Evidence for Learning: Working with parents in ECE

Working with parents in ECE

Evidence on working with parents in the early years from the Early Childhood Education Toolkit alongside other supporting resources. 

Evidence for Learning’s Early Childhood Education Toolkit shows that parental engagement in early years education is consistently associated with children’s subsequent academic success. On average, parental engagement programs evaluated to date have led to a positive impact of approximately four additional months’ progress over the course of a year. However, there does appear to be some variation in effectiveness between approaches, suggesting that careful thought is needed when developing and introducing parental engagement approaches, and that on-going monitoring and evaluation is essential. 

That’s why we – with our partners in the UK at the Education Endowment Foundation – have developed these one-page resources for early childhood educators to communicate with parents. These resources are based on Evidence for Learning’s Guidance Reports, which are clear and actionable recommendations for educators on a range of high-priority topics, based on the best available evidence.

One resource is a summary of evidence-informed tips for educators for effective communication with parents.

Four of these resources can be provided directly to parents and cover tips on reading, talking and playing with numbers. The resources for parents include an editable space where educators or early learning centres can list their relevant contact details.

Communicating with families to encourage involvement in their child’s learning is consistently associated with positive outcomes. This resource for early childhood educators provides five evidence-informed tips for effective communication with parents.

Evidence for Learning has four tips sheets on reading, talking and playing with numbers for educators to provide to parents.

Shared reading tips (for parents)
Shared reading is a great way to develop children’s language and communication skills. This resource provides seven evidence-informed tips to support parents to read with their young children.

Read with TRUST (for parents)

Reading opportunities are everywhere! This resource provides some evidence-informed ideas and examples to get parents talking with their child about anything the child enjoys reading.

Talking tips (for parents)

Strong oral language skills help children to communicate effectively and become successful learners in the future​. This resource provides five evidence-informed tips to support parents to have rich conversations with their young children.

Playing with numbers (for parents)

Young children benefit from being exposed to maths through play and other activities at home. This resource provides four evidence-informed suggestions for how parents can incorporate maths activities, language and ideas into the home environment with their young children.