During the week of October 19, ACNJ and partners hosted Celebrate Babies Week! 2020's theme was “Embracing the Essential Role of the Caregiver.” During the pandemic, our caregivers have been essential workers, supporting the social and emotional growth of our babies every day during a stressful time. Let’s celebrate the important role caregivers play in fostering the emotional health of babies every day! The strong relationships they form early in life will have a lasting effect on how they grow up as adults.
Webinar: On Friday, October 23rd, ACNJ held a webinar with Dr. Gerard Costa, Director of the Center for Autism and Early Childhood Mental Health at Montclair State University, as he discusses the science behind the essential role of the caregiver in all aspects of infant and toddler development, health and well-being. View the recording.
Additional Resources from Dr. Costa:
- PowerPoint Presentation from Dr. Gerard Costa
- Playlist: Regulating, Relating Caring and Learning (English/Spanish)
- Mental Health in Early Intervention: Achieving Unity in Principles and Practice by Gilbert M. Foley and Jane D. Hochman - Chapter 5 - "Mental Health Principles, Practices, Strategies, and Dynamics Pertinent to Early Intervention Practitioners"
- "Reconceptualizing Training as Professional Formation in the Fields of Autism and Infant Mental Health" by Dr. Gerard Costa
- A Practical Guide to Reflective Supervision - Chapter 9 - "What Staff Development Activities Can Be Used to Build Reflective Capacity?"
Help Spread the Word
You can still help by sharing posts and graphics. Remember to use hashtags whenever possible. Use the hashtag #CaregiversAreEssential to follow along and share/retweet posts highlighting infant mental health!
|One of the guiding principles of infant mental health focuses on early brain development. Everyday interactions can have a big impact! Learn about "serve and return," an easy way for caregivers to support brain growth! https://youtu.be/KNrnZag17Ek|
|Did you know that our brains are wired for relationships? Learn about relational, social + emotional development. Check out this great resource from @ZEROTOTHREE on how you can support young children in building relationships. https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/227-tips-on-helping-your-child-build-relationships|
|Stress and trauma in early childhood can have lasting effects but a caregiver can help mitigate impacts. #CaregiversAreEssential|
Caregivers play a critical role in reducing the impact of stress and trauma. Check out this infographic by @montclairstatecaecmh on simple strategies you can use to support young children! #CaregiversAreEssential
|Social and emotional development does not happen in a vacuum but in the context of the family and community. Check out this video about supporting cultural traditions within a #childcare system. https://youtu.be/quy4Dsf_Qm0|
|Today is all about reflection. To best support our babies, we as adults must reflect upon our own experiences. Are you a professional caring for young children and in need of space to reflect?|
Celebrate Babies Week is an initiative of the Association for Infant Mental Health to bring awareness to the needs of our youngest children.
Thank You to Our Amazing Partners:
NJAEYC: @NJAEYC (Facebook/Twitter)
NJ-AIMH: @NJAIMH (Facebook/Twitter)
MSU CAECMH: @montclairstatecaecmh (Facebook)
CITE: @Coalition.Infant.Toddler.Educators (Facebook), @CITEprez (Twitter)
SPAN: @parentadvocacynetwork (Facebook), @SPANadvocacy (Twitter)
NJ Breastfeeding Coalition: @New Jersey Breastfeeding Coalition (Facebook), @NJBFCoalition (Twitter)