Create Your Own Case Toolkit: Building Your Family Engagement Skills and Knowledge
Stories help people form relationships and make sense of the world around them. Business, medicine, and education have long used stories---or cases---as teaching and professional development tools. In the family engagement field, reading cases challenges those who work with families to consider multiple perspectives; think critically about real-world issues; communicate effectively; and identify family strengths. These are all abilities that educators need to work effectively with families. With this in mind, Harvard Family Research Project and the Community Engagement Team in the Department of Human Services in Cambridge, Massachusetts, have developed the Create Your Own Case Toolkit. The toolkit was inspired by your enthusiastic response to our casebook, Preparing Educators to Engage Families, and the family engagement cases on our website. The Create Your Own Case Toolkit is a practitioner-driven professional development resource designed to help those who work with families---teachers, librarians, afterschool staff, and camp counselors, to name a few---reflect on experiences with families and recreate stories as cases. The resulting cases that they develop can be used to create conversations among practitioners and families in parent cafés and formal meetings. These conversations will enable practitioners to better serve children and families.
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