General goals of the activity
- Create conditions for the family to understand the pedagogical work in preschool and the opportunities these activities provide to learn and develop.
- Give the pedagogues and family the opportunity to get to know each other.
Description of the activity
The families were invited to a workshop where each section at the preschool had planned an activity for the families to do together. One of the sections baked gingerbreads together and three of the sections had planned an activity where the families got to create something together, for example a painting.
The teachers planned the activity and prepared an invitation to the families.
The families didn't have to sign up for this activity. The workshops took place in the afternoon when the parents (by parents we mean legal guardians) came to pick up their children in the preschool.
It was the families’ decision if they wanted to join and for how long they wanted to participate in the workshop.
The teachers and the children organized the activity together in one of the rooms in the section.
In each section there was a table with materials they could use.
One of the teachers working at that time had the responsibility to take care of the activity and socialize with the family. The day the activity was to be held the teachers reminded the parents about the workshop and when they arrived to pick up their children they were invited to the workshop.
Some of the families stayed and some of them couldn´t stay for different reasons.
During the activity the teacher and the families had the opportunity to talk about different things.
The teacher had the possibility to talk about the pedagogical work in the preschool and what we achieve through these types of activities with children.
This was also a great opportunity for the families to meet and get to know each other.
These kind of activities can be done either in the morning or in the afternoon, depending on the preschool’s and parents’ availability.
At the end of the workshop we did an evaluation together with the families.
Questions to be asked:
- What went well?
- What can be improved?
- What kind of workshops would you like us to do together?
(issues to be aware of when implementing the activity)
It is important to get the pedagogues interested in cooperating with the families and participating in these kind of activities.
The teachers also have to see the benefits and have interest in cooperating with the families.
Another issue is to get the parents to participate and have the interest to join these kind of activities. To give the families greater opportunities to join the workshops we offer these once every month.Sometimes in the morning and sometimes in the afternoon. Language barrier: some parents have difficulties to communicate and understand the language.
Role of the teacher
- Plan and prepare the activity.
- Hand out an invitation to the families.
- Explain to the family members why we do activities like this.
- Be present and supportive during the activity.
- The pedagogues discuss preschool work and goals with the family. This is an opportunity to show the parents that we work with language, mathematics and explain other goals in our curriculum.
- You need to work in an active way to inspire the families to attend these kinds of activities.
- Evaluate the activity together with the families.
- Document the activity for everyone.
Role of the family
- To participate.
- Show interest in their child’s daily life in preschool.
- Get to know other families in our preschool.
- Provide their own suggestions for workshops, once they get used to this kind of activities.
Added value for the child and the family
- We can socialize with the families and get to know each other in more informal contexts.
- The parents get an insight into the preschool’s work and knowledge of how to be involved in the preschool activities and their child’s daily life.
Materials to be used
Gingerbread baking: dough, cookie cutter, rolling pin, oven, flour.
Example of materials for a creative activity: canvas plate, different kind of paint colors, different kinds of brushes, apron.
Guiding questions to reflect on the general improvement of the service
- Did the practice meet the needs from which it originated?
- In what way did the activity improve the participation of the parents?
- To what extent did the activity improve our professional development as a team?
- How did the activity affect the development of the relationship of trust with the parents?