The Incredible Years® Blog


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Guest Post: Center for ADHD in Denmark

The Center for ADHD in Denmark implements Incredible Years® Parent Training

Guest post by Tea Trillingsgaard
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No cost and no entry conditions

In Aarhus, Denmark, the Center for ADHD invites parents of young children with ADHD or related behavioral difficulties to attend the Incredible Years® Parent Training program at no cost and with no need of referral or diagnosis. And this approach works!

Effective strategy

Results from a new research study in press in Scandinavian Journal of Psychology[1] show that Danish parents who self-refer to free parent training have children with symptom levels similar to those found diagnosed ADHD samples. Furthermore, when benchmarking results from the Danish program against comparable studies by Carolyn Webster-Stratton and her colleagues[2] in recent US studies, the Danish version was as effective with regard to reducing ADHD symptoms, reducing disruptive behavior, and enhancing positive parenting practices. (Find links to articles at the end of this post.)

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The story of Center for ADHD

The Center for ADHD was founded in 2010 by Agnete Kirk Thinggaard, a MsO psychologist and member of the LEGO family, who wished to reduce long wait lists for diagnostic evaluation and increase easy access to parenting support for families of young children struggling with ADHD or related behavioral difficulties. Agnete Kirk Thinggaard also serves on the board of Edith and Godtfred Kirk Christansens Foundation, which supports the center.

What else is going on?

The staff at Center for ADHD consists of a secretary and six psychologists who, in addition to conducting The Incredible Years® Basic program, train and supervise teachers, day care providers, education and social workers and others working with children with ADHD or related behavioral difficulties. Center for ADHD is continually collaborating on research projects carried out at the Aarhus University.

Center for ADHD Staff

The staff at the Center for ADHD, saying hello from Denmark!

[1] Trillingsgaard, Trillingsgaard, & Webster-Stratton (in press). Scandinavian Journal of Psychology. Click here to read article.

[2] Webster-Stratton, Reid & Beauchaine (2011; 2012): Click here to read article.


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Meet our new team member, RJ!

We are excited to announce a new member of our team here at the Incredible Years® main office in Seattle! RJ Straker joined our staff earlier this summer and has been busy soaking up all there is to know about IY.

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Entering his Senior year at Seattle Pacific University, RJ is studying Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing. He enjoys most genres of music and plays the guitar. Other interests include action movies and learning about history. Taking advantage of all the great PNW has to offer, RJ is an “outdoorsy” guy and likes to play sports as well as go hiking and snowboarding.

In his work at IY, RJ is currently working in our (newly remodeled!) packing area, prepping materials and sending out orders for materials. We appreciate his hard work and enjoy having him on board!

To learn more about the rest of the IY staff, click here!


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New Research on Incredible Years® at Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE)

New Randomized Control Group Study Presented Using the Incredible Years® (IY) Teacher Classroom Management (TCM) Program for Training Primary Grade Teachers at the Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (March 2014)

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Initial Findings of Randomized Control Group Trial Evaluating the Incredible Years® Teacher Classroom Management (TCM) Program for Training Primary Grade Teachers

Wendy Reinke and Keith Herman, along with their team at the University of Missouri, recently presented a paper evaluating the effectiveness of the TCM Training Program for improving primary grade teachers’ (K-3) classroom management practices and improving student social, emotional and academic outcomes.

SREE Conference Presentation (click the link to view the conference presentation!)

Study design was a blocked cluster randomized wait-list control trial where over a 3 year period 105 teachers were randomized within schools (52 intervention and 53 control teachers and 1818 students) to an intervention teacher training condition (IY TCM) or wait-list control condition.

The IY TCM Program was delivered to intervention condition teachers grades K-3 in 6 full day training workshops spread throughout the year. Plus teachers got on-site coaching between workshop sessions. Coaches spent time with teachers providing modeling, performance feedback, individual behavior plan action planning and goal setting.

Results showed that according to independent observations intervention teachers used more proactive management strategies and students had fewer problems with emotional regulation and increased prosocial skills. Students with the poorest academic competence at baseline demonstrated significant improvement in academic competence compared with students in the control classrooms.

Further Analyses
In a more recent presentation (May 2014) Wendy and Keith presented data on the amount of coaching support teachers (K-3 grade only) received between workshop sessions and its relation to teacher use of proactive strategies and student outcomes for an at-risk subsample.

Results indicated that IY TCM plus coaching is a flexible approach to tailoring training and support according to individual classroom and teacher needs.

Reinke, W.M., Herman, K.C., & Dong, N. (March, 2014). A group randomized evaluation of the Incredible Years Teacher Training program.Paper presented as part of symposium entitled, What can we learn through replication? The role of individual-level risk factors and implementation supports in the impact of social-emotional learning programs on student outcomes, at the Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness, Washington, DC.

Reinke, W., Stormant, M., Herman, K., Wang, Z., Newcomer, L., King, K. 2014. Use of Coaching and Behavior Support Planning for Students With Disruptive Behavior Within a Universal Classroom Management Program. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 22(2) 74-82.

See our web site for some of their first papers about IY fidelity program delivery and the importance of teacher coaching and support in combination with workshop trainings.

See below a video of Wendy and Keith discussing managing classroom behavior.

 


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Carolyn and Wally invited by National Children’s Bureau to visit Northern Ireland

Carolyn Webster-Stratton and Wally visit Northern Ireland June 1-5, 2014 at the invitation of National Children’s Bureau (NCB)  

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Wally preparing to give his speech, with Carolyn

NCB Launch Carolyn was so excited to be invited to Northern Ireland this month to help launch the Incredible Years® (IY) Northern Ireland Co-ordination Project. While there, she had the opportunity to meet Ewin Poots, MLA, Minister for Health, Social Services and Public Safety as well as Dr. Eddie Rooney, Chief Executive, Public Health Agency. Both of these individuals spoke at the conference about the importance of supporting families by using evidence-based programs that promote positive parenting and children’s social, emotional and academic competence. Carolyn introduced them to Wally Problem Solver and they seemed to enjoy his company. To learn more about the National Children’s Bureau, click here.

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(From Left) Carolyn & Dina Dinosaur, Dr. Eddie Rooney and Wally Problem Solver, Caroline White, Deirdre McAliskey, Celine McStravick, and Maria McAleese with Molly Manners.

The objectives of NCB’s new launch is to promote effective implementation of IY, program delivery fidelity, and group leader accreditation as well as to help agencies monitor and measure the impact of their programs through evaluations. The leaders of this launch are Celine McStravick and Deirdre McAliskey from NCB. Following the conference, a cross agency steering group with administrators of schools, agencies and foundations met to discuss system implementation issues.

Carolyn with IY Ni staff (Deirdre & James)

Carolyn and Dina with James McGinley and Wally

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Molly, Dina, and Wally listen in at the conference!

At the conference, Carolyn gave the keynote speech to a group of IY group leaders and administrators. She talked about the Incredible Years® Parents, Teachers and Child programs, research outcomes, and some of the agency and clinician barriers to successful program delivery. The group seemed surprised to learn that over the past 10 years, 574 IY parent group leaders, 94 child dinosaur group leaders and 64 teacher leaders have been trained. Carolyn presented 8 key building blocks for disseminating the programs with fidelity in the “real world.” When faced with an actual technological barrier to her powerpoint and video presentation delivery, Wally Problem Solver helped Carolyn with calm down strategies and solutions for how to both hold the microphone and speak to the audience with confidence despite being unable to show her carefully edited video clips. As happens with implementation of evidence-based programs, this illustrated how to go forward despite unexpected barriers. She discussed how to overcome such barriers and the importance of delivering the programs with fidelity in order to get the best outcomes for children.

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After some technological barriers, Wally helped Carolyn with “calm down” strategies so she could finish her presentation

Caroline White, Head of CASP Early Intervention, Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and an accredited Incredible Years® Parent Trainer, spoke about her successful implementation of the IY program in the Manchester area over the past 15 years area. She provided examples of ways she has addressed each of the 8 building blocks to promote quality delivery. She talked about the importance of an interagency infrastructure that includes administrators, policy makers, and IY mentors to coordinate efforts and outcomes and who are in consultation with the developer and IY trainers.

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From Left: Carolyn Webster-Stratton, Caroline White, Maria McAleese

Carolyn with Maria McAleese (IY Mentor for Parent Program)

Northern Ireland is fortunate to have an accredited IY mentor, Maria McAleese (who provides ongoing consultation workshops, coaching and authorized training workshops) as well as an accredited IY Coach and Mentor in Training, Peadar Mckenna. These dynamic individuals have already provided coaching and video review feedback to many group leaders. In the afternoon, Maria and Peadar each led separate groups of group leaders to discuss the training, coaching and support structure and to review their needs. Carolyn joined each of these groups to explain the rationale for the certification/accreditation process and to answer questions.

Carolyn with Peadar McKenna (IY Parent Peer Coach and Mentor in Training)

2nd day of Conference with Consultation Day

This day started with a visit to Colin Neighbourhood Partnership, a community center in Colin to learn about the Early Intervention Community efforts at delivering all the IY programs. The highlight of this event was two parents who talked about their experiences participating in the program.  Carolyn introduced Dina Dinosaur who talked about the dangers of violence and announced the birth of her new baby. Baby dina will be staying at this center to learn about all the ways she can survive by learning to problem solve and make good friends.

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Carolyn with the team at Colin Neighbourhood Partnership

Additionally, parent and child group leaders met to get a preview of what happens on group leader consultation days. Normally, consultation days only consist of 12 participants (6 pairs of leaders) from either parent or teacher or child IY programs, who present selected video clips of their IY groups and receive feedback regarding their personal goals. However, in order to illustrate the value of this approach, more than 30 parent and child group leaders attended to watch 4 group leaders show their video clips and receive feedback. Maria, Peadar and Carolyn took turns leading the discussion of these video vignettes and also led participants in role play practices.

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Carolyn sets up role play practice for group leaders

Issues discussed, modeled and practiced included the collaborative role of IY leader and coleader, how to help a parent work out her relationship with her child’s grandmother, how to trigger spontaneous role plays in conjunction with home activity reviews, effective use of buzzes, how to coach play times to assist children who are developmentally delayed or non interactive, and how to manage children in groups who are off task and not engaged in the learning. While barriers to videotaping were acknowledged, participants seemed to appreciate the value and immense learning opportunity provided from video review and self-reflective learning with peers and with a mentor or coach. Carolyn answered other questions about IY programs such as ways the School Readiness and Attentive Parenting Programs could be used as supplements, accreditation requirements, and the importance of being able to offer more sessions according to risk level of the population. Participants were enthusiastic and supportive of each other and hopefully achieved Carolyn’s “fun” goal.

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Full Consultation day group!

To learn more about the Incredible Years® Programs, visit our website: http://www.incredibleyears.com

~The Incredible Years® Team


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North Carolina Agency Shows Incredible Years’ Impact on Families

Thompson Child and Family Focus is an agency in North Carolina currently using The Incredible Years programs to teach parenting classes within their community. “Thompson is a non-profit organization operating three distinct campuses, each providing comprehensive education, treatment, and care for children (birth to 18 years) in need.” (Thompson website, http://www.thompsoncff.org/)

Thompson has sent a number of group leaders to Seattle for Group Leader Training, and they also have staff who are “Certified” group leaders, meaning they have gone through our certification process to ensure they are implementing the program as it is intended, with fidelity (this is vital for evidence-based programs!). It is clear the commitment this agency shows to high quality standards pays off in the outcomes they see with their families.

Recently, we were sent a powerful video discussing the work they do and the impact of The Incredible Years parent classes on the community. Though they have a number of campuses, the video focuses on the work being done in the Grier Heights community, which is host to high crime rate and unemployment.

According to the video, many of the parents are single mothers, searching for a stable income, and are experiencing numerous stressors. Says group leader Shunta Daniels, “Regardless of whether you come from a high socio-economic class or a low socio-economic class – parents want the best for their children.” The parents attend the classes for 16 weeks and learn to build positive solid foundations with their children.

“The parenting class has been an experience – a wonderful experience – and not an experience that I expected. It’s been a learning experience, it’s been a growing experience – it gives you a greater respect for yourself and other people.” (Quote from parent in video.)

Be sure to watch video at the top of this page, and share with your friends! You can also view this on our website, in the testimonials section.

If you are a parent interested in attending an Incredible Years parent group, click here. 

If you are interested in implementing the Incredible Years programs through your agency, contact us!

 


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Parent Testimonial: “It does work!”

This past week we received an e-mail from one of our parent group leaders in Colorado. She shared with us a lovely testimonial, written by one of the parents who had just completed a 14-week parent group. This parent expresses her experience with the class, and we wanted to share it with you all!

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Message from the group leader: 

I wanted to share with you this e-mail I received after finishing the Incredible Years parenting program last night. We were so touched by the e-mail that we wanted you to see it. I have facilitated the group for the past 8 1/2 years for a total of at least 17 sessions and I continue to get responses like this one.

Message from parent:

I just wanted to thank you both for the wonderful set of parenting classes that we just finished. At first, when we started, I thought, “Oh My! 14 weeks! That is a long time…”

Then, while we were doing the classes, my thoughts turned into “Oh my! How am I going to remember all this and put it into practice??” 

As we went on, I was feeling sad and deprived if I had to miss a class… it was such a great reminder to stay on track with what we had learned until then, because little by little, each piece of the puzzle was fitting perfectly and it was all starting to make more and more sense…

By week 14, I saw how necessary it was to actually have all that time for all the information provided, to make sense and to be able to learn to apply it. It works…. no matter how reluctant we may have been at the beginning, you won us over. It does work! 

This class was a life changing experience for me. It taught me that being a parent is the most important job in my life and that it was also the one that I had the least coaching, education and training for. Now, I can see how I can help my children become better people. This class taught me that… it made learn and mature and be a better parent, and that is just priceless. I will never be able to thank you enough, never.

I wish that every parent would be willing to do the class and commit to do it, the effort that it takes to do it compared to what you get out of it has NO comparison. Now I feel more confident on how to behave with my kids, how to be a better mother, a better wife and I feel so much happier. Thank you for giving me this gift. It is a wonderful feeling and I very much appreciate it.

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Additional comments from parent:

The way it us all set up with child care and food, it just does not get any better…

The information given and the way it was presented was extremely useful and I got the book to keep reminding me what to do if I ever feel lost. It was absolutely wonderful. I would recommend it to anyone in a heart beat. Thank you for offering this program, it was a treat and joy.

~The Incredible Years Team


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Promoting Healthy Activity in Kids ~ Incredible Adventures of Wally: Sports Edition (Part 3)

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Wally completes his tour of Seattle sports with a visit to the Mariners, where he hits a home run and helps win the game! Wally has enjoyed learning more about all of these sports teams and the hard work that goes into each sport. He also has realized how much he has enjoyed being part of a team and being active.

Even though Wally has to retire from professional sports, he still plans to spend lots of time outside this summer with his friends, playing and teaching them all the things he learned in football, soccer, and baseball!

He hopes the other kids will join and see how fun it is to play together outside, release energy, be creative, and spend time socializing with each other.

Until next time!

 

~The Incredible Years

 


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Promoting Healthy Activity in Kids ~ Incredible Adventures of Wally: Sports Edition (Part 2)

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In our previous post, Wally helped us see how fun it can be to get outside, enjoy some sports, and play with friends and family! Well, Wally decided to take a break from Football after he lost his ball in the tree, and try his hand (or should we say “foot”??) at soccer instead! Besides, he didn’t like wearing a football helmet and his mother insisted he must if he were to play this game.

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Wally didn’t like wearing the heavy football helmet, but Carolyn insisted he must.

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To prove her point, Carolyn put the helmet on also – to show Wally it’s not so bad. Then she realized Wally was right – it WAS really heavy! These two will have to stick to “non contact” sports, we think!

Does it seem like Wally is flip flopping a bit? Should he give up on football so easily? Should he be bouncing around to different sports, or stick to one and become really proficient at it? Maybe that sounds like a silly question, but it’s one that many parents have asked themselves. Where is the line between promoting your child’s perseverance, commitment, and ability to follow the rules, and letting him make his own decision to give up because it is hard work or he doesn’t like the rules?

Being child-directed, or child-led, is a really important way of letting your child explore his likes and dislikes. This allows your child to develop his or her own individuality and discover what activities are truly enjoyable. Of course, it’s good to promote perseverance – if something is difficult, that doesn’t mean it can’t also be fun. Striking the balance between encouraging your child to be persistent while still allowing them the freedom to explore options and do something else is key!

Through exploration and play, children will learn which activities are right for them. It might be a team sport such as soccer, football, golf, swimming, softball, rugby or basketball, or a more individual sport such as running, walking, gymnastics, learning to yoyo or joining the circus! (It happens!) The take away point should always be focused on physical and mental health and, particularly for children, having fun and spending time together as a family and with friends.


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Promoting Healthy Activity in Kids ~ Incredible Adventures of Wally: Sports Edition (Part 1)

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Wally, like many young children, loves to play outdoors. In this series about promoting healthy activity in kids, we’ll follow Wally as he tries out for different sports, and also consider the benefits of exercise and outdoor play for children.

You may remember when Wally and the whole puppet gang decided to start exercising back in October (if not, refresh your memory by clicking here!).  We shared an article that showed how the Incredible Years programs had been linked to healthier outcomes and lower rates of obesity. You can read that article here. 

In Part 1 of this series, let’s consider some of the benefits of exercise, sports, and outdoor play for children. With summer on it’s way, this is a great time for families to start planning play time outside all together! Spending time playing together outside fosters family bonding and helps children see how physical activity can be fun. Especially for younger children, try not to impose rules but instead allow them to be child-directed and explore different sports and games.

You can bring a variety of options to the park and try out some different games like tag, kicking the ball around, or playing catch.  This sort of play promotes hand-eye coordination and motor skills, and it can also be a wonderful way to foster your child’s imagination and creativity, allowing him/her to explore new things. Another benefit is helping children see how exercise can come in many different forms and be enjoyable. It promotes a healthy, active lifestyle, and gives children a way to release energy!

Check back next week – Wally will continue making the rounds of Seattle sports teams, trying to choose which one is right for him!

~The Incredible Years Team

 


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Incredible Years® Building Blocks For Head Start (Part 2)

Benefits of Teacher Training and the Child Dinosaur Curriculum for
Promoting Children’s Social and Emotional Development

Incredible Years® in Head Start (Part 2)

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In our previous post, we discussed how the Incredible Years® (IY) Parent and Teacher Programs have been researched and proven effective in Head Start settings. The IY Child programs have also been studied in a Head Start environment (in conjunction with IY Teacher program), in both a larger classroom prevention setting as well as a smaller treatment group setting for children.

The studies illustrate how children in head start who receive the IY curriculum demonstrate increased social, emotional, and academic skills, as well as reduced aggression. By implementing interlocking programs for parents, teachers AND children, this allows for greater results and consistency for everyone involved. Read on to see how IY Programs have been successful in head start classrooms as well as with groups of children with ADHD and ODD.

Studies: Effects of IY Classroom Management Program for Head Start Teachers headstartquote2

Over the past 20 years, a half dozen randomized control group studies in the US, Wales and Ireland have shown that using the Incredible Years (IY) Teacher Classroom Management Training Series in Head Start or Sure Start (in United Kingdom) results in significant improvements in teacher’s use of student coaching methods, praise, proactive discipline and classroom management strategies. In addition, intervention classrooms (where teachers received IY training) showed increased student positive interactions and cooperation with teachers and peers, school readiness and engagement with school activities compared with control classroom students. Additionally, intervention classrooms had significantly reduced peer aggression than control classrooms.

Webster-Stratton, C., M.J. Reid, and M. Hammond, Preventing conduct problems, promoting social competence: A parent and teacher training partnership in Head Start. Journal of Clinical Child Psychology, 2001. 30(3): p. 283-302.

Hutchings, J., et al., Early results from developing and researching the Webster-Stratton Incredible Years Teacher Classroom Management Training Programme in North West Wales. Journal of Children’s Services, 2007. 2(3): p. 15-26.

Study: Effects of Combining the IY Teacher Classroom Management Program with the Child Dinosaur Social and Emotional Curriculum In Head Start Classrooms

This study was designed to assess the effects of the Teacher Classroom Management plus the Classroom Dinosaur Social and Emotional Curriculum (Dinosaur School) for economically disadvantaged populations. Head Start, kindergarten and first grade teachers were selected because of their high rates of families living in poverty. Matched pairs of schools were randomly assigned to intervention or control conditions. In the intervention classrooms, teachers offered the Dinosaur School curriculum in bi-weekly lessons throughout the year. They sent home weekly “dinosaur” home activities to encourage parents’ involvement. Children and teachers were observed in the classroom by “blind” observers at the beginning and end of the school year. Results reported from multilevel models of 153 teachers and 1,768 students indicated that teachers used more positive classroom management strategies and their students showed more social competence, emotional self-regulation, school readiness skills and reduced conduct problems compared with control students. Satisfaction of the program was very high regardless of the grade levels.

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Incredible Years® Classroom Dinosaur Child Curriculum

Webster-Stratton, C. and M.J. Reid, Strengthening social and emotional competence in socioeconomically disadvantaged young children: Preschool and kindergarten school-based curricula, in Social competence of young children: Risk, disability, and intervention, W.H. Brown, S.L. Odom, and S.R. McConnell, Editors. 2008, Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.: Baltimore. p. 185-203.

Webster-Stratton, C., M.J. Reid, and M. Stoolmiller, Preventing conduct problems and improving school readiness: Evaluation of the Incredible Years Teacher and Child Training Programs in high-risk schools. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 2008. 49(5): p. 471-488.

Webster-Stratton, C. and K.C. Herman, Disseminating Incredible Years Series Early Intervention Programs: Integrating and Sustaining Services Between School and Home Psychology in Schools 2010. 47(1): p. 36-54.

Studies: Effects of the Small Group Treatment Dinosaur Curriculum

headstartquote3In addition to the evaluation of the Classroom Dinosaur program with a selected population of socioeconomically disadvantaged populations, four randomized trials have been conducted with children diagnosed with Oppositional Defiant Disorder and ADHD, using the IY Small Group Dinosaur Curriculum.

These studies have shown increases in children’s emotional language, social skills and appropriate problem solving strategies with peers as well as reductions in conduct problems at home and children.

Webster-Stratton, C., M.J. Reid, and T.P. Beauchaine, Combining Parent and Child Training for Young Children with ADHD. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 2011. 40(2): p. 1-13.

Webster-Stratton, C., M.J. Reid, and M. Hammond, Treating children with early-onset conduct problems: Intervention outcomes for parent, child, and teacher training. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 2004. 33(1): p. 105-124.

Webster-Stratton, C. and M. Hammond, Treating children with early-onset conduct problems: A comparison of child and parent training interventions. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 1997. 65(1): p. 93-109.

Building Blocks for Promoting Children’s Cognitive, Social and Emotional Development

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Parents and teachers starting early to work together to build a strong foundation of social and emotional development in children is the most effective way to achieve optimal academic growth and school achievement and reduce delinquency and substance abuse.

For group leader reflections regarding using the IY programs with Head Start, view this video!