Stop and Play
About the Campaign
- The Stop and Play Campaign is designed to raise awareness about the social and emotional development in early childhood and the important role parents and caregivers play in fostering positive development.
- The Stop and Play Campaign is sponsored by the Missouri Coordinating Board for Early Childhood.
- The Coordinating Board for Early Childhood (CBEC) is the state’s public/private entity for coordinating a cohesive system of early childhood programs and services intended to support the healthy development and school readiness of all Missouri children from birth through age five.
- For more information on the CBEC, visit: www.dss.mo.gov/cbec
Campaign Creative Materials
What is Early Childhood Development?
- Early childhood development is an incredible time of physical, cognitive, and social and emotional development.
- Studies show that after the first 2000 days—roughly 5 ½ years--your child’s brain is already 90% developed.
- The care and experiences you help provide for them in that time plays a huge role in building the social and cognitive skills they will need for the rest of her life.
- A growing body of science shows that early childhood influences, positive or negative, have the potential to impact lifelong health and social outcomes. The Center for the Developing Child at Harvard University, has posted a three-part series video series, entitled, "Three Core Concepts in Early Development" from the Center and the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child, to highlight the science behind early childhood development.
- Play is a child’s work, and one of the best ways to ensure healthy brain development. Children are busy when they’re playing. And, more than that, they are learning.
- And when your children have a chance to play with you, they are also learning—that they are loved and important and that they are fun to be around. These social-emotional skills give them the self-confidence they need to build loving and supportive relationships all their lives.
- To illustrate how crucial caregiver experiences and interactions are in the development of young children, the following video shows how the prolonged lack of attention impacts infant’s socialization. The video, “Still Face Experiment,” features Dr. Edward Tronick from the University of Massachusetts.
- So what can you do to support your baby or toddler’s everyday learning? There are lots of resources to help you. This fact sheet will help give you some ideas on how you can support your child’s learning through everyday activities.
So what does NORMAL Childhood Development look like?
- Many parents wonder if their children or developing in a “typical” and healthy manner. Young children develop at their own pace, but there are some commonly recognized developmental milestones.
- Learn more about developmental milestones by age and download their check-lists, by visiting the Centers for Disease Control, Act Early Campaign.
For more information on early childhood brain development, check out these fact sheets:
- Core Concepts in the Science of Early Childhood Development, this document explains key concepts in brain development in Flip Chart Format.
- InBrief: The Science of Early Childhood Development Addresses basic concepts of early childhood development.
- Early Experiences Shape the Brain. Provides four concepts to remember about early childhood.
- Connecting Neurons, Concepts and People. This document summarizes what is known about early brain development and corrects common misunderstandings.
Social and Emotional Development
What is social and emotional development?
- Social-emotional development is a child’s ability to understand the feelings of others, control his or her own feelings and behaviors, and get along with peers.
- In order for children to attain the basic skills that they need such as cooperation, following directions, demonstrating self-control and paying attention, they must have social-emotional skills.
- Social and emotional development involves the acquisition of a set of skills. Key among them are the ability to:
- Identify and understand one’s own feelings
- Accurately read and comprehend emotional states in others
- Manage strong emotions and their expression in a constructive manner
- Regulate one’s own behavior
- Develop empathy for others
- Establish and sustain relationships
Why is positive social and emotional development important?
- A child’s social and emotional development provides them with a sense of who they are, how they learn, and how to establish positive, enriching relationships.
- A child's positive relationship with trusting and caring adults is the key to successful emotional and social development.
What can you as a caregiver do to support positive social and emotional development?
- Model positive behaviors;
- Interact affectionately;
- Show consideration for feelings, desires and needs;
- Express interest in daily activities;
- Respect their viewpoints;
- Express pride in accomplishments; and
- Provide encouragement and support during times of stress.
For more information on how to support social-emotional development in your child, check out these resources from Zero to Three.
- Social-Emotional Development From Birth to Three-
- How Young Children Begin Learning Self-Control from Birth to Three -
These age-based handouts focus on how children begin learning self-control—the ability to manage their emotions and stick to the limits you set.
In addition, the Center for Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning has a wealth of resources for parents. Resources and tools for parents are available on their website for free that help parents teach their children to identify and express their emotions, teach them about feelings, how to cooperate, and how to make the most out of playtime among other topics.
- You Are Not Alone! Many parents and caregivers struggle with the same types of challenges, raising and working with young children—eating, sleeping, behavior, and more—there is help!
- For more information on how to cope with challenging behaviors Zero to Three provides parents with valuable information for parents on how to respond to common challenging behaviors from biting, to sleep challenges, to aggression.
- In today’s world, children are spending more time in the care of another adult other than their parents. Early childhood education, whether provided in a center or by a family or friend or neighbor, all have the potential to provide the positive learning experiences for children need so that they may be successful later in life.
- Whether you need help finding quality childcare, need help determining what quality child care is, are caring for children yourself, or want to know what your child needs to be ready for school, there are a lot of great resources to help guide your efforts.
- Center for Child & Human Development, was established over four decades ago to improve the quality of life for all children and youth, especially those with, or at risk for, special needs and their families.
- Center for the Developing Child, Harvard University, The Center on the Developing Child generates, translates, and applies knowledge in the service of improving life outcomes for children in the United States and throughout the world.
- Child Care Aware of Missouri serves as a community resource on child care throughout the state. We help families find quality child care, preschool and after-school programs for their children. The organization works with child care program owners, directors and teachers to improve the quality of their programs.
- Head Start is a federal program that promotes the school readiness of children ages birth to 5 from low-income families by enhancing their cognitive, social and emotional development. Head Start programs provide comprehensive services to enrolled children and their families, which include health, nutrition, social services and other services determined to be necessary by family needs assessments, in addition to education and cognitive development services.
- Missouri Coordinating Board for Early Childhood, is the state’s public/private entity for coordinating a cohesive system of early childhood programs and services intended to support the healthy development and school readiness of all Missouri children from birth through age five.
- National Child Traumatic Stress Network was established to improve access to care, treatment, and services for traumatized children and adolescents exposed to traumatic events. This section of NCTSN.org provides information about the Network itself.
- Nurses for Newborns services to babies who are born with medical problems, born to teen moms or born to mothers with disabilities/mental health concerns, or who are born into families who do not have money for even basic necessities. In addition to medical care, Nurses for Newborns assists families whenever possible with donated materials needed for safe care, such as diapers, formula, baby food, clothing, and bedding.
- Parents as Teachers provides the information, support and encouragement parents need to help their children develop optimally during the crucial early years of life.
- Project Launch is a grant program of the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) that seeks to promote the wellness of young children birth to age eight. Project LAUNCH focuses on improving the systems that serve young children with the goal of helping all children reach physical, social, emotional, behavioral, and cognitive milestones. This Web site is a resource for Project LAUNCH grantees and others interested in learning about how to promote young child wellness.
- United for Children works to improve quality and accessibility to services for children and youth by empowering and inspiring families, professionals and the community.
- Zero to Three is a national non-profit organization that provides parents, professionals, and policymakers the knowledge and know-how to nurture early development.