February 18, 2003 Feature

Serving Children Who Are Culturally and Linguistically Diverse

A variety of resources are available from the Early Childhood Research Institute on Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS). Special collections listing some available evaluation tools and newsletters are located in the Materials section. Additionally, Child Find Materials, at http://clas.uiuc.edu/special/childfind/index.html , feature reproducible informative brochures and booklets such as:

  • Birth to Six Prescreen Chart for Vision, Hearing and Development in Ampheric Ethiopian, Cambodian, Chinese, English, Farsi, Hmong, Hungarian, Korean, Laotian, Polish, Russian, Spanish, or Vietnamese. This prescreening chart gives brief guidelines for helping parents and professionals to recognize a child's possible problem areas in vision, hearing, and development ranging from birth to 6 years of age.
  • Developmental Growth for Children 3 to 5 Years of Age: General Guidelines, and Desarrollo de Crecimiento Para Ninos 3 a 5 Anos de Edad, Guias Generales. This brochure provides general guidelines for child development from 3 to 5 years of age.
  • Watch Me Grow in English and Sioux provides a list of appropriate toys for young children of different age groups from birth to five.
  • Early Intervention Is Critical in Arabic, Chinese, Hmong, Italian, Japanese, Khmer, Korean, Laotian, Russian, Spanish, Vietnamese, or Yiddish. A brochure dedicated to raising public awareness of early intervention.

Several technical reports, at http://clas.uiuc.edu/techreports.html , examine the extent to which effective practices are represented in the delivery of early intervention services to families and young children (birth to age 5) who come from diverse cultural and linguistic groups. These reports may be used for workshops or for college curricula. Technical reports that may be of particular interest to the professions include:

  • Conducting Child Assessments
  • Moving Towards Cross-Cultural Competence in Lifelong Personnel Development: A Review of the Literature
  • Second Language Acquisition in the Preschool Years: What We Know and How We Can Effectively Communicate With Young Second Language Learners
  • A Guide for Professionals Serving Hearing Children with Deaf Parents
  • Sensitivity to Cultural and Linguistic Diversity in Early Intervention Family Information Gathering
  • Working with Interpreters to Plan Early Childhood Services with Bilingual and Multilingual Families

The Early Childhood Research Institute on Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS) identifies, evaluates, and promotes effective and appropriate early intervention practices and preschool practices that are sensitive and respectful to children and families from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

The CLAS Institute is a collaborative effort of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, The Council for Exceptional Children, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, the ERIC Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education, and the ERIC Clearinghouse on Disabilities and Gifted Education. Funding is provided by the Office of Special Education Programs of the U.S. Department of Education. Visit the CLAS Web site at http://clas.uiuc.edu/index.html .


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