking at right from the beginning – to make a child feel good about himself” “ If you shame a child because he is using his own language, you are telling the child that his parents don’t know how to raise him.”

6 Carol Brunson Phillips
“Teach children in a culturally consistent context, rather than teach culture to children. This means that the context of child care needs to be consistent with the child’s home context.”

7 Key #2: Work Toward Representative Staffing
Employ caregivers who are of the same culture and who speak the same language as the children served. Seek cultural representation at all levels of staff and management.

8 Louise Derman-Sparks “We have to look at every aspect of policies and practices…how we recruit staff, train them, pay them, the working conditions, who are supervisors…”

9 Key #3 Create Small Groups
All infants benefit from small groups. Large groups are chaotic and confusing. In small groups caregivers have fewer cultures to relate to. Small groups prevent misunderstandings.

10 Key #4: Use the Child’s Home Language
Home language supports the child’s identification with her family and culture. Infants needs are met when home and childcare use the home language. Infants feel powerful and self confident when their words are understood.

11 What If We Don’t Speak the Same Language?
Translate all written information. Find an interpreter. Learn basic “toddler” vocabulary.

12 Key #5: Make Environments Relevant
Materials should reflect the children and families you serve. Materials should reflect their culture. Develop an environment that focuses on the families in care.

13 Carol Brunson Phillips
“..for very young children it is the interactions that communicate the culture in the child’s world.”

14 Key #6 Uncover Your Cultural Beliefs
What are the roots of your child care practices? What cultural values are reflected in your caregiving?

15 Lily Wong Fillmore “There is almost nothing a person can do while caring for a child under three that is not cultural.” “Everything one does is cultural.”

16 Key #7: Be Open to Perspectives of Others
Awareness of multiple perspectives on childrearing practices leads to respect for others’ beliefs. Awareness of multiple perspectives on childrearing leads to a clearer understanding of your own perspective.

17 Don’t Jump to Conclusions!
What is naturally right for one person may not be naturally right for everyone. There are fewer universal practices than once thought.

18 Louise Derman-Sparks “Many caregivers think that behavior that makes them uncomfortable is wrong behavior, is developmentally inappropriate behavior, is unfair to children, or is harmful to children.” “ Most of the time, it is simply different behavior.” “The power of culture is so great that anything that isn’t like our culture feels unnatural.”

19 Key #8: Seek Out Cultural & Family Information
Gather information. Have frequent conversations with parents. Learn how things are done at home. Learn what is important to the parents.

20 Gather Information Read Ask Visit communities Visit homes of children
Make yourself available to parents both in the child care setting and in the community.

21 Key #9: Clarify Values Have an open discussion with the family when communication breaks down, or you find yourself confused about a family’s actions. Ask yourself what is best for the child? It takes time and persistence to discover the values behind strong feelings.

22 Key #10: Negotiate Cultural Conflicts
Negotiation is an essential part of parent/ caregiver relationships. Negotiation is not easy. Negotiation is a way of listening and coming to an agreement that takes both people’s values into consideration. Negotiation is always a balancing act.

23 10 Essential Keys Culturally sensitive care helps young children gain a strong sense of self early in life. Culturally sensitive care prepares young children to be confident and productive members of society.


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