Child, Youth, and Family Studies, Department of

 

Date of this Version

2009

Citation

Early Childhood Services, Special issue on Managing Young Children’s Behavior, 3(4), 301-322.

Comments

Copyright © 2009 Plural Publishing, Inc.

Abstract

To advance the field of children’s services, implementation and generalization studies are needed to help us reveal the inner workings of intervention projects and how they do (or do not) achieve their outcomes. This paper provides a case study of Head Start teachers’ uptake of the Getting Ready school readiness intervention, intended to strengthen professionals’ capacity to support parental engagement in young children’s development and learning. The qualitative method of document review was used in scrutinizing home visit reports and classroom newsletters as a source of authentic evidence about teachers’ implementation and generalization of an early intervention model. Home visits were a focus of training and coaching, and the analysis provided strong evidence of treatment group teachers implementing Getting Ready strategies of collaborative planning and problem-solving with parents around academic learning and social-emotional goals. In contrast, newsletters were not the focus of the intervention; their analysis provided clear evidence of spontaneous change (hence, generalization) made by teachers on their own as they sought to strengthen home-school collaboration, form strong and trusting relationships, and spotlight and acknowledge child and parent competence. Beyond finding evidence of teachers’ uptake and generalization of the Getting Ready strategies, the study suggests the utility of analyzing teachers’ everyday documents to uncover patterns of behavior change of teachers seeking to implement an early childhood school readiness intervention.