Friday, February 24, 2017

Friday Feature: Thriving as an Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education Professional

How many of you have experienced uncertainty or burnout in your work in EI? Whether you're a new or experienced EI practitioner, or a supervisor providing mentoring or performance feedback, here's an article that provides some ideas on supporting professional growth:

Your H.E.R.O.: Thriving as an Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education Professional (LaRocco & Sopko, 2016)

"H=HOPE: Identifying Professional Practice Goals and Pathways for Getting There
E=EFFICACY: Reflecting on Your Confidence to Succeed Professionally
R=RESILIENCE: Bouncing Back and Beyond Professionally
O=OPTIMISM: Being a Realistic and Flexible Professional"

Some things to think about... maybe as part of self-reflection, peer-to-peer reflection, or reflective supervision:

"1. Think about your professional practice and aspirations. Identify a Division for Early Childhood (DEC) Recommended Practices area you want to be better at or improve upon (e.g., family capacity building, assessment, instruction).

2. Write out two or three related goals that are personally valuable, reasonably challenging, and include a clear beginning and ending point." (more steps on p. 5)

"1. In what specific DEC Recommended Practices area do you feel very confident (e.g., family capacity building, assessment, instruction)?

2. What are some of the specific tasks in which you engage in to be effective in those areas? What enables you to be successful? Identify three or four of the most critical tasks." (more on p. 6)

The section on OPTIMISM resonated with me -- it asks us to reflect on a positive and negative professional situation, identify which factors were in our control and which were not, and think about how our actions were the same or different. (p. 8)

For the full article:

Remember, as a DEC member you can receive or electronically access the Young Exceptional Children journal for free!

Not a DEC member yet? Find more information HERE.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Working with Interpreters in Early Intervention

How many of you work or have worked with interpreters in Early Intervention?

Here are some of my "take-aways" from reading the Young Exceptional Children article, Guidelines for Collaborating with Interpreters in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (Acar & Blasco, 2016):

"1. Ask parent, "Is there anything I can explain better?" instead of "Do they understand?" (--> what a difference the choice of words can make!)

2. Understand that the work of an interpreter is mentally and physically challenging. (--> this was a good one... it can be easy to forget!)

3. Regularly check with the interpreter to see the tone and pace of the communication."

Great reminders! Read many more strategies and best practices here:

P.S. The Young Exceptional Children journal is an excellent resource that you can receive for free as a Division for Early Childhood (DEC) member!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017


Welcome to the online community of the Division for Early Childhood's Early Intervention Special Interest Group (DEC EI SIG)!

It is our hope that you visit this space to find new information about EI practices, learn about upcoming EI SIG events, and interact with your fellow SIG participants.

We're glad you're here!

Nicole Edwards and Michelle Gatmaitan,
DEC EI SIG Co-Leaders

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Follow us on Twitter: @DECEISIG

Telepractice Resources

Many DEC Early Intervention Community of Practice (CoP) members have asked for telepractice resources as temporary changes in how we provide...