Blog - Early Childhood

Special Event

TASK: Apps for Early Learning for Early Start ( Ages 0-3)

TASK: Aplicaciones Para El Aprendizaje Temprano para los de Inicio temprano (0-3 años)


Presented by TASK in Collaboration with Southeast Family Resource Center 

Join us as we demonstrate apps that facilitate early learning for young children with special needs, ages 0 to 5. Apps will include preschool concepts, early literacy, fine motor skills and more!  

Blog Nancy Spiegel

Providing Non-Residential Services During a Pandemic

Our HRC Service Providers who provide non-residential services had to work quickly after congregate service settings were ordered to close, to find alternative ways to provide services to our clients and families on a virtual platform. Thank you to Service Providers for sharing your creative service delivery examples.

Blog Monique Leotaud

Screen Time While In Survival Mode

A lot of parents are currently in survival mode and that means doing things as a parent that they hadn’t planned on doing. For a lot of parents, that is letting your child have screen time or an increased amount of screen time. The first link below is to a great article to let you know that if your child is having screen time there are ways to make it quality screen time that they can learn from. I hope this article provides new tips for how to incorporate screen time, if necessary, and how to remove any guilt you may be feeling.

Blog Monique Leotaud

Fun Activities to Do At Home

Here are some fun ideas for activities to do with your kids with items you may have at home

Egg carton:

Sort materials such as beads, buttons, bottle caps, etc. Sort by color like in the picture below or sort by size, small items go in the egg slots and big items go on the other side. [Works on strengthening finger muscles and ability to differentiate items by color or size.]

Blog Kathie Sarles

Relationships Matter

Caring for our children has many facets, but what really matters is that we give our children a feeling of safety, and a sense of belonging. As Mona Delahooke, PhD tells us, “We need to begin with the “birthplace of emotional growth: the relationship”

Blog Kathie Sarles

Traditions: Refection of Our Values

At this time of year I often reflect on my traditions, and what they mean to me and my family. Traditions connect one generation with another, bringing shared family values into our daily lives. Our Children learn what we hold dear, what is important and necessary to us, through our incorporation of these values into our home life. Families are as unique as the people within them, and traditions exemplify these differences.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Why Won’t My Toddler Share?

Before a child can share there are many skills they must develop, and many interactions they need to have. Sharing is a skill that is not mastered until preschool, as it involves others rather than the self. Toddlers are all about “me” as they interact with the world and relate to their caregivers. Babies explore the world from the inside out. As they mature and develop their connections are made from sucking, smelling, touching, seeing and hearing those around them. Caregivers respond to the baby’s actions, and that give and take is the beginning of their learning about themselves.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Setting Limits for Your Child

Why Set Limits?

Children need to feel safe and secure in order to learn. When a child has no boundaries, he/she feels out of control or anxious. Boundaries are not punitive, they are comforting and offer a place to try new things and explore safely. John Medina author of Brain Rules for Babies states, “The need for safety is so powerful, that the presence of rules themselves often communicates safety to children.” Parents easily set boundaries for infants, but find it harder once the child is mobile and becoming more independent.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Summer Sensations


Summer is here! Older children are out of school and younger children are excited and/ or anxious to have their sibling home. The entire family may also be looking forward to a vacation away from the daily norm. Whatever it is, very young children can feel the change in the air and may act in ways we do not expect. Being a prepared parent can help us get through a long, hot summer!
In previous articles I have written about creating routines and limits that help children stay regulated so that they can fully participate in the day. In this article I want to offer some ideas that can be used to help fill a day when the regular routines have been broken. Summer is a great time to offer new and exciting sensory based activities while at home. Traveling is another potentially tough activity, so being prepared by having a Magic Bag of tricks helps maintain stability at an otherwise chaotic time. Below I will offer some suggestions for sensory fun at home and ideas for magic bags to take with you. Thinking ahead and planning most of the details will aide in your child’s overall behavior.
Sensory Play: (Please note some children have a hard time with getting dirty, with loud noises or with too much stimulation in general. You know your child; some of these activities may take time for your child to accept. Offering it without expectation or with some adaptation might be warranted.)

Blog Kathie Sarles

Empathy: The Key to Positive Relationships

Developing empathy is a process that starts at infancy and continues throughout our life. Taking on another’s perspective can be difficult at times even for an adult, but nearly impossible for a toddler. Empathy needs to be modeled by the caring and trusted adults in a child’s life. Observing a parent showing genuine interest and concern to another family- member, enables the child to experience empathy by noting their parent’s behavior.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Toileting: What’s the Fuss?

This is a REPOST but worth a read….

There are many good parenting articles, blogs and DVDs that address this very natural and routine milestone,( look for these in our resource center). There are also many sage and “helpful” relatives and friends that offer advice on this issue. When it comes right down to it there are only 2 people who matter in this specific skill development: the child and the caregiver (s). It is up to you and your child to decide when you are ready and what method to use.
Below are the things to think about and the steps that might be helpful on this short, but intense journey.
Is your child ready? His chronological age is not a factor in this specific checklist. If he/ she is between 2 and 3 it is a good time to look for the signs.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Breathe in the New Year!

Parenting is hard enough, but add in the challenge of a child with delay or disability and your tough job becomes almost insurmountable. Steady breathing, and a calm demeanor are not often attributed to parents of young children. Our children actually take our breath away when they act upon impulse or attempt a new challenge that puts them in danger. Of course the same is true when they accomplish something new or when they just crawl into our laps (and hearts) for some love.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Calming Big Emotions

All young children have big emotions. We can see these big emotions and experience them first hand when our children tantrum or have meltdowns. Our children, however, don’t often know that they are experiencing emotions. What they do know is how they feel: bad! The overwhelming feeling of a strong emotion that begins deep inside and needs to come out is scary for children. Letting them know that we all have emotions, naming them and allowing them to understand that the feeling will pass, will help those emotions calm sooner.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Forget the Flashcards… It is all about the Relationship!

It is all about the relationship. The most important factor for positive developmental outcomes for young children is the relationship with the significant caregivers in their lives. “Young children experience their world as an environment of relationships, and these relationships affect virtually all aspects of their development.” (Center on Developing Child Harvard University).

Blog Kathie Sarles

Simple Engaging Moments that Build the Brain

Summertime brings with it longer days filled with sunshine and growth and a sense of renewal on many levels. It is a time to take long walks, put our hands in the soil, and breathe in the fragrance of the flowers. This time of year can be a simple time; letting our senses take over while our minds wander.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Calming the Storm of Emotions

We could all use help calming down when big emotions overtake us. When we encounter a stressful situation, our body is flooded with physical and emotional responses. As adults we usually can find our way to the “other side” incorporating strategies that have worked in the past. Our children have had less experience and a less mature nervous system, and regulation is more difficult in times of anxiety and stress. Creating a daily calm down routine into our children’s life will serve them well as they grow and encounter more times of turmoil. Modeling your own daily mindful breathing, meditation, yoga or relaxation technique will give them the motivation to try.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Traditions: Reflection of Values

At this time of year I often reflect on my traditions, and what they mean to me and my family. Traditions connect one generation with another, bringing shared family values into our daily lives. Our Children learn what we hold dear, what is important and necessary to us, through our incorporation of these values into our home life. Families are as unique as the people within them, and traditions exemplify these differences.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Parenting in the Twenty First Century

Growing up in America has taken on a new dimension in the recent decades. Children are exposed to many more “truths” than they were in the baby boomer generation. Our generation hid the adult issues, talking in whispers when the children were around or sending them out to play when adults needed to talk. The old adage: Children need to be seen and not heard, was largely touted as the way to raise children. The advent of the 24 hour news cycle and the internet, however, opened up a world of wonder, knowledge and violence for everyone, including children.

Blog Kathie Sarles

Toddler Scary Separations

Scary Separations
How to Cope When Your Child Screams and Clings and Won’t Let GO!

Blog Kathie Sarles

Boosting Baby’s Brain

Your baby’s brain is growing and growing and growing! At birth, her brain is 25% of its adult volume, but by age 3, her brain will have grown to 80% of its full size. Between conception and age three, a child’s brain undergoes an impressive amount of change. At birth, it already has about all of the neurons it will ever have. (Urban Child Institute).