This material is also available in a PDF format: Working together: Suggestions for families and staff [2MB]

Suggestions for staff

  • Find out the preferred names of parents and carers and address them by these.
  • Make personal contact with families new to the service to get to know them and try to understand concerns, if any. 
  • Ask families about their day and take an interest in them as you would your own friends. Respect information families share about their child and other family members.   
  • Share information about your own day and interests. Relationships develop as people start to share some personal information.
  • Let families know their involvement is valued and allow them to decide their own level of involvement.
  • Have an open door policy at the early childhood service where families are welcome throughout the day.
  • Inform families of the practices and values of your early childhood service and check how these fit in with families’ practices and values. Ask how families’ practices and values can be included in the service. 
  • Create opportunities to celebrate family diversity within the service.
  • Ask families for ideas on how they would like differences such as language, culture, family values or disabilities to be represented and supported.

Suggestions for families

  • Find out the preferred names of staff and address them by these. 
  • Ask staff about their day and take an interest in them as you would your own friends.
  • Share information about your own day and interests and what your child enjoys at home. Relationships develop as people start to share some personal information.
  • Let staff know that their involvement with your child is valued.
  • Consider ways in which you can be involved in the service. This will be different for all families depending on circumstances.  
  • Share family and community values with staff and let them know how they can support your children. Find out the practices and values of your early childhood service. 
  • Share children’s achievements like milestones (e.g., being able to feed themselves) or events (e.g., riding their first bike).
  • Let staff know if something is affecting your child’s feelings and behaviour, for example, getting a new pet, having a birthday party or a family member going away.
  • Share information that may help support your child at the service, for example, specialist recommendations on how to help with speech or exercises to help with body strength.