A trusting partnership moves beyond a friendly relationship as practitioners and families have multiple opportunities to interact, exchange information, and share insights with each other in the process of shared decision-making. This evolution of trust occurs as practitioners demonstrate more sophisticated practices aligned with enhanced communication, high expectations, respect, commitment, equality, and advocacy. With the development of trust, conversations and information exchanges are easier and less guarded. This allows for more personal topics to be covered and for more candid exchanges.
Watch the video to identify and reflect on examples of practices related to making shared decisions.
Video 4.6 Middle Ground Conversation
Libby, a teacher in a child care center, and Kim, a parent of a 4-year-old girl (Ella), have a conversation about working together and learning from one another. This conversation highlights addressing challenging issues. (running time: 5 min. 02 sec.)
Well Kim, I want to thank you for coming in today. Now that we’ve had some time to be in session in school and we’ve really gotten to know Ella a little bit better and I’d like to hear more from you about what you think about the school experience and what you’re hearing from her.
She seems to be having a great time. She’s very, very happy with her friends that she’s made here.
Well that certainly reflects what we see in the classroom. She’s 100% involved with her school day and very enthusiastic about everything and I recall when you first talked with me about her and you talked about her love for art, and that is certainly something we’ve seen at school.
You know what I also think about conversations that we’ve had before. I know that at one point you were talking—you know—certainly you have a new baby in your family and we talked about Ella sort of going from being the baby herself and the youngest to being the middle child now. So she has this older sister and she has this younger and there she is and so I want to hear a little bit more about what’s going on at home. We’ve seen a little bit more tenderness on her part, so I’d like to hear a little bit more from you if that might be what you’re seeing at home as well.
Yeah. Yeah. When I think about it there’s some moments I guess when she’s … might break down more than usual or not be able to get herself back together I guess.
It would be very helpful for us. Could you tell me a little bit more about what you do at home when this happens, when these type of situations come up for you.
Sure. Yeah. Yeah. So often times it seems like it’s in the middle of a transition maybe and she just falls apart completely and then …not sure where to go but if I try to talk to her and sometimes I might want to hug her like I do with my older child she doesn’t seem to take to it very well. So I just give her space. I let her sit and sometimes scream or talk and just get over the subject and tell her that I’m there if she needs me. And she just does what she needs to do in an area by herself and she comes up when she’s ready and we move on. It usually seems to work.
Oh. OK. Well that’s very helpful. It makes me think right away about a few spaces that we have in the school that are these quiet areas. So I’m hearing what you have to say it’s making me think that this might be a good area for her to go to when these times come along for her at school.