Home Visiting Blog

Aug 03 2015

Parents as Teachers Helps Raise Healthy, Successful Children

By, Donna L. Carter. Arkansas Home Visiting Network Training Institute

The Arkansas Home Visiting Network includes representatives from home visiting programs and stakeholders throughout the state. This third in a series of articles features the Parents as Teachers program.

Parents as Teachers is a non-profit, early childhood family support and parent education home-visiting model, designed to help parents raise healthy, successful children by giving them hands-on support and effective learning tools during the critical first years of life.

The Parents as Teachers model focuses on early childhood development and education (for children age prenatal through the first year in kindergarten) and the role parents play as the first and most influential teachers and health providers for their children.  Service begins prenatally and continues through the kindergarten year with families enrolling at any point along the continuum.  

Home Visits

The Parents as Teachers family support approach focuses on three main areas: parent-child interaction, development-centered parenting and whole family well-being.

Parent Educators usually meet with a family in the comfort of their own home, and visits may include health and developmental screenings, parent-child engagement in age appropriate activities, talk about real life parenting topics, parenting tips, key community resources and offers to connect families to other families, neighbors and groups to build support.

The length of time that families are supported varies and is individualized to fit family needs. In general, parents can expect two visits a month with a minimum of 12 visits annually (the average is 24 visits per year). 

According to years of evaluations, research and data, the Parents as Teachers approach works, and the results are powerful. Read an Arkansas success story here.

Education and Advocacy

In addition to family support, Parents as Teachers also develops research-informed curricula and materials that address the developmental needs of children with special needs and trains early childhood educators and professionals across the country.

The training programs cover a variety of topics to help raise healthy kids and get them ready for school, including special needs children, responsible fatherhood, teenage parenting, and more. Parents as Teachers trained educators are among the most highly skilled in the field.

Parents as Teachers also advocates for children and families, helping shape public policy to increase access to early learning, child development, and education at the federal, state, and community levels.

More Information

Parents as Teachers partners with a variety of affiliates and organizations to deliver services, such as school districts, family resource centers, faith communities, hospitals and health clinics and government agencies.

Find out how to get Parents as Teachers services by visiting parentsasteachers.org and in Arkansas: www.arhomevisiting.org.

 

 Correction: The Parents as Teachers model is delivered through 1.7 million personal visits each year. 

 

Funding for this blog is made possible by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number D89MC23141 of the Affordable Care Act - Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program awarded to the Arkansas Department of Health. The information or content and conclusions expressed in this material or by speakers and moderators are those of the author(s) and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government.


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