What We Do
Why early childhood?
Early childhood is the period of greatest brain, biological, and psychological development; one million new neural connections are formed every second in the earliest years. Domains of development are highly integrated. So, what happens in the early years affects lifelong health, learning, and behavior.
Systemic and structural inequalities based on race, ethnicity, income, and other demographics are the root causes of disparities in health and well-being, learning, and achievement. These disparities emerge very early in life, increase over the course of development, and have been widening in recent years. Now is the time to advance work that seeks to close these gaps for current and future generations of families with young children.
Stanford Center on Early Childhood takes a developmental and interdisciplinary perspective on early childhood. We believe that health is linked to learning, that children learn everywhere, and that measurement as a tool can help inform and accelerate the science of early childhood learning.
We refer to our operating model as the IDEA cycle: Identify, Design, Evaluate, Accelerate. The IDEA cycle provides a framework for identifying critical issues in early childhood, designing a proposed solution, evaluating its effectiveness (what works for whom), and accelerating its impact. Importantly, the IDEA cycle is iterative in nature, encouraging continuous improvement and ongoing development.
The FIND program
The Filming Interactions to Nurture Development (FIND) program is a highly effective video coaching program for parents and caregivers of children birth to age 5 that facilitates responsive, supportive caregiving. Developed by Philip Fisher.
FIND Professional Development (FIND-PD) is for early childhood educators who want to enhance their positive interactions with children.
The Continuous Improvement and Rapid Cycle Learning and Evaluation (CIRCLE) team provides technical assistance and consultation to external partners including, but not limited to, community-based organizations, governmental agencies, and philanthropic funders. The purpose of these engagements is to help early childhood-focused initiatives understand their implementation and impact. The work to support partners exists on a continuum from creating an initial Theory of Impact (TOI), to being a full program evaluator. This approach was developed by Philip Fisher.