Birth to 5: Watch Me Thrive Resources

Our group of federal partners has designed this collection of resources to connect providers with tools focused on child development as well as developmental and behavioral screening. We will continue to update this collection to give providers essential information and professional development they need to work with families and make sure our youngest children receive screenings and support early.

While use of these resources is not required, we hope they will support providers in helping children develop and reach their full potential.


General Technical Assistance

Center for Parent Information and Resources
The Center for Parent Information and Resources serves as a central resource of information and products on how to support families of children with disabilities.

Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL)
CSEFEL supports the dissemination of evidence-based practices focused on the social emotional development and school readiness of young children birth through 5.

Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT)
The EPSDT benefit provides comprehensive and preventive health care services for children under age 21 who are enrolled in Medicaid. EPSDT is key to ensuring that children and adolescents receive appropriate preventive, dental, mental health, and developmental, and specialty services.

IRIS Center
This center offers a wide variety of resources on evidence-based practices, including instructional modules and research summaries, for children with disabilities

National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCSTN)
NCTSN’s collaboration of frontline providers, researchers, and families is committed to raising the standard of care while increasing access to services. Combining knowledge of child development, expertise in the full range of child traumatic experiences, and dedication to evidence-based practices, the NCTSN changes the course of children’s lives by changing the course of their care.

Resources for State Medicaid and CHIP Agencies
Fact sheet from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) that provides screening guidance for state Medicaid and CHIP agencies.

Technical Assistance Center for Social Emotional Intervention
This center supported the dissemination of evidence-based best practices to enhance the social-emotional competence of young children with, or at risk for, delays or disabilities.

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General Tips and Tools

These resources promote developmental awareness and screening in a variety of provider settings.

Developmental Milestones
See milestones that children should reach from 2 months to 5 years of age, plus interactive tools to help keep track of the milestones.

Developmental Monitoring and Screening
Learn about the importance of developmental and behavioral screening and monitoring, view a fact sheet or order free materials.

Tips for Talking with Families
This sample conversation can give providers ideas of how to talk with parents and families about developmental and behavioral concerns and screening.

Tips for Early Care and Education Providers
Early learning teachers can learn how to incorporate simple learning activities and concepts in everyday routines.

Backpack Connection Series
These resources offer guidance for teachers and families to work together to help young children develop social emotional skills and reduce challenging behavior.

“Go Out and Play” Kit
This kit contains information about monitoring developmental milestones, suggestions for a safe and successful activity day, tips about talking to parents if you suspect a child has a developmental delay, and a special pullout section with activities to share with parents for at-home play.

When to Seek Help for Children’s Problem Behavior
This resource provides guidance for seeking assistance from outside experts on children’s behavior.

Practical Strategies for Teachers and Caregivers
A variety of tools including posters, tip sheets, and support plans, for Scripted Stories for Social Situations, Book Nook, and Teaching Social Emotional Skills. These materials are provided by the Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning.

Connecting Kids to Coverage
Learn outreach strategies to get eligible uninsured kids enrolled in CHIP and Medicaid.

Resources to Share with Families

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Behavioral Health

Building Blocks
“Building Blocks for a Healthy Future” is an early childhood substance abuse prevention initiative that educates parents and caregivers about the basics of prevention in order to promote a healthy lifestyle. The materials and the website are designed for parents and caregivers to use with their children, ages 3-6, and focus on better communication, activities for promoting "family time," and information on risk factors that may increase children's risk for using alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drugs.

Identifying Mental Health and Substance Abuse Problems of Children and Adolescents
This free resource offers guidance and tools for early identification of children and adolescents with mental health or substance use problems in various settings: child welfare; early and primary care; family, domestic violence, and runaway shelters; juvenile justice; and schools.

National Center on Substance Abuse and Child Welfare
This center provides information, expert consultation, training and technical assistance to child welfare, dependency court and substance abuse treatment professionals to improve the safety, permanency, well-being and recovery outcomes for children, parents and families.

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Child Welfare

Child Welfare Information Gateway
Child Welfare Information Gateway connects child welfare, adoption, and related professionals to information, resources, and tools covering topics on child welfare, child abuse and neglect, out-of-home care, adoption, and more.

National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections (NRCPFC)
The NRCPFC builds capacity in child welfare systems to enhance child and family outcomes pertinent to permanency achievement, placement stability, and a wide range of other foster care and well-being issues.

State Protection and Advocacy Systems (P&As)
P&As are dedicated to the ongoing fight for the personal and civil rights of individuals with developmental disabilities. P&As provide legal support to traditionally unserved or underserved populations to help them navigate the legal system to achieve resolution and encourage systems change.

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Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems
This program seeks to improve the healthy physical, social, and emotional development of children during infancy and early childhood; eliminate disparities; and increase access to early childhood services by engaging in systems development and integration activities and collective impact approaches that improve the quality and availability of early childhood services at both the state and local levels. It also focuses on coordination of the expansion of developmental screening activities in early care and education settings statewide by connecting pediatric and other child health leaders with child care health consultants to link training and referrals among medical homes, early intervention services, child care programs and families.

Project LAUNCH
This initiative, funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), focuses on children from birth through age 8 with the goal that all children reach social, emotional, behavioral, physical, and cognitive milestones. Over five years, these communities increase the quality and availability of evidence-based programs, improve collaboration among child-serving organizations, and integrate physical and behavioral health services and supports for children and their families. Lessons learned from the communities guide state- and tribal-level systems changes and policy improvements. Strong partnerships between the state or tribe and local communities lead to the sustainability and replication of successful practices on a large scale and to systems improvements that have an impact beyond the life of the grant.

Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge
This federal program seeks to improve early learning and development programs for young children by supporting state efforts to: (1) increase the number and percentage of low-income and disadvantaged children in each age group of infants, toddlers, and preschoolers who are enrolled in high-quality early learning programs; (2) design and implement an integrated system of high-quality early learning programs and services; and (3) ensure that any use of assessments conforms with the recommendations of the National Research Council's reports on early childhood.

Systems of Care Early Childhood Community of Practice
SAMHSA’s Early Childhood Community of Practice (COP) provides an opportunity for discussion, collaboration, and the exchange of ideas and resources related to young children between the ages of birth to 8 who have mental health challenges and are currently being served by system of care communities. For greater detail on the importance of social-emotional wellness, what a system of care is, and how young children can thrive as a result of systems of care, please see Systems of Care: Addressing the Mental Health Needs of Young Children and Their Families.

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Early Care and Education

Early Head Start National Resource Center
This center provides expertise, materials, resources, information, training and technical assistance related to services for infants, toddlers, pregnant women, and families.

Head Start Center for Inclusion
This center offers resources and materials that include web-based learning opportunities and evidence-based instructional strategies for providers to learn innovative and research-based practices to improve their work with children who have disabilities.

Head Start National Center on Health: Social and Emotional Health
This technical assistance website provides information, resources, and guidance for early care and education teachers and families related to social-emotional health in young children.

Regional Resource Center Program
This program assists state education agencies in improving education programs, practices, and policies that affect children with disabilities.

Infant/Toddler Development, Screening and Assessment
A professional development module created to support consultants working in child care settings, especially those who have not had education or training specific to infants and toddlers in group care.

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Early Intervention

CONNECT: The Center to Mobilize Early Childhood Knowledge
This center has developed practice-focused modules and instructional resources on evidence-based practices in early intervention and early childhood special education.

Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center
This center supports early intervention and preschool special education programs and practitioners. It assists states in building effective, efficient systems; scaling up and sustaining effective services; and, promoting research-based interventions for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers with disabilities and their families.

Head Start Center for Inclusion
This center offers resources and materials that include web-based learning opportunities and evidence-based instructional strategies for providers to learn innovative and research-based practices to improve their work with children who have disabilities.

Learn the Signs Act Early Autism Case Online Training
This free professional development curriculum helps educate future pediatric health care providers on fundamental components of identifying, diagnosing, and managing autism spectrum disorders through real life scenarios.

National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders
This center promotes the use of evidence-based practice for children with autism spectrum disorders and includes modules on screening, assessment, and early identification.

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Home Visitors

Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program Models
The Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program facilitates collaboration and partnership at the federal, state, and community levels to improve health and development outcomes for at-risk children through evidence-based home visiting programs.

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Primary Care

Autism Screening and Diagnosis information for Healthcare Providers
Information for health care providers about early identification of developmental disabilities, specifically the screening and diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Bright Futures
Bright Futures is a national health promotion and disease prevention initiative that addresses children's health needs in the context of family and community. Whether you are a health care or public health professional, a parent, or a child advocate, Bright Futures offers many different resources for your use in improving and maintaining the health of all children and adolescents.

Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND) programs
This professional development program enhances the clinical expertise and leadership skills of professionals from a variety of disciplines dedicated to caring for children with neurodevelopmental and other related disabilities including autism.

Learn the Signs Act Early Autism Case Online Training
This free professional development curriculum helps educate future pediatric health care providers on fundamental components of identifying, diagnosing, and managing autism spectrum disorders through real life scenarios.

National Center for Medical Home Implementation: Screening
By incorporating developmental surveillance and screening into preventive health care visits, the pediatrician has the ideal opportunity to offer anticipatory guidance to the family about supporting their child's development and to facilitate early detection of a disorder. This brochure provides an overview of the relationship between a medical home and early intervention programs.

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Last Reviewed: November 22, 2017