Friday, November 30, 2012

Get Connected

posted by: Cathy Renouf, Parent Support Worker at the OEYC Ottawa West Nepean

In the infant/Crawler group at the Ottawa West- Nepean OEYC one of our main objectives is the importance of attachment and how ELECT can help promote attachment through the social domain.

Attachment is the deep emotional tie or connection that an infant forms with a main caregiver that binds them together and endures over time.

Here are a few examples on how attachment is promoted in the drop-in.
Parents are asked:
·        To leave their car seats in the car and carry their child or use a snuggly or wrap. The more the baby is held close to the caregiver, the child will feel more secure;
·        To hold their baby in their arms so they are facing each other;
·        Responds to their baby’s cues;
·        Comfort their baby when he/she needs it, especially when he/she is hurt sick or frightened;
·        Play “copy me “games (this supports observation and imitation, as a way of learning);
·        Imitate their child’s expressions and sounds;
·        Talk to their child in a calm and gentle voice;
·        Sing songs they remember as a child and songs that include their child’s name. (encourages name recognition); and
·        Play simple one-to-one games
One example of a one-to-one game is “peek-a-boo” and here is the explanation directly from the ELECT document:
Parents were asked to place a transparent scarf over their child’s face. After a brief pause, pull it off and say “peek-a-boo!”
Eventually some of the babies will attempt to pull of the scarves themselves.
The focus of attachment is on a parent’s responsiveness to their child’s needs and close physical contact between a baby and his parents. Using the above simple tools can make a big difference in the bonding process. Parents already have the ability to achieve this experience. We as professionals need to provide them with the encouragement and criteria through the ELECT process.

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