Training for Trainers Opportunity


Download the article, Relationship-Based Care for Infant and Toddlers: A Training for Trainers Overview to learn more about this training series and how to bring this opportunity to your state, territory, or Tribe.

Article – Relationship-Based Care for Infants and Toddlers: A Training for Trainers Overview

This series provides rationale and guidance for implementing relationship-based care in family child care homes and child care centers that serve infants, toddlers, and their families.

The content is based on the understanding that relationships are essential for healthy development. Responsive, nurturing relationships with caring adults provide safety and support for infants and toddlers to develop a sense of security and discover the world around them. Group care for infants and toddlers should be organized to promote the development and strengthening of relationships between caregivers, infants, toddlers, and families.

The Program for Infant/Toddler Care (PITC) offers six essential program practices as a framework for relationship-based care (Lally & Mangione, n.d.). PITC’s program practices create an opportunity for responsive interactions that can lead to deep, nurturing relationships between the caregivers and the infants and toddlers over time.

  • Primary caregiving is the practice in which the care of each infant or toddler is assigned to one specific caregiver who is principally responsible for caring for that child in the care setting and communicating with the child’s family.
  • Continuity of care is the practice in which primary caregivers and children stay together for as long as possible—preferably for the children’s first 3 years—creating opportunities for caregiver-child, caregiver family, and child-child relationships to develop and deepen over time.
  • Small group care is the practice in which primary caregivers provide care for infants and toddlers in discrete groups, creating an intimate setting for interactions, care routines, and exploration.
  • Individualized care is the practice of being responsive and adapting to each infant’s and toddler’s interests, needs, and abilities to support their healthy development.
  • Culturally responsive care is the practice of caring for children from culturally diverse families in ways that are consistent with their home practices and values.
  • Inclusive care is the practice of actively including infants and toddlers with disabilities or delays in group care settings, with appropriate accommodation and support.

In addition to the six program practices, this series includes an introductory session, a philosophical foundation for relationship-based care, and an overview of adult learning and planning for next steps. The sessions are designed to be facilitated by training and technical assistance professionals, including trainers, consultants, specialists, coaches, college faculty, program monitors, and mentors. State, territory, and Tribal leads may also participate in this training, as appropriate. Each session includes a slide deck, resources, learning activities, video links, a detailed facilitator’s guide, and participant worksheet. Facilitators can tailor the sessions to the needs, interests, and availability of the participants.

Training Sessions

This Relationship-Based Care for Infants and Toddlers: A Training for Trainers includes nine sessions:

  • Session 1.An Introduction to Relationship-Based Care for Infants and Toddlers
  • Session 1. The Foundation of Relationship-Based Care
  • Session 2. Primary Caregiving
  • Session 3. Continuity of Care
  • Session 4. Small Group Care
  • Session 5. Individualized Care
  • Session 6. Culturally Responsive Care
  • Session 7. Inclusive Care
  • Session 8. Planning for Adult Learners
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Training Objectives

  • Deepen participants’ understanding of how to support infant and toddler learning and development in childcare settings.
  • Explore PITC’s six essential program practices for relationship-based care.
  • Consider approaches to training and technical assistance and support needed for implementation efforts.

Training Format

This training for trainers can be offered in person, as a virtual training, or as a hybrid training―a combination of in-person and distance learning. To request this training series and to discuss how the training format may be individualized to the needs and interests of your state, territory, or Tribe contact the Child Care State Capacity Building Center’s Infant/Toddler Specialist Network at [email protected]

Recommended Preparation

The series is designed for training and technical assistance professionals who have a background in infant and toddler learning, development, and care. There is a substantial amount of content and guidance in the materials; however, the facilitator should be well versed on the topics in order to respond to questions and concerns not covered in the materials.

Requirements for Participants and Implementation Support

Participants in the training for trainers commit to facilitating the training in their communities within a certain time frame and receiving ongoing implementation support from the Infant/Toddler Specialist. The specific time frame is defined by the participants, the Infant/Toddler Specialist, and the state, territory, Tribe, or host agency. Most frequently, the time frame is 6 months. Participants have the flexibility to individualize certain aspects of the training to meet the interests and needs of the infant and toddler caregivers they support. When participants develop their own training, they will work with the Infant/Toddler Specialist to maintain fidelity. Participants will also receive ongoing individualized support from the Infant/Toddler Specialist as they move toward broader implementation. Implementation support can be tailored to include the following:

  • Meetings to support implementation
  • Coaching
  • Consultation
  • Office hours with the Infant/Toddler Specialist


Lally, J. R., & Mangione, P. L. (n.d.). About the Program for Infant/Toddler Care. WestEd; California Departmentof Education.