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JULY 31, 2017
Periods of Development
Lincoln Elementary School student population consists of over
seven hundred children, ranging in ages from four to twelve
years old.
This age group is primarily in their school aged middle
childhood years of ages six to twelve, but it also includes the
final two years of the Toddler/Preschool early childhood stage.
According to Piaget, the children in our school fall into the
preoperational and concrete operational stages of cognitive
Preoperational Stage: Two of the more notable cognitive
milestones for this age group include playing make believe and
having the ability to sort shapes and colors. Pretend play is an
important milestone because it helps the child express feelings
while integrating elements of cognition and emotions (Kaufman,
Concrete Operational Stage: Cognitively, children in this age
bracket witness growth in the speed of their thought processing
skills, and their memorization abilities become more advanced
(Mossler, 2014).
My role as a Child Development Professional
As a training and curriculum specialist I have two
responsibilities. The first is to implement an
effective curriculum for a before and after
school program that meets our students
developmental needs. In addition to curriculum,
I am also responsible for training the staff on how
to interact with students and their families.
Supporting Rationale
*Throughout the course of my academic journey I have learned a
vast amount of knowledge regarding child development and
working with families.
*As I progress into the next stage of my career, as Training and
Curriculum Specialist, I will use what I have learned as a child and
youth provider and my experience at Ashford to become a
professional in the field of Child Development.
*My rationale for this presentation is to demonstrate the periods of
development in Lincoln Elementary school , the scope of a childs
life through Bronfenbrenners Mesosystem, and why parental
involvement is so important and how to increase it.
*According to the text (2013), parental involvement is crucial and
allows for families to keep tabs on their childs progress,
communicate with teachers, and ensure that that the child is
enrolled in challenging, well-taught classes; which in turn promotes
academic achievement and motivation (Berk, 2013, Sec. 15.3,
Para. 49).
Bronfenbrenner's Mesosystem
According to Bronfenbrenner, the people in a childs life that they
interact with regularly make up their microsystem. For example, a
childs microsystem would typically consist of their family, teachers,
friends, and other children in their class. Basically, anyone who directly
interacts with the child directly (Wardle & Fitzpatrick, 2016).
All of these relationships have a profound impact on the
development of the child but they are not isolated and independent
of each other. Bronfenbrenner believed that the childs Mesosystem is
the interaction between these microsystems (Wardle & Fitzpatrick,
Children are continuously impacted by each microsystem they
belong in. Each microsystem can influence the next. For instance, if a
child is belittled by members of their family they will likely struggle with
confidence in a school setting. A childs mesosystem serves as an
important framework that must be cultivated to ensure he or she is
receiving similar experiences that help their development. An
effective Mesosystem also provides a level of transparency about
potential issues or obstacles the child may be dealing with in one of
their microsystems (Wardle & Fitzpatrick, 2016).
Epsteins 6 Types of Involvement
Professor of sociology, Joyce Epstein,
crafted an in depth and interconnected
framework that was designed to act as
an outline for creating family and school
partnership programs in a childs
education. This blueprint in cultivating
involvement and interaction between
parents with a wide array of other
members in childs microsystem is laid out
in six steps parenting, communicating,
volunteering, learning at home, decision
making, and collaborating with the
community (Ramos, 2017).
Epsteins first type of involvement focuses on
helping parents contribute to their childs education
(Epstein, n.d.).
This step is designed to help create a home
atmosphere that helps to facilitate and support the
childs role of being a student (Epstein, n.d.).
Programs that assist families in providing basic
health and nutritional care could be implemented
for low socio-economic families (Epstein, n.d.).
Another way to involve and assist parents would be
to provide ESL courses for the families of
predominately Hispanic schools such as Lincoln
Elementary school.
Communication is another one of the types of parental involvement
highlighted by Epstein.
This type of involvement includes open lines of communication that
inform the parents about their childrens performance in school (Epstein,
Effective communication also informs the parents about any programs
they could utilize to help their children in their academic endeavors.
In a real world setting effective communication could take the form of
monthly newsletters that inform the parents about how they can
participate in the class or what their child is currently studying (Epstein,
n.d.). Newsletters are also great for letting parents know about any
programs that could aid in support of their childs education.
*Epstein highlights volunteering as another type
of parent involvement approach that can be
utilized by educators to help facilitate
participation and support from the parents
(Epstein, n.d.).
*Volunteers could also be asked to work with
students or help teachers prepare the classroom
for the next lesson. They could also help out in
the more traditional role of helping out on
*When parents get involved in their childs
school or child care program through
volunteering, it will leave them with an
understanding and familiarity of the teachers
positon. Volunteer work will also give families
clarity into activities and projects that are
brought home with their child (Epstein, n.d.).
Learning at home
The learning at home type of involvement
is based on giving families the tools to help
their child completing homework, instilling
positive attitudes towards education, and
narrowing the chasm between the school
setting and a home environment (Epstein,
Including families in the planning of
academic goals is a great starting point for
motivating families to diligently ensure their
child completes their homework.
Assigning homework that requires parental
participation is another great way of
ensuring that homework is being
completed with the supervision and support
of the parent (Epstein, n.d.).
Decision Making

*Including parents in the certain decision making processes of the school is an effective type
of involvement emphasized by Epstein.
*Parents who feel their voices are being heard in regards to school policies tend to develop a
sense of ownership and connection with school (Epstein, n.d.).
*An added benefit of being included in the decision making process is the awareness of
certain policies and rationale behind curriculum choices implemented by school (Epstein,
*The great way to incorporate parents in the decision making process of the school is to
encourage involvement in District-level councils and committees (Epstein, n.d.).

Collaborating with Community

Collaborating with community is the sixth type of involvement
that Epstein suggests in cultivating parental involvement . It is
founded in identifying and integrating local resources that
could benefit the student and their family (Epstein, n.d.).
This type of involvement allows similar families to interact with
each other and build social networks while participating in
community activities (Epstein, n.d.).
Building awareness in the role the school plays in the
community is another benefit of collaborating with the
community (Epstein, n.d.).
Perhaps the greatest benefit of collaborating with community
is the opportunity it provides family to obtain needed services.
Exposing families to services they may need can be
accomplished by creating partnership with local agencies
(Epstein, n.d.). Once the partnership is established it is up to
the educator to inform the students families about the benefits
of utilizing such services.
Berk, L. E. (2013). Child development. (9th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.
Epstein, J. (n.d.). Epsteins framework of six types of involvement. Retrieved from
Kaufman, S. B. (2012, March 06). The need for pretend play in child development.
Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/beautiful-
Mossler, R. (2014). Child and Adolescent Development. (2nd ed) [Electronic version]
Ramos, M. (2017). Epsteins six types of parent involvement. Retrieved from
Wardle, F., & Fitzpatrick, T. (2016). Children & families: Understanding behavior &
dynamics. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.