Make The Connection (MTC) – A program for parents and babies, aged from birth to one, helps parents interact with their babies in ways that promote secure attachment, communication and brain development. This intensive and enjoyable program combines hands-on activities, parent reflection and discussion as well as personalized video feedback.
MTC uses an experiential, adult learning approach which takes into account diverse learning styles and modalities. It leaves room for parents to individualize the program messages and information depending on their personal and cultural experiences. The learning process is further enhanced by the supportive ways in which group facilitators relate to parents – by connecting, communicating and facilitating in ways that parallel a nurturing parent-infant relationship.
The program can be offered to parents and babies in a nine-week group format, in home-visits or adapted for drop-in programs. The group usually includes 8 to 10 families. Sessions are co-led by two trained MTC Group Facilitators, twice a year on Monday afternoons, from 2:30 to 4:00 pm.
Make the Connection takes the view that infants experience themselves and the world within the context of relationship. Brain studies have recently confirmed this theory by demonstrating how neural pathways are enhanced by nurturing, responsive caregiver input that fosters a healthy relationship. Thus our motto – Relationships, not things, make brighter babies. -Dr. Wm. Sears.
The core messages of MTC 0-1 are broken down into three interrelated systems of infant development:
Make the Connection with Love within a nurturing relationship, infants
develop a secure attachment that includes falling in love with the parent, trust in
the parent’s responsiveness, emotional and physiological regulation and a positive
sense of self.
Make the Connection with Language within a responsive relationship, infants
discover the power and process of two-way communication, joint attention and
Make the Connection with Learning within a developmentally attuned
relationship, an infant’s natural curiosity and motivation to learn are supported.
Videotaping is an essential medium for learning in Make the Connection. At two sessions, the guided play time is shortened to allow time for reviewing positive highlights of individual parent-baby videotapes. In reviewing the tapes, the group facilitator helps parents recognize positive aspects of interaction with their child, become more aware of their child�s signals and provide positive feedback to support parents.
MTC training is offered via First Three Years.