Professional Resource

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Understanding the Influence of Culture on Caregiving Practices...From the Inside Out

Everyone brings specific values, beliefs, and assumptions about child rearing and child development to their work with infants and toddlers.

by Janice Im, Rebecca Parlakian, and Sylvia Sánchez

Lisa and Danielle are collegial coteachers in an infant and toddler classroom. Occasionally what seem like minor issues cause them to make some pointed comments that silence them both. For example, Lisa believes that babies need to be held and cuddled as often as possible; she carries them throughout the day or picks them up at the first sign of fussiness. She frequently observes aloud, “Babies need lots of love and attention.” Danielle responds by rolling her eyes and saying, “They also need to learn to soothe themselves. You’re going to spoil them if you pick them up and carry them all the time.”

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