Increasing the sensitivity of childcare providers: Applying the video-feedback intervention in a group care setting
Most infants and toddlers in the affluent countries of the world are enrolled in out-of-home childcare with nonparental caregivers. Therefore, the quality of the childcare these children receive and its implications for their development are receiving increasing attention from researchers, policy makers, and practitioners (Oser & Cohen, 2003). In the United States, assessments of quality in infanttoddler childcare in several large-scale research studies have produced sobering results. Many children birth to three years of age receive care of only minimal quality level or below on well-validated scales (e.g., NICHD Early Child Care Research Network, 1996; Whitebook, Howes, & Phillips, 1989). Of particular concern is the low level of process quality care infants and toddlers receive, usually defined as the quality of the child’s day-to-day interactions and experiences in the childcare setting. Moreover, the quality level of childcare received by very young children is consistently lower than the quality level for children three to five years old. This suggests that particular attention is needed to understand and improve childcare for infants and toddlers, with the ultimate goal of supporting optimal early development.