Last week, I (along with librarians and other early childhood providers from around the region) attended a teaser program about Parents Interaction With Intention (PIWI) Playgroups. PIWI is based on trying to support and nourish parents as they interact with their children, and it is especially designed to work well with families who are working with disabilities.
It builds on the ideas that libraries have been thinking about for a while:
- Parents are the experts on their own children
- Parents are the most important people for their children
- Our role is to help develop parental competence and confidence, and to promote mutual enjoyment for parents and their children.
- We can support parent/child groups by having great environments that set them up for success.
One thing I wish you all could have experienced was how much library-love was in the room. The other early childhood providers (folks from Early Head Start, early childhood special education teachers, Birth to Three folks, and more) were SO EXCITED to think about working with families in the natural and supportive environment of libraries.
We'll keep you posted about all of these developments and upcoming opportunities, and hopefully we'll be able to share more with everyone about some ways to take PIWI principals into regular library work.