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CSEFEL Case Study

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(1) The Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning, or CSEFEL, is a training model designed to provide teachers with curricula and skills to promote social-emotional learning in their preschool classrooms in order to prevent challenging behaviors (CSEFEL, n.d.). I interviewed Dr. Mary Louise Hemmeter, who is the principle investigator at CSEFEL at Vanderbilt University. This center works with child care programs, preschools, and Head Start programs to prepare children for the transition into kindergarten, where self-regulatory and social-emotional skills are necessary (Hemmeter, Ostrosky, & Fox, 2006). This program promotes social-emotional skills for all children in the classroom to prevent challenging behaviors, and…show more content…
When I asked for the logic model of CSEFEL, I was provided with the graphic which can be seen in figure 1, and was told that this is based on a public health model. While this graphic is not a logic model, I do believe that it communicates the theory of change utilized by CSEFEL (Hemmeter et al., 2006). In order to reach the long-term goal of preventing challenging behaviors, children must learn social-emotional skills and receive targeted interventions if they already have problematic behaviors. The conditions necessary for achieving this goal are at the base of the pyramid, which is aimed at creating a nurturing and safe school environment where children can learn skills and teachers can manage challenging behaviors (Hemmeter et al., 2006). Once this foundation is met, the second level of the pyramid aims to encourage teachers to utilize naturally occurring circumstances and lessons to teach social-emotional skills in their classrooms to prevent challenging behaviors (Fox, Carta, Strain, Dunlap, & Hemmeter, 2010). At the top of the Teaching Pyramid, children who already have high levels of challenging behaviors will receive targeted interventions through creating a treatment plan with teachers and…show more content…
CSEFEL is currently performing a study which is across multiple sites (conducted by both Vanderbilt and the University of Florida), with samples currently exceeding 500 children and about 40 teachers. They are expecting to find that when early child care professionals are trained in the Teaching Pyramid, challenging behaviors are reduced in their classrooms. This will be measured by changes in the TPOT data over a two-year period (eight points of data collection), which may demonstrate a decline in challenging behaviors over time, as compared to the control group of teachers not utilizing the Teaching Pyramid. They are also expecting that when all teachers in a preschool are adopting the Teaching Pyramid methods, there will be greater fidelity of implementation (Hemmeter & Fox, 2009). With this, they expect a greater decline in challenging behaviors and increased fidelity of the teachers’ implementation of Teaching Pyramid methods, as evidenced by the TPOT (Hemmeter, Fox, & Snyder, 2013). (10) In addition to its utility as a fidelity measure, the TPOT also serves as an outcome measure as it collects information on challenging behavior incidents and the teacher’s management of these situations. They are measuring challenging behaviors over time through collecting TPOT data
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