EHS TA Paper No. 15: Observation: The Heart of Individualizing Responsive Care


This paper supports staff in Early Head Start and Migrant and Seasonal Head Start programs who provide professional development. It offers information on observation as well as strategies to support and strengthen this important component of quality infant and toddler care. Use this resource with teachers, family child care providers, and home visitors who work with infants, toddlers, and their families.

Observation informs individualization. It is the first step in providing the kind of individualized, responsive care for infants and toddlers that builds relationships, supports attachment, and promotes healthy brain development. Because individualization cannot happen without observation, this technical assistance paper focuses on observation:

  • What it is
  • Why it is important
  • What to observe
  • How to observe and document
  • How to set up observation systems
  • Reviewing and reflecting on observation information

Source: Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center

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