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Children sit next to each other on a classroom carpet. One child has her hand extended, thumb raised.


Amanda Gooch

Amanda Gooch

February 1, 2023

Human interactions are an active ingredient in child development. As early childhood educators, there is a basic level of communication that we draw upon when we have simple interactions with children. Together let’s explore these simple interactions and what importance they play in early childhood development. Simple interactions are playful, respectful, enjoyable and rewarding interactions and experiences for young children. Simple interactions with children are an important aspect of early childhood education and are a building block for many skills including problem solving, social and emotional intelligence and self-regulation. Simple interactions provide opportunities for children to safely explore, test out, and try new things. By establishing these simple interactions through connection, reciprocity, and inclusion, we are developing positive relationships with young children and an opportunity for them to grow and thrive.

On our next professional development day, we will welcome Dr. Dana Winters from the Fred Rogers Institute as she presents “Simple Interactions.” Simple Interactions (SI) is a practice-based, strengths-focused, and community-driven approach to support helpers who serve children, youth, and families. The following link will provide you with a video which demonstrates the idea of how systems and communities can work together to support a relationship-based vision.

Simple Interactions Video

Did you know that February 11th is National Make a Friend Day? It’s absolutely incredible that on our next professional development day we get to honor the legacy of Fred Rogers by being compassionate, gracious and kind hearted to those around us. In one of Fred Rogers’s final good-bye messages, he addresses his “television neighbors” directly, “… I’m so grateful to you for helping the children in your life to know that you’ll do everything you can to keep them safe. And to help them express their feelings in ways that will bring healing in many different neighborhoods. It’s such a good feeling to know that we’re lifelong friends.” (The Good Neighbor: The Life and Work of Fred Rogers by Maxwell King pg. 352)          

The message from Fred Rogers still resonates today and I “simply” can’t wait to make friends with you all.

As always, I thank you for your dedication and willingness to pour into the next generation through education as we elevate and promote the highest quality early childhood development and education in Indian River County.

Wishing you the best,


A man sits at a classroom table with a boy
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