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One Size Doesn't Fit All in - Collaborations with Parents

by Deborah E. Eaton
March/April 2000
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/one-size-doesnt-fit-all-in-collaborations-with-parents/5013244/

As we move into a new century, we must rethink the established standard of working with parents, a one-size-fits-all mentality, and embrace a new model of collaboration where one size fits some but certainly not all of our children and families. This follows every tenet we hold sacred in early childhood, including the uniqueness of each child and family.

Collaborations with parents must change because the nature of today's family has changed. We have dual-parent families, single-parent families, stepfamilies, blended families, and grandparents and other extended family members raising children. We have adopted families, foster families, families with two mommies, and families with two daddies. We also have families with different cultural and linguistic needs. I think it is safe to say that we have many different kinds of parents and families with many different kinds of needs.

Accepting and respecting differences is at the very core of collaborating with parents. Each and every parent who walks through our doors will have a different set of values, beliefs, goals, customs, and needs. We will be able to identify with some of these differences but not all of them. Our challenge as early childhood professionals will be to establish a common ground that will ...

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