Ecology of professional development and research      in Early Childhood Intervention                                     ...
   Highlight the complex and vibrant process of creating and    implementing a new approach to investigation in Early    ...
1. Developing a Curriculum       2. Implementing the   for Early Childhood              master training  Intervention (mas...
The heartbeat of Early Intervention Today        Family-centered care        Team process        Natural and inclusive env...
EBIFF                   European Passport  University        on ProfessionalCurriculums in      Training in EarlyECI in Po...
2nd and 3rd semester    1st semesterJoint action ofparents,professionals andexperts in ECI fromsixteen Europeancountries  ...
1st semester                                                                               Scientific   Key areas         ...
2nd semester                                                                            Scientific   Key areas            ...
Curriculum for Early Childhood Intervention Master                                                            3 semesters ...
Although the curriculum was built with care, attentivenessand shared intentionally, we believe its true meaning couldonly ...
24 female students                            Recognizing that the                                                        ...
   Maintaining a safe environment, encouraging students    to share their ideas and feelings in a warm atmosphere    of a...
   I think this Masters was thought with much rigor, with a sequence    that gave us the chance to internalize knowledge ...
   Teachers were very creative and demanding, but at the same time,    close to the students with great willingness to sh...
Building a common language          Using the Guiding Principles of the Touchpoints Modelto empower student’s proficiency ...
Paradigm shiftParadigm shift                 Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005)                                           ...
Paradigm shiftParadigm shift                 Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005)                                           ...
Paradigm shiftParadigm shift                 Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005)         LIGA’s input contributes to a deep...
Paradigm shiftParadigm shift                 Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005)            LIGA’s Early Intervention Team ...
Agrupamento de Escolas de Alapraia | ELI CascaisAPERCIM | ELI MafraAPPDA – Lisboa | CRICERCI Lisboa | ELI Lisboa Oriental...
   The field experience was the best experience of this master! (ms3)   I was fortunate to join a local intervention tea...
Real learning gets to the heart of what it means to be human.Through learning we re-create ourselves. Through learning web...
   In this Post-Bologna Master, students were required to construct an    original and innovative Project in one semester...
What we come to see depends upon what we seek, and whatwe seek depends upon what we know how to say. . . Whateverit is we ...
We must approach one another with genuine curiosity, authentic questions,    and attentive listening.                     ...
Contemporary macro                               research, policy and                             practice perspectives in...
27
Critical/ sustained reflection on previous special education studies (3)                                                  ...
   Undertaking the project, was by far the most difficult and demanding task to    accomplish (ms2)   It was not only ab...
   When I choose the subject of my project I could not imagine the dimensions that    this could have, how I would feel "...
The main findings of this exploratory study, thus point to a personal and   professional impact of this ecological researc...
Certainly the disciplinary and clinical knowledge that you bring to  interactions with families, whether it is health, soc...
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Ecology of professional development and research in eci

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Ecology of professional development and research in Early Childhood Intervention
This paper aims to present the process of creating and implementing a new approach to research in Early Childhood Intervention (EIC), in the context of a Master in Special Education – Early Intervention (2010-2012). In this Post-Bologna master course, students are required to construct an original and innovative Project in one semester (30 ECTS), focused on a concrete need/problem in the ECI domain. The purpose is to expand practical knowledge, rehearse the articulation among theory and practice, and improve concrete professional skills, especially to enhance professional and personal competence, trust and compromise in working collaboratively with families, professionals and communities.
Thus, the theoretical/conceptual framework is embedded in an ecological approach, that considers contemporary macro research, policy and practice perspectives in ECI (comprehensive dimension), the more immediate social/situational environment where projects are contextualized (situated dimension), and the micro/individualized relationship between the supervisor and the student (tutorial dimension).
The presentation will particularly focus the tutorial dimension, and its pedagogy, considering the diversity of students’ characteristics (background knowledge and experience, particular interests and needs). For this purpose, a qualitative methodology was chosen - based on observations, field notes/diaries, and student’s written documentation – seeking to attain a rich and in-depth understanding of the process.
The main findings of this exploratory study indicate a personal and professional impact of the chosen ecological research approach on master students, with direct implications for practice in ECI, namely in what concerns a preventive, collaborative, family focused perspective.

Keywords - Research in ECI; Professional Training and Tutoring in ECI.

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Ecology of professional development and research in eci

  1. 1. Ecology of professional development and research in Early Childhood Intervention 13th September 2012Ana Teresa Brito Nascimento PhDUIED Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa;Fundação Brazelton/Gomes-Pedro para as Ciências do Bebé e da FamíliaAssociate Fellow at CEDAR - University of Warwick Unidade de Investigação Educação e Desenvolvimento
  2. 2.  Highlight the complex and vibrant process of creating and implementing a new approach to investigation in Early Childhood Intervention (ECI), in the context of a Master in Special Education – Early Intervention (2010-2012) 2
  3. 3. 1. Developing a Curriculum 2. Implementing the for Early Childhood master training Intervention (master) Training process and delivery Professional development and research in ECI 4. Impact in all involved 3. Final Research Project and in future in ECI – conceptual and investigation tutorial options 3
  4. 4. The heartbeat of Early Intervention Today Family-centered care Team process Natural and inclusive environments Bruder, 2010 need to implement… comprehensive systems of professional development 4
  5. 5. EBIFF European Passport University on ProfessionalCurriculums in Training in EarlyECI in Portugal Childhood Intervention ESEI Maria UlrichSpecialists in College’s the filed educational and pedagogical principles, values and project 5
  6. 6. 2nd and 3rd semester 1st semesterJoint action ofparents,professionals andexperts in ECI fromsixteen Europeancountries 2nd semester 6
  7. 7. 1st semester Scientific Key areas Curricular Units domain ECTS (1) Fundamental Concepts in Early Childhood Intervention Special Edu. 4 Edu. Biological, psychological and social development Sciences 41 - Recognition/detection Children at risk - establish, biologic and environmental Special Edu. 4 Models and evaluation instruments in ECI Special Edu. 5 Edu Analysis of family systems Sciences 42 - Joining the Family systems and the child with special needs Special Edu. 4family Family Centered Intervention - Individualized Family Special Edu. 5 Service Plan (PIAF) 7
  8. 8. 2nd semester Scientific Key areas Curricular Units domain ECTS (1) Working in a transdisciplinary team – basic processes Special Edu. 43 – Teamwork and dimensions Teams in ECI – functions and roles Special Edu. 54 – Personal Communication and interpersonal relations in ECI Special Edu. 6competences Methodologies of Investigation in Education Special Edu. 55 – PracticalTransfer and Internship in Early Childhood Intervention Special Edu. 10investigation in 3rd semesterEarly Childhood Special Edu.intervention Investigation Project in Early Childhood Intervention 30 8
  9. 9. Curriculum for Early Childhood Intervention Master 3 semesters 180 ECTS Key Areas Curricular Units Main objectives/contents Fundamental Fundamental concepts in Understand the contemporary concepts and organizational contemporary Early Intervention models in EI, and its evolution over time; being aware of the concepts in relationship between the IP best practices, and its theoretical and historical background. Early Beginning of a process of questioning perceptions, feelings, values​​, roles, Childhood behaviors, practices and interactions with families and children, fromBeginning… first Semester Intervention training strategies of self-assessment and reflection – Individual Portfolio 1. Recognition Biological, psychological Holistic Knowledge about child development; knowing and / detection; and socio-emotional understanding children’s characteristics and needs. Development Touchpoints Model, as a fundamental reference for shared understanding with the family of the different stages of child development and strengthening of parenting skills. Children at Risk – Understanding risk and different risk factors and what can established, biological and affect typical development, in terms of bio-psycho-social. environmental Meeting the individualized needs of young children with special needs and their families. Models and assessment Assessment methods and materials tools in Early Intervention Accommodation to (1) children’s developmental and disability-specific characteristics (2) family needs. Parents/family members as partners in the assessment. 9
  10. 10. Although the curriculum was built with care, attentivenessand shared intentionally, we believe its true meaning couldonly be reached by being able to meet students with thesame consideration, respect, responsibility and expectationwe want them to meet children and their families, withwhom they will work in the future. 10
  11. 11. 24 female students Recognizing that the increasing diversity Age - 23 to 53 of ages, experience and professional status Initial training - students bring with them 24 Early Childhood Educators is a challenge and… an 10 students with complementary studies opportunity! in Special Education Years of experience - Between 0 and 25 years All master students were there with a huge desire to Less than 5 – 2 students "drink" all the information and acquire as muchFrom 5 to 9 years – 12 students From 10 to 14 – 8 students knowledge and experience as From 21 to 25 years – 2 students we could… (ms1) 11
  12. 12.  Maintaining a safe environment, encouraging students to share their ideas and feelings in a warm atmosphere of acceptance, respect, understanding and trust between all involved. Becoming "part" of the environment, as a participant observer, connecting subjects and people in a positive, enthusiastic, but discrete way… 12
  13. 13.  I think this Masters was thought with much rigor, with a sequence that gave us the chance to internalize knowledge and adjust it, opening our horizons and changing forever our vision towards a child, a family or an unknown situation. It was transforming and at times disconcerting when we were confronted with issues that questioned almost everything we had for granted.(ms8) I believe methodologies of teaching and learning were especially appropriate, because they made each student sensitive to the importance of knowing how to understand, respect and listen to each family. On the other hand, they provided technical and analytical tools that allowed appropriate assessment and intervention. (ms6) 13
  14. 14.  Teachers were very creative and demanding, but at the same time, close to the students with great willingness to share our experience and our doubts. Seminars with families and professionals were exceptionally interesting, of an inexplicable richness...(ms2) Students enriched not only the course contents but also enabled an important exchange of experiences, leading to reflection on existing practices. Intense moments were experienced inside and outside the classroom, rich in the emotional, relational and professional levels. (ms1) I emphasize the excellent level of cooperation between the School and the partners involved and its innovative character, with a very comprehensive and practice-oriented programme. (s10) 14
  15. 15. Building a common language Using the Guiding Principles of the Touchpoints Modelto empower student’s proficiency to work together with families and children ©2005 Brazelton Touchpoints Center TM 15
  16. 16. Paradigm shiftParadigm shift Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005) Touchpoints Model Paradigm shift From… To… Deficit Model Positive Model Linear Development Multidimensional Development Prescriptive Collaborative Objective Involvement Empathic Involvement Strict Discipline Boundaries Flexible Discipline Boundaries Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005) 16
  17. 17. Paradigm shiftParadigm shift Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005) Touchpoints Guiding Principles Value and understand the relationship between you and the parent Use the behavior of the child as your language Value passion wherever you find it Focus on the parent-child relationship Look for opportunities to support mastery Recognize the beliefs and biases that you bring to the interaction Be willing to discuss matters that go beyond your traditional role Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005) 17
  18. 18. Paradigm shiftParadigm shift Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005) LIGA’s input contributes to a deeper reflection on the master contents - more informed, critical and sensitive – namely by the application and translation of the concepts and principles studied in the everyday practices with children and their families. 18
  19. 19. Paradigm shiftParadigm shift Source: Brazelton & Sparrow (2005) LIGA’s Early Intervention Team include individuals from multiple professional disciplines (physiatrists, social workers, psychologists, speech therapists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, ect.) and Families. The fundamental role of families in the delivery of training activities is one of the major challenges of the master. 19
  20. 20. Agrupamento de Escolas de Alapraia | ELI CascaisAPERCIM | ELI MafraAPPDA – Lisboa | CRICERCI Lisboa | ELI Lisboa Oriental CERCI Moita Barreiro | ELI Moita ELI OdemiraEquipa de Intervenção Precoce de OdivelasEquipa de IP do Agrupamento dos Olivais | ELI Lisboa OrientalEscolas D. Carlos I – Sintra Fundação LIGA | LisboaOs Francisquinhos | ELI - Norte de Lisboa ELI’s – Local Intervention Teams 20
  21. 21.  The field experience was the best experience of this master! (ms3) I was fortunate to join a local intervention team that tries to apply many of the key contents of ECI, which were addressed throughout the training. They shared their practices, their doubts, fears and joys. All I had learned during training was being experienced – valuing the family, their capacities, promoting autonomy and self-esteem, increasing their skills, so that they were increasingly able to care for their children and less dependent on services.(ms1) Observing and experiencing the daily routine of an ECI professional was probably one of the most interesting and ambiguous experiences throughout my academic career. If on one hand it was fantastic to go to the field with an ECI professional, on the other it was frustrating to see the limitations imposed by the environment that surrounds all her work. With this practitioner I learned training in this area is essential and indispensable. (ms8) 21
  22. 22. Real learning gets to the heart of what it means to be human.Through learning we re-create ourselves. Through learning webecome able to do something we never were able to do.Through learning we repercieve the world and our relationshipto it. Through learning we extend our capacity to create, to bepart of the generative process of life. There is within each of usa deep hunger for this type of learning. Senge,2005 22
  23. 23.  In this Post-Bologna Master, students were required to construct an original and innovative Project in one semester (30ECTS), focused on of a concrete need/ problem in the ECI domain. The intention is to expand practical knowledge, experiment the results of articulating theory and practice, and improve concrete professional skills in ECI, therefore increasing professional and personal competence, trust and compromise in working in a collaborative way with families, professionals and communities. 23
  24. 24. What we come to see depends upon what we seek, and whatwe seek depends upon what we know how to say. . . Whateverit is we think we know is a function of a transaction betweenthe qualities of the world we cannot know in their pure,nonmediated form, and the frames of reference, personal skills,and individual histories we bring to them. Eisner, 1992 24
  25. 25. We must approach one another with genuine curiosity, authentic questions, and attentive listening. Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot, 2010• The tutorial guidance was decisive not only for all the theoretical support and help in compliance with rules and organization of the whole research process, but also for all the right words of encouragement, in good and less good times. (ms9) The tutorial guidance was featured by the rigor, engagement, commitment, understanding, unconditional support, patience, enthusiasm, sharing, collaboration... (ms10) I felt that the guidance given, led to a sense of individual journey of research and to sustain a constant need to not lose the meaning of what I was looking for in my process of investigation. (ms11) 25
  26. 26. Contemporary macro research, policy and practice perspectives in ECI ComprehensiveThe heartbeat of ECI Today dimension•Family-centered care Social/situational environment where•Team process projects are•Natural and inclusive contextualizedenvironments Situated Bruder, 2010 dimension Master’s contents and processes; relationship between the supervisor and the student Tutorial dimension 26
  27. 27. 27
  28. 28. Critical/ sustained reflection on previous special education studies (3) Inclusion of a Child with ASD – peer group impact (1) Language promotion in ECI and Early Childhood Education and care (1) Natural and inclusive environments Touchpoints Reflective Practice (2) Team work Educators perspectives about ECI (1) The preventive and supportive role of early childhood educators in ECI - Family centered approach working with families (4) Listening to families (5) Working with families (1) 28
  29. 29.  Undertaking the project, was by far the most difficult and demanding task to accomplish (ms2) It was not only about achieving a deeper theory knowledge on early intervention but also about the importance of research itself (ms4) The research project meant growing and learning about how to "read" reality, and how to write with a different accuracy (ms9) To embrace this project it was essential to involve all actors and be available for change. (ms3) The research project surprised me in all its phases, becoming a real challenge. It was extremely engaging, enriching and transforming. It was difficult to deal with aspects which call into ethics and personal and professional values . . . The research project gave me the opportunity to reflect my practice and improve aspects of the intervention. (ms10) 29
  30. 30.  When I choose the subject of my project I could not imagine the dimensions that this could have, how I would feel "richer“ with this new knowledge… Today I believe that ECI is a particularly demanding professional area – it asks for you to work with your heart, bringing together all the knowledge to every child, from every family. (ms17) The master allowed us to stop and reflect on our educational practice and opened our horizons to a new family centered paradigm which inspires us to a universal model of education, expanding from the domain of Early Intervention to the field of Early Childhood Education. (ms18) The investigation process is the end of a hard but above all rewarding journey. Its getting to the top of the mountain and be marveled by the vast landscape that, after all, had for so long been around us… (ms1) 30
  31. 31. The main findings of this exploratory study, thus point to a personal and professional impact of this ecological research approach on master students, with direct implications for practice in ECI, namely in what concerns a preventive, collaborative, family focused perspective.Impact in future investigation – post-doctoral researchTraining and personnel preparation in Early Childhood Intervention - a researchon training conducted in the UK and Portugal, in order to outline RecommendedPractices for high quality training and professional development in this area. 31
  32. 32. Certainly the disciplinary and clinical knowledge that you bring to interactions with families, whether it is health, social work, or child development, should be utilized to the fullest extent. It is what has brought you to work with this family. However, the manner in which it is used is critical in whether that expertise has any true effect. It can be used in a manner that affirms a child and familys competence, or in a manner that diminishes that competence. Edgar Shein, 2009 Undressing the bias of being the experts and technicians, with whom we identified ourselves in early training, was undoubtedly the most difficult but most important thing to gain in order to achieve real quality in Early Intervention. (ms4) 32
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