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Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY)


Barbara Gilkey, Arkansas State HIPPY Director
Arkansas Children's Hospital
800 Marshall Street, Slot 651
Little Rock, AR 72202

(212) 532-7730          

In-Home Support Speciality
3-5 years Target
Model Rating

The primary goal of the Home Instruction Program for Parents of Preschool Youngsters Program is to prevent academic underachievement of children when they enter school by increasing the degree and variety of literacy experiences in the home. By working with parents one-on-one in their homes or in parent group meetings on a regular basis, they are empowered as educators and advocates for their children. HIPPY helps parents provide school-readiness skills to their children. It also enhances parent-child interaction, improves parenting skills, brings literacy into the home, reaches hard-to-reach families, promotes dialogue about the education of young children within the community. Further, HIPPY focuses on economically disadvantaged parents and their preschool aged children who may not be involved in parenting programs or in early childhood network supports for parents.

The primary method of instruction is role play, which provides a nonthreatening learning environment. Role-playing also helps parents to develop empathy for the developmental capabilities of their young children. Trained HIPPY home visitors meet with parents to show them how to teach the skill-building activities to their children. Language skills are developed through activities and storybooks that are frequently read to children, listening, asking and answering questions, and picture reading. Problem solving skills are developed through numerous pre-mathematical activities in which children learn spatial relationships, attributes, and quantities, as well as through matrix activities, sequencing and categorizing. Other activities help develop visual, auditory, tactile, problem solving, critical thinking and creativity skills.

Evaluations on classroom adaptation, home visitors growth and development, program implementation, model validation, and children's outcomes at end of second grade have all shown positive effects from participation in the program. Broad differences in measured competence and classroom behavior favoring HIPPY children over children with no formal preschool experience were found. There were no differences between HIPPY children and children with other types of formal preschool experience. A recent evaluation of children who completed third and sixth grades in Arkansas showed positive effects for HIPPY children who completed two full years of the program.


Implementation & Training Costs:

Organizations and agencies interested in starting a HIPPY Program in their community must complete and submit an application to HIPPY USA in New York. A one-week intensive training session is conducted twice each year. Programs must pay a $850.00 requisition fee that includes all training materials, transportation to the training site, and some meals.

More specific information on license and affiliation as well as program development, training and technical assistance may be obtained by requesting a HIPPY Start-Up Manual from:

220 East 23rd St. Suite 300
New York, NY 10010

Elisabeth Eklind,
  Execuitve Director of HIPPY USA
Gale Hart,
  National Program Director
(212) 532-7730


Revised 11/10/2002

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