The Incredible Years® Blog


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Preschool Curriculum Consumer Report Shows Effectiveness of Incredible Years Classroom Program

secoverpageThe National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning (NCQTL) recently released their 2015 Social Emotional Preschool Curriculum Consumer Report. This report serves as a guide for Head Start programs to assist them in selecting a social emotional curriculum for their classrooms. Seven different evidence-based programs were presented and evaluated against NCQTL’s twelve components of an effective social-emotional preschool curriculum. The Incredible Years® Classroom Dinosaur Curriculum is among the programs reviewed in the report, which highlights the positive impact of implementing IY in a classroom setting!

The twelve components used to evaluate each program are thoroughly explained in the full report, which can be found here. Each program is ranked on a scale of “No Evidence,” “Minimal Evidence,” “Some Evidence,” and “Solid, High-Quality Evidence” for each component.

Incredible Years Classroom Dinosaur School was found to have “Some Evidence” or “Solid, High-Quality Evidence” for nearly all of the twelve components! The program ranked particularly high in areas of comprehensiveness, depth for covered social, emotional and learning elements, well-designed learning activities, responsive teaching, and family involvement materials. Download a PDF of the entire Incredible Years report here, or access the full downloadable report online to learn more about the programs evaluated and how Incredible Years can be used to teach social, emotional, and academic skills in a classroom setting.

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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!


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Incredible Years® Building Blocks For Head Start (Part 1)

Benefits of Parents and Teachers Working in Partnership in Head Start: Promoting Children’s
Social Emotional Development and School Readiness (Part 1)

Written by: Carolyn Webster-Strattonheadstart_fb

There is a lot of buzz going around right now about promoting quality Early Childhood Education. We know this is a vital time in children’s lives, where they are learning important lessons about problem solving, engaging with peers, cooperating with teachers and parents, and more. Providing extra support for parents, teachers and children during these early school years can result in lasting skills which will help to reduce aggression and behavior problems, while increasing positive social interactions and academic competence. The Incredible Years® programs (www.incredibleyears.com) aim to do just that, and in this two part series we hope to shine a light specifically on using the Incredible Years® series in a Head Start context.

headstartquote3Numerous randomized control group studies over the past 2 decades have shown that using the Incredible Years® (IY) Parents, Teachers and Children’s Training Series in Head Start or Sure Start (in United Kingdom) results in significant improvements in classroom observations of children’s social competence, emotional literacy, and problem solving with peers. Additionally, there are increases in child cooperation with teachers, engagement with school activities, school readiness and reductions in children’s aggression in the classroom. According to both parent and teacher reports, parent involvement in their children’s school activities as well as with  teachers was significantly improved compared to Head Start control families’ reports.

 

Study #1: Effects of IY Basic Parent Program In Head Start

The first study was carried out in 1998 to examine the effectiveness of the IY parent program for Head Start families. The sample included 426 Head Start mothers and their 4 year old children who generally faced multiple risk factors, including 85% receiving welfare, 55% single parent status, 42% moderately depressed and 28% with substance abuse problems. Approximately 37% represented minority group status, including Asian, Hispanic and African American families. Seven Head Start centers were randomly assigned to either the intervention condition or regular Head Start services.

In the intervention condition parents received the IY Parent basic program (9 sessions held weekly for 2 hours) which was delivered by trained family service workers. Additionally, Head Start teachers participated in a 2-day workshop to familiarize them with the IY parent program. Training for both parents and teachers covered the importance of parent-teacher communication and parent involvement in Head Start.

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Results showed significant improvements in blind observations of the intervention group parent behaviors including fewer critical remarks, less harsh discipline and more nurturing and responsive parenting compared with the control group mothers. In turn, the children of intervention group mothers had fewer behavior problems than control group children whose behavior remained unchanged. Intervention group teachers and parents reported significant improvements in children’s behaviors and teachers also reported increases in parents’ involvement and contact with schools. Parent satisfaction with the program was very high with most parents requesting that the program continue longer. One year later, improvements in intervention mothers’ parenting skills and children’s behavior were maintained according to home observations and parent reports.

Webster-Stratton, C. (1998). Preventing conduct problems in Head Start children: Strengthening parenting competencies. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 66(5), 715-730.

Study #2: Added Benefits of Longer IY Parent Program plus the IY Teacher Classroom Management Program

In 2001, another study looked at the effectiveness of offering a longer, more comprehensive IY parent program alongside the IY teacher program. The sample included 272 Head Start mothers and 61 teachers. As in study #1, many of the families faced multiple risk factors and 63% represented ethnic minority groups. Fourteen Head Start centers (34 classrooms) were randomly assigned to either intervention or control groups.

hsquoteIn the intervention group, parents received the Basic and Advance IY parent programs (16 sessions held weekly for 2 hours).  The material included school readiness training (pre-reading and writing skills) and parent problem solving skills. At the same time, teachers were trained in the IY Teacher Classroom Management Program, which focuses on building relationships with students and parents, proactive discipline and ways to promote student’s social and emotional competence. Teachers received 6 full day workshops spread throughout the school year. The parents in the Head Start control group received their usual services which included some parent education.

teacher-block_wadcResults indicated improvements for intervention group parenting interactions, including more responsive, positive parenting and less negative interactions than control group parents. Parent-teacher bonding was significantly higher for intervention parents who attended six or more intervention sessions than for control group parents. Intervention group teachers had higher scores on classroom management skills than those in the control group. Children in the intervention group showed significant improvements in conduct problems at school and better social skills competence compared with control children. Results indicated significant changes regardless of the ethnicity of the family and high consumer satisfaction scores.

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

 

More IY Parent and Teacher Studies with High Risk Populations by Independent Researchers

In addition to the developer studies (described above), Dr. Judy Hutchings and her team (in Wales) have conducted studies evaluating the IY basic parent program in Sure Start  (a similar program to Head Start in the UK, for economically disadvantaged families). Short and long term outcomes were impressive for the entire sample, replicating those achieved by the developer, including similar high retention rates. Good outcomes were also achieved for children from the most disadvantaged, typically hard-to-engage families with clear evidence that change in parenting behavior mediated changed child behavior.

Additionally, the Wales team evaluated the IY teacher programs as well as parent programs with positive outcomes in terms of changes in teacher and student outcomes.

Bywater, T., Hutchings, J., Daley, D., Whitaker, C., Tien Yeo, S., Jones, K., et al. (2009). Long-term effectiveness of a parenting intervention for children at risk of developing conduct disorder. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 195, 318-324.

Hutchings, J., Bywater, T., & Daley, D. (2007). A pragmatic randomised controlled trial of a parenting intervention in Sure Start services for pre-school children at risk of developing conduct disorder: how and why did it work? Journal of Children’s Services, 2(2), 4-14

Gardner, F., Hutchings, J., & Bywater, T. (2010). Who benefits and how does it work? Moderators and mediators of outcome in a randomized trial of parenting interventions in multiple ‘Sure Start’ services. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 39, 1-13.

Hutchings, J., Daley, D., Jones, E. E., Martin, P., Bywater, T., & Gwyn, R. (2007). 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, 2(3), 15-26.

Other independent replications using randomized control group studies have been conducted utilizing the Incredible Years Parenting Programs in the United Kingdom, Norway, Ireland, Holland and Portugal. Some of these studies use the prevention version of the program and others are offered as treatment programs for children with conduct problems and ADHD.

See Incredible Years web site for these articles: http://incredibleyears.com/research-library/

Summary

Despite the successful research by the developer and other researchers in 5 other countries, there are still many challenges ahead – of course including the potential funding restrictions arising from cuts in government funding. Early intervention requires sustained support from politicians, agency directors, trainers, mentors and coaches.