Parents as Teachers
The Parents as Teachers (PAT) Program is a free service that is offered to families in Berrien County who are pregnant or have children under the age of three. The first three years of a child's life are ESSENTIAL for laying a strong and positive foundation in all areas of their lives - education, health, behavior, and relationships. Because those first few years are so important, parents are a child's FIRST and MOST INFLUENTIAL teachers!
PAT offers two types of services:
Personal Home Visits and Group Connections
Personal Home Visits are an opportunity to receive information that is individualized to your child and family. A Certified Parent Educator would visit you at your home and bring information and activity ideas specific for your young child's age and development. The visits usually last about one hour and can occur weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly. Visits are an opportunity for parents to look closely at their child's development, enhance the ways they promote their child's learning, problem-solve any of the usual parenting concerns that arise, and increase their confidence that they are providing a strong and positive foundation for their child's learning. If you are interested in hearing more about PAT Personal Home Visits, please either fill out the on-line referal form or call Kerenda Applebey at 269-471-7725, ext. 1330.
PAT offers a variety of Group Connections throughout the year. You can always find the latest schedule for these here, or you can sign up to receive email calendars.
Read, Play, & Learn Playgroups
Playgroups are offered during the school year at 15 different locations throughout Berrien County each month. You do NOT have to register or sign-up to attend these groups. You also do NOT have to be enrolled in PAT (receiving Personal Home Visits) to attend.
The playgroups are a chance for parents with young children (infants - age 5) to get together with other parents and young children and have some fun! Each month we choose a children's book as the theme for the playgroup activities. At the beginning of the group, the story is read during circie time. Then parents can play together with their children through a variety of activities. At the end of the group, every family gets a copy of the book to take home and enjoy over and over again. Each group also has a parenting education topic and additional information is available on that topic for parents to take home. Here is this month's schedule.
Upcoming Early Childhood Events
The Family Events planned for the 2012-2013 school year are listed below. If the event has passed by, you can view pictures by clicking on it.
- Reading by the River - Tuesday, September 11, 2012
- Books on the Bluff - Thursday, September 13, 2012
- Welcome Winter - Tuesday, December 4, 2012
- Party in the Park - Friday, May 17, 2013