Listening and Responding to Families' Needs

This module was revised in 2017 to incorporate specific language, examples and tips for summer and year-round learning programs

Program staff must listen, with respect and affirmation, to the concerns of a child/youth’s family and accept the validity of the family’s point of view.  Well-developed communication skills enable staff to convey respect and concern by focusing attention on the child/youth’s needs while underscoring respect for the family through attentive listening and openness to the family’s point of view. 

In this training participants will:

  • Learn to be more responsive to the needs of family members.
  • Practice listening compassionately and being aware of how our experiences affect our present interactions with children/youth and their families.
  • Discuss and share experiences in handling a variety of difficult issues with families.

Content Overview:

Exploring the Topic

Participants will learn how to be more responsive to the families in their program by practicing listening, understanding how their experiences contribute, and sharing some of their experiences with families.

Problem Solving

Participants will role-play scenarios that are likely to come up I their interactions with families, to work through the best practices and learn to handle difficult situations.

The Art of Listening

Participants we take some time to reflect on how their own childhoods influence the way they relate to the children and youth and their families in their program.

Responding to Families

Participants take part in activities designed to help them address difficult issues with families and to become more responsive in dealing with these.

Training Length: 2 hours