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Description: A core component of a high-quality early education experience is that children are provided opportunities, experiences and materials that allow them to engage deeply within developmental/early learning domains to build their school readiness skills. Virginia's Foundation Blocks for Early Learning articulates the skills and knowledge young children need to demonstrate by the end of preschool in order to be successful in kindergarten. Using effective curricula helps ensure that children are...
Description: It’s fascinating to watch young children learn about their world and develop new skills. And, it’s natural to find variation in the pace of development of different skills. The information and resources in this section will help parents and educators understand and support preschool-aged children's development. Early Literacy Early Math Early Childhood Resource Locator
Description: The National Early Literacy Panel looked at studies of early literacy and found that there are many things that parents and preschools can do to improve the literacy development of their young children and that different approaches influence the development of a different pattern of essential skills. Identification of the domain of early literacy skills Six early skills predictive of later literacy achievement Five early skills moderately predictive of later literacy achievement Instructional...
Description: NCFL works to eradicate poverty through education solutions for families. Over our 30-year history, we have changed the lives of millions of families by providing literacy strategies, programming, and resources. Engaging multiple generations in learning together is a fundamental and distinguishing aspect of our work, because we know this holistic approach creates a stronger impact and greater success for families.    Industry Insights Free Resources Families/Family Literacy Early...
Description: The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is a professional membership organization that works to promote high-quality early learning for all young children, birth through age 8, by connecting early childhood practice, policy, and research.  Developmentally Appropriate Approaches to Literacy: Books Articles Blog Classrooom Favorites: Articles To Share with Families Articles Most Recent Issues Articles Books Blog
Description: The U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences (IES) funds a network of 10 Regional Educational Laboratories (RELs). Each REL serves a designated region of the country and works with educators and policymakers to support a more evidence-based education system. In response to COVID-19, the RELs have collaborated to produce this series of evidence-based resources and guidance about teaching and learning in a remote environment, as well as other considerations brought by...
Description: The tables describe research-supported practices for parents and families to support virtual instruction and skill development for children and students with disabilities. These tables present the name of each practice or category of practices; a brief description of the practice(s); examples of specific actions associated with the practice for general education as well as, where relevant, students with disabilities, including subgroups; and additional information about the practice. The first...
Description: OSEP hosted a three-part webinar series on Continuity of Learning and Return to School during COVID-19. This series showcased ready-to-use resources, tools, and practices from OSEP partners to support the educational, developmental, behavioral, and social/emotional needs of infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities through remote and distance learning. Below you will find the archived webinars, featured resources, and additional tools and information to help educators, parents and...
Description: Social Emotional Wellness Considerations for Teachers and School Staff Quick Guide Social Emotional Wellness Considerations for Early Learners Quick Guide, Social Emotional Wellness Considerations for English Learners Quick Guide, Social Emotional Wellness Considerations for Military-Connected Learners, Social Emotional Wellness Considerations for Parents and Caregivers Quick Guide, Social Emotional Wellness Considerations Students with Disabilities Guide  Social-Emotional Wellness...
Description: A tremendous amount of social and emotional development takes place during the early years of a child’s life. The emotional well-being of young children is an important consideration for educators and caregivers supporting early learners (pre-K - grade 3) during this critical time.
Description: The Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) is focused on promoting the social emotional development and school readiness of young children birth to age 5. The Promoting Social and Emotional Competence training modules available on this site provide evidence-based practices for promoting children's social and emotional development and preventing challenging behaviors.
Description: This brief provides guidance to parents, family members, and caregivers about using the power of play to build resilience and support healing. Some of the ideas outlined in the brief include:  Create opportunities for young children to communicate their fears and express their big feelings in constructive ways. Support children in releasing the extra energy charge that accumulates in their bodies after a stressful or traumatic experience. Teach infants, toddlers, and preschool-age children...
Description: VCU-ACE is delighted to announce the development of early childhood specific resources for families raising young children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).  These resources are designed to support families through the challenges and disruptions of COVID-19, as well as support families in understanding topics related to ASD and child development.   From Our House to Yours: A Message to Families In this VCU-ACE video resource, Alicia Hart, VCU-ACE Training Associate and parent...
Description: Bring the World to Your Classroom (English Language Arts, Mathematics, Social Studies, Science and more) WHRO and PBS have curate FREE, standards-aligned videos, interactives, lesson plans, and more for teachers. You can Browse by Subject or by Grade. PreK-12 Resources for Emergency Closings (Available in Spanish) As teachers, students, and families deal with school closures, PBS LearningMedia producers and educators have come together to curate a special collection of resources organized by...
Description: "The COVID-19 pandemic is understandably causing worry and fear for youth, families, and educators. Each person’s feelings are different; our needs are too. Some crave structure; others prefer freedom to be and feel, rest, connect, play, create, read, or learn in self-directed ways. Caregivers may want to hold children close. Some kids may want that too; other young people are desperate for freedom and time with their friends. The purpose of this post is to encourage everyone to trust...
Description: This section includes Frequently Asked Questions and Guidance as well as Virginia's Focus on School Readiness: For parents and caregivers birth to age five, Virginia preschool programs for four-year-olds and Early childhood special education services for children birth to age five.
Description: This manual was developed by the Virginia Department of Education and the state system of Training and Technical Assistance Centers to help local school divisions meet federal and state mandates that children with disabilities be educated in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE). The manual contains 8 modules and extensive resources which provide critical information for understanding, building, supporting, and sustaining inclusive placement opportunities for young children with...
Description: Reading, and a love for reading, begins at home. Our one-page Reading Tip Sheets are available in thirteen languages and offer easy ways for parents to help kids become successful readers. Even though these tips are divided by age, many of them can be used with children at various ages and stages - parents are encouraged to choose the ones that work best for their child. These tips were created with the generous support of the American Federation of Teachers. These tips are for...
Description: Shaken Baby Syndrome/Abusive Head Trauma (SBS/AHT) is a term used to describe the constellation of signs and symptoms resulting from violent shaking or shaking and impacting of the head of an infant or small child. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) describes SBS as a subset of AHT with injuries having the potential to result in death or permanent neurologic disability. Can Tossing My Baby in the Air or Rough Play Cause SBS? SBS is a form of child abuse that happens when an infant or small...
Description: Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability that can cause significant social, communication and behavioral challenges. CDC is committed to continuing to provide essential data on ASD, search for factors that put children at risk for ASD and possible causes, and develop resources that help identify children with ASD as early as possible. What is Autism Spectrum Disorder? Screening  & Diagnosis Treatments Materials & Multimedia Research & Tracking Data &...
Description: Ready to learn the ins and outs of Listening and Spoken Language (LSL) early intervention? Hearing First just launched the Fundamentals of LSL Learning Series, a new 12-course learning program that will give professionals and parents a solid foundation of knowledge to help children with hearing loss learn to listen and talk. If you're new to LSL or just seeking to up level your learning, this program is for you! The first learning experience of the series starts in July, but you can learn...
Description: RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today launched Virginia is for Learners, an initiative to engage students, parents, educators, and employers with the Commonwealth’s efforts to better prepare Virginia students for success in the 21st-century workforce and adapt to a changing world. The initiative includes a public information campaign and a coordinated set of future-focused strategies to accompany recent major changes the Commonwealth has made to public education. “Over the...
Description: This online module from the ECTA Center addresses strategies to engage parents in activities to build their competence and confidence in providing learning opportunities for their child. The module is divided into 4 lessons ranging from 10-15 min. each, and includes short video demonstrations, checks a learner's understanding through a variety of interactive formats, and; includes a family capacity-building checklist for self-assessment or planning home visits.
Description: Parents and caregivers have certain goals in mind when children go to school. Regardless of whether children have disabilities or not, all parents want them to learn, explore, and experience as much as they possibly can. Parents strive for their children to complete their public education, obtain a diploma, and be fully prepared to move on toward their chosen path, whether that is immediate employment, higher education, or something else. In order for your child to achieve these goals, there are...
Description: Educators, policymakers, researchers and families agree: a high-quality preschool program can build early literacy and math skills, as well as develop the social and emotional foundation that children need to persist in school. But young children—whether in Head Start, public pre-kindergarten or in a private program—only receive the full effect of these benefits if they show up for class regularly. How do you go about improving attendance in the preschool years? It starts with...
Description: Milestones matter! Track your child’s milestones from age 2 months to 5 years with CDC’s easy-to-use illustrated checklists; get tips from CDC for encouraging your child’s development; and find out what to do if you are ever concerned about how your child is developing. From birth to age 5, your child should reach milestones in how he or she plays, learns, speaks, acts, and moves. Photos and videos in this app illustrate each milestone and make tracking them for your child easy...
Description: We are a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting foster, kinship, and adoptive families of children and youth with disabilities and other special needs. We serve families, educators and child welfare professionals in the Northern Virginia area. Formed Families Forward’s mission is to improve developmental, educational, social, emotional and post-secondary outcomes for children and youth with disabilities and other special needs through provision of information, training and support...
Description: The American Academy of Pediatrics released Info-graphics on the Opioid Crisis and its impact on children nationwide. Virginia's info-graphic includes: A GROWING CRISIS A DEVASTATING TOLL ON CHILDREN A NEED FOR FAMILY-CENTERED POLICIES WHAT YOU CAN DO
Description: Scientists and parents know that young children’s brain development is critically important—and researchers learn more every day. Children experience their most profound cognitive, social, and emotional growth in the first eight years of life. Children’s Institute has put together a series to share educational resources and the latest news from experts about young children’s growing brains and how their caregivers can support and nurture this growth. In this series,...
Description: Childhood trauma is common. More than two thirds of children in the United States experience a traumatic event or circumstances—such as abuse or neglect, death of a loved one, or community violence—by the time they turn 16. Young children in particular are disproportionately exposed to traumatic events and circumstances. Children exposed to trauma may display heightened aggression, impulsivity, or poor social skills. They often struggle...
Description: Childhood experiences, both positive and negative, have a tremendous impact on future violence victimization and perpetration, and lifelong health and opportunity. As such, early experiences are an important public health issue. Much of the foundational research in this area has been referred to as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs).
Description: What is ARC? ARC is a framework for intervention with youth and families who have experienced multiple and/or prolonged traumatic stress. ARC identifies three core domains that are frequently impacted among traumatized youth, and which are relevant to future resiliency. Designed to be applied flexibly across child- and family-serving systems, ARC provides a theoretical framework, core principles of intervention, and a guiding structure for providers. ARC is designed for youth from early...
Description: Childhood trauma isn’t something you just get over as you grow up. Pediatrician Nadine Burke Harris explains that the repeated stress of abuse, neglect and parents struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues has real, tangible effects on the development of the brain. This unfolds across a lifetime, to the point where those who’ve experienced high levels of trauma are at triple the risk for heart disease and lung cancer. An impassioned plea for pediatric medicine to...
Description: Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC) Attachment, Regulation and Competency (ARC) (Trauma Center at Justice Resource Institute) Child Trauma Toolkit for Educators (2008) (The National Child Traumatic Stress Network, NCTSN) Enhancing and Practicing Executive Function Skills with Children from Infancy to Adolescence (Activities Guide) Handbook: The Heart of Learning: Compassion, Resiliency, and Academic Success (Compassionate Schools: The Heart of...
Description: The SpecialQuest Multimedia Training Library was designed to strengthen the inclusion of young children with disabilities and their families in programs serving infants, toddlers, and preschoolers. The Library includes four learning modules. Each module contains a presenter’s guide, training scripts, handouts (in English and Spanish), and videos (in English, and with English and Spanish captioning). The materials can be used in a variety of professional development settings. They...
Description: Families are the enduring presence in the lives of young children with disabilities. This volume contains activities to support early care and education staff and families in developing positive relationships that support collaboration and family leadership. Session 1: Creating Bright Futures (Building Relationships with Families) Session 2: Listening to Families Session 3: When Concerns Arise: Learning from Families' Experiences Session 4: Getting...
Description: For parents, daycare providers, and early educators, new research describes a simple and powerful way to build children’s brains: talk with them, early and often. A study in Psychological Science shows how conversation — the interplay between a parent or caregiver and a child — ignites the language centers in a child’s brain. It’s the first study to show a relationship between the words children hear at home and the growth of their neural processing capacities...
Description: Evaluation is an essential beginning step in the special education process for a child with a disability. Before a child can receive special education and related services for the first time, a full and individual initial evaluation of the child must be conducted to see if the child has a disability and is eligible for special education. Informed parent consent must be obtained before this evaluation may be conducted.
Description: Wherever you work, children come to you with gifts, curiosity, challenges, and needs.  They are small wonders, to be sure, and as full of diversity as society itself. And because disability is a natural part of life, it’s also likely that some of your little ones may have a disability or a developmental delay that can impact their learning and growth. As a child care provider or preschool teacher, you may even be among the first to notice a child’s difficulties or...
Description: The birth of a child is an exciting, life-changing event. A beautiful new baby comes to your house, family, and neighborhood. It is a time for celebration. But what happens when this new child has a disability? What if there are health problems? What if, as time goes by, it seems as if the child isn’t learning and progressing as quickly or easily as other children? What do you do? CPIR offers a suite of resource pages that can help you find answers and people who can...
Description: The education of children with disabilities is a top national priority. Our nation’s special education law, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), sets high standards for their achievement and guides how special help and services are made available in schools to address their individual needs.
Description: Cerebral palsy—also known as CP—is a condition caused by injury to the parts of the brain that control our ability to use our muscles and bodies. Cerebral means having to do with the brain. Palsy means weakness or problems with using the muscles. Often the injury happens before birth, sometimes during delivery, or, like Jen, soon after being born. CP can be mild, moderate, or severe. Mild CP may mean a child is clumsy. Moderate CP may mean the child walks with a limp. He or she may...
Description: Kids grow fast, don’t they? And early intervention is designed for children from birth up to age three.  At that point, services under EI end. If the child will need continued support once he or she moves on to preschool, it’s very important to plan ahead so that the transition is smooth.  The resources below will help you do just that.
Description: In almost every early care and education (ECE) program across the country, there are children who have experienced trauma or who will, during their early childhood, experience traumatic events. Trauma in early childhood takes many forms, including abuse or neglect, witnessing violence, and having prolonged separation from or loss of a parent. An extensive body of research has documented the negative impacts of trauma on young children’s behavior, learning, and other long-term school- and...
Description: Assistive technology is any kind of technology that can be used to enhance the functional independence of a person with a disability. Often, for people with disabilities, accomplishing daily tasks such as talking with friends, going to school and work, or participating in recreational activities is a challenge. Assistive Technology (AT) devices are tools to help to overcome those challenges and enable people living with disabilities to enhance their quality of life and lead more independent...
Description: This includes the following chapters: Enhancing Progress for Meaningful Family Engagement in all Aspects of Positive BehavioralInterventions and Supports (PBIS) and Multi-Tiered Systems of Support Family Engagement Foundations: Supporting Children and Families Engaging Families Through School-Wide Positive Behavior Support: Building PartnershipsAcross Multi-Tiered Systems of Support Translating Family Engagement Strategies to Practice in Local Sites Implementing PBIS Promoting Family Engagement...
Description: The mission of Virginia's public education system is to educate students in the fundamental knowledge and academic subjects that they need to become capable, responsible, and self-reliant citizens. Therefore, the mission of the Virginia Board of Education and the superintendent of public instruction, in cooperation with local school boards, is to increase student learning and academic achievement.
Description: The Administration for Children and Families, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administrations, the Administration for Community Living, the Offices of the Assistant Secretary for Health and the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation at HHS have worked together to develop the resources at this website, which was released in January 2017. Visit the site to discover concept papers, discussion questions, examples, and frameworks. Taken together they provide an...
Description: There are numerous studies in early childhood that show that AT can have a positive impact in just a short amount of time, yet research and anecdotal data still show the underutilization of technology. Leverage the ever expanding category of helpful items in the category of assistive technology to help young children with disabilities be included, grow, and learn. We can do this by:• Increasing and/or expanding our understanding of what assistive technology for children ages birth to 5...
Description: The POWER (Parent Organizer With Educational Resources) web app provides parents and families with online resources to answer questions about child development, disabilities, community services, Special Education, diploma options in Virginia and transition to life after high school.  The questions and potential resources are separated into age levels: Early Childhood, Elementary School, Middle School and High School. This project is a collaborative effort between the Parent Resource...