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As we turn the calendar to a new year, we take this opportunity to look back at past work and imagine what we can do better—and perhaps differently—in 2016. At Harvard Family Research Project, we find inspiration to improve our work from change makers like you. In this update, we are proud to share both small and large steps that are reshaping family engagement.

We are quilting a story of transformation and innovation: how we communicate the importance of the family‒school partnership, build relationships in different settings and with different partners, use digital media, and explore research-practice connections. Click on the pictures on the quilt to access resources:

Quilting Stories of Innovation in Family Engagement Video by Innova Schools explores what happens when a father listens to his young son's school experience, 30 years later, when that son is an adult Hear-me.net helps youth prepare multimedia projects on community issues HFRP describes a modified human-centered design process to help educators engage families Discover Zero to Three's Let's Talk About Math video series Share with us your family engagement story! Read about New York Public Library's Daddy & Me program held at NYC correctional facilities Helping mothers experiencing homelessness is the Siena House Lullaby Project (New York Times Op-Doc) Researchers present practical strategies in Parental Involvement Overrated? Don't Buy It (CNN) Watch Why Family Engagement Is Important (YouTube)

Wrap yourself up in this quilt of inspiration! Also, explore our new global quilt of innovation in family engagement.

Why Family Engagement Is Important      Why Family Engagement Is Important communicates the value of family‒school partnerships with this entertaining animated video.

Parental Involvement Overrated? Don't Buy It
  Parental Involvement Overrated? Don’t Buy It offers practical and low-cost communication strategies to help parents “tune in” to their children’s school attendance and performance.
 The Siena House Lullaby Project   The Siena House Lullaby Project brings together professional musicians and mothers experiencing homelessness to compose songs for the mothers to sing to their infants.
 New York Public Library   New York Public Library creates a literacy program that helps strengthen the bond between parents who are incarcerated and their children.
 Add Your Story!   Add Your Story! invites you to share your innovative family engagement story, idea, or practice.
 Let's Talk Math   Let’s Talk About Math is a series of videos, in Spanish and English, that highlights how parent‒child interactions can build early math skills.
 Pipe Cleaners and Popsicle Sticks: Making Ideas Visible   Pipe Cleaners and Popsicle Sticks: Making Ideas Visible describes a modified human-centered design process to help educators engage families in children’s transition to school.
 Hear-me.net   Hear-Me.net pairs multimedia projects and youth voices to provide a platform for youth to contribute to the discussion of community issues.
 Innova Schools   Innova Schools explores what happens when a father listens to his young son’s school experience, 30 years later, when that son is an adult.

We hope you enjoy our selections and feel inspired to build stronger relationships with families. We invite you to read the stories from the field shared with us and explore our global quilt.

Happy New Year!
Heather, Elena, Carolina, Margaret, Sarah, Helen, and Lorette

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