Imua Family Services is an early childhood provider since 1947 and yet we ourselves continue to grow and develop even within our own practices as Early Interventionists. Over the years we have moved from center-based services to supporting families in natural learning environments. We began to understand that using the family’s/child’s interests, routines, rituals and priorities was the venue for promoting the child’s existing abilities and learning new skills.
When a family learns that their child is deaf or hard of hearing, may have a speech delay other developmental delay or other disability, they enter a whole new world. This unfamiliar world is full of new terminology, paperwork, evaluations, and professionals that they did not know existed. The role of the early interventionist at Imua Family Services is to help families navigate this new territory by providing emotional support, accurate information, and necessary resources. Supporting families during this time requires an interventionist with strong interpersonal abilities and specialized knowledge and skills. Our team consists of Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Language Pathologists, Special Instruction, General Educators and Family Trainers along with a Care Coordinator to help assist the entire process for each family.
Parent Coaching interactions can be used by practitioners during early intervention home visits to help parents develop their abilities to interact with their children in ways that support their child’s development. Coaching can be used during natural family routines as a way to help families identify strategies, practice them during visits, reflect on their interactions with their children, problem solve challenges, and receive supportive feedback.
Parent Coaching allows for each families own cultural background to resonate with the practices that already exist in the home. Here is just an example of what Parent Coaching in Early Intervention might include:
Joint Planning: At the beginning of the visit, you and your Imua provider talk about the plan and goals for your child. You share with your provider what you tried with your child, and what did and didn’t work.
Observation: Your Imua provider watches how you and your child play and interact in the things that you do every day. Your provider might show you a strategy to use, and then they might ask you to try it.
Action: Your Imua provider helps you practice new ways to help your child meet his/her goals as you go about your daily routine. In between visits, you can put into action those strategies you came up with together.
Reflection: Your Imua provider asks questions about what you’ve already tried with your child and what is typical for your family.
Feedback: Your Imua provider listens to you and you both discuss what has or has not worked, and why it has or has not worked.
Joint Planning: Your provider shares information with you and helps you figure out what strategies will best help your child meet his/her goals. At the end of the visit, you and your provider come up with a plan together that says what you want to try with your child in between visits, and you schedule your next visit.