ERIC Number: ED482881
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Dec
Continuity of Caregiver for Infants and Toddlers. ERIC Digest.
Cryer, Debby; Hurwitz, Sarah; Wolery, Mark
Higher-quality child care during the first 3 years of a child's life may have strong and enduring effects on the child's development and well-being. One practice that is theorized to promote higher quality of care is the provision of continuity of caregivers for young children. Continuity of caregivers means that infants and toddlers remain with the same teacher(s) during a significant part, if not all, of their first years in a program. The practice is intended to create a consistent personal relationship between a child and a teacher. This Digest describes the practice as it is usually implemented, discusses the theory and research behind the practice, and offers suggestions for centers interested in offering continuity of caregivers. These suggestions include: (1) recruiting new children to fill in at upper age levels when it is more appropriate to have more children per adult; (2) using mixed-age groupings; and (3) rewarding staff for longevity with the program. The Digest concludes by noting that the actual effects associated with the practice are based only on theoretical assumption and limited research, and that center staff may require more compelling evidence that a practice is a better option before undertaking the substantial modifications that are required in making a significant change. (LPP)
Descriptors: Caregiver Child Relationship, Child Care, Child Care Centers, Child Care Effects, Child Care Quality, Child Caregivers, Developmental Continuity, Infant Care, Infants, Toddlers
ERIC Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education, Children's Research Center, University of Illinois, 51 Gerty Drive, Champaign, IL 61820-7469. Tel: 877-275-3277 (Toll Free); Tel: 217-244-4835; Fax: 217-333-3767; Web site: http://ecap.crc.uiuc.edu/info. For full text: http://ecap.crc.uiuc.edu/eecearchive/digests/2003/cryer03.html.
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education, Champaign, IL.