GESELL INSTITUTE OF CHILD DEVELOPMENT INC

Rating: 4.87 stars   31 reviews

Issues: Education

Location: 310 Prospect St New Haven CT 06511 USA

Mission:

2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

The Gesell Institute has given me the courage to continue to teach my children in my classroom what is developmentally appropriate for their age group. This is very hard as the new Kindergarten is the old first grade. Children have little or no time to play and socialize because academics and testing have become so important. Each day the children have time to play, socialize and work in small groups with hands on materials. They are able to practice concretely the skills they are learning and master these skills in their own time. They are so much happier.

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How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

We were so pleased to be asked to be a part of the GDO survey. The interns who came to our school were nothing less than professional . The children loved doing the assessment and the feedback was very positive.
I have always admired the Gesell Institute and their work with young children, not only as a teacher, but as a parent. In so many schools where Kindergarten has become the new first grade, the Gesell Institute has refused to hop on the bandwagon and respects the developmental age of the child. My hope is that more educators will see the great work the Gesell Institute has done and change policies so all children can succeed i school at their own rate and time.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have read the books for each age of a child many times. They were so helpful to me both as a teacher and a parent.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would love to see more workshops in our schools given by the institute. They are very knowledgeable in early childhood.

Rating: 5 stars  

The Gesell Institute has been an advocate, supporter, and educator for young children and their families for over 60 years. We promote an understanding of the stages of development in childhood, and identify age appropriate expectations for educators and parents to help them provide a nurturing environment for children's healthy growth.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I originally worked at the Institute 1960-67. The remaining 31 years of my career was as a school psychologist working with children and their families birth thru kindergarten. What I learned during my seven years at Gesell greatly influenced my subsequent work.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Increase the staff. The small staff has a gargantuan work load!

Rating: 5 stars  

I have two small children 5 & 6. Now that they are in school, there is such a large focus on homework and grading I feel like they are not keeping up. The institute teaches us that each child develops at their own pace through certain stages and to think all children will master reading, writing and math at the same time if it is pushed on them is not accurate. This gives me a sense of ease about how my children are developing and I trust the institute's findings that they will develop at their own pace.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the way I raise my own children.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Make them promote their materials in all 50 states boards of education.

Rating: 5 stars  

I recently attended a Gesell Institute GDO-R Workshop for the first time. It was a great 3-day experience. My instructor, who spoke from life experience, being a mother herself and a elementary school principal, was very knowledgeable presenter. I took this info back to my classroom and now even look at my students with a whole new understanding. I feel that I can now be a better teacher becuase of the Gesell Developmental Observation-Resvised. Gesell Institute has been educating adults about the ages & stages of child development since the 50s, and Gesell assessments have been successfully used for the past 85 years! Many more schools across the country should know of their expertise.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

As I said I feel more connected to my students by understanding their development and mentality better. This has helped me to shape my instruction in the classroom.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Would employ more people at the non-profit. I know they have a small staff and high demand. We were told that there are going to be 14 GDO-R workshops hosted across the country in June.

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 4 stars  

As an administrator and former teacher of an Independent School, we have been using the Gesell Developmental Observation for 30 years. Our school curriculum and programs are developmentally appropriate. We don't have a specific cut off date, rather we recommend placement based on each individual child. This practice has been very successful and it ensures children are within a class grouping where they can experience success. My school participated in the renorming study this past year and it was certainly reassuring to learn that while the language portions show some variation, the motor portions (fine/gross/grapho) have not changed from Dr. Gesell's early work 60 years ago. The LEAD Conference was a celebration of his, and many others in the field of child development, work.....and the need to redirect some of the current practices of pushing young children to do tasks that are not developmentally appropriate. We must continue to educate teachers, administrators, and parents for the benefit of the children.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

having more of my teachers learn to administer the GDO, and reinforce their understanding of ages and stages.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

more widely publicize the Institute and its work. Take every opportunity to speak to groups/media about the developmental needs of children and how important it is to match appropriately children and programs. Additional funding would help widen the Gesell Institute's influence.

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

Forty years ago, before anyone knew much about kindergarten, I was hired to start a class, in a rural public-school district in Western Massachusetts. I'd had excellent preparation to be a teacher, yet I lacked experience, or any practical method of building community confidence and support. Luckily for me (and my community) I came across an invitation to attend a Gesell Institute workshop. That's when I met Jacqueline (Jackie) Haines!
The value of what I learned at the workshop informed my practice for many years. The most often borrowed books from my family resource shelf were those that explained each chronological age in DEVELOPMENTAL terms, such as "Your Two Year Old".
The Gesell Institute is once again a part of my professional life. Why? Because good things (like some fashions) return approximately every 35 years.
Because Marcy Guddemi, who earned my trust through the work she did prior to coming to Gesell, warmly invited me to revisit the mission of the Institute and attend the LEAD conference in October 2010.
Because by attending the conference, I once again experienced the quality, devotion, and energy that fuels the mission of The Gesell Institute. The "icing on the cake" was speaking with Jackie Haines, and recalling the influence she had on my early career --- one that lasted 35 years!
That she, and other respected leaders in the field, such as Drs. Brazelton and Sparrow, attended the LEAD Conference, (and undoubtedly influenced new teachers), makes this organization worthy of the 2011 award.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Helping families to understand development.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

N/A

Review from Guidestar
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I took my first Gesell workshop in the early 80s. I learned so much and I felt that my own understanding of development was verified by the work of Arnold Gesell. This workshop was a turning point in my career as a teacher and director in preschools that offered half-day classes for 2- to 5- year old children. The knowledge that children move through stages of development led to an understanding of what kind of curricula are appropriate for young children.

I attended the LEAD conference in October, 2010. It was fabulous. If you did not attend, you should welcome the Proceedings that will be available.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my professional life, as well as in my personal life.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None.

Review from Guidestar
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

As an early childhood professional, I understood the great responsibility I had in helping parents determine if their child was truly ready to move on to the next level in their education plan. The criteria at that time, and still remains, is chronological age at the time of entry into a program. It was particularly concerning when the cutoff date for entry where I was employed was December first. While attending a National Association for the Education of Young Children Conference, I went to a presentation by the Gesell Institute of Human Development on, "The Gift of Time. Five Is Not Enough." This was the beginning of a wonderful journey.
The Gesell Institute gave me the tools I needed to assess the uniqueness of each child's development. Using this information, in partnership with the parents, together we could make a decision to provide every opportunity for their child to succeed.
One-size does not fit all. Each age and stage of development is unique.
The trainings and materials provided by the Gesell Institute became the cornerstone for planning the curriculum and addressing the areas of strength and areas needing more reinforcement for the children.
The children were not the only recipients of all we learned from the Gesell Institute. The teachers, the staff, the parents, the school, and ultimately the community benefitted from what I had learned as I began my journey.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

The program described was used from 1983-1989 in a small college preparatory school serving children three years of age through high school. It was helpful in encouraging and educating parents who were anxious to have their children succeed.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

The philosophy was sound and was easily implemented in an alternative to a public school program. We were able to implement developmental placement, assessment of young children and design classrooms for children at each developmental age. Work with public school boards and administration to understand the value of developmental placement. You have been successful at encouraging schools to change the entry date for children. I am glad you are back.

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

As a principal and teacher of private education for over 30 years, I have collaborted with the Gessell Institute of Human Development in many capacities.

This organization has proved to be a blessing not only in my teaching career, but as administrator and counselor working with diagnostic tools to identify, help, restore, and build confidence in hundreds of students who pass through our doors year after year.

The Gesell Institute has helped our staff to understand, identify, and implement protocols that assist in the proper development of every child. This organization has been most constructive in the lives of thousands of students and parents. For that I am most grateful and give the Gesell Institute a five-star rating.

More than any other institution, the Gesell Institute for Human Development is the most deserving one for the $5,000 Grand prize of the GuideStar - KIMBIA Winter 2011 Nonprofit Giveaway.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I 've personally experienced the results of this organization as seen in the lives of developing young children.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes necessary. The Gesell Institute is most helpful in disseminating information, providing the proper diagnostic/testing tools, and for educating the public, educational staff, etc

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 4 stars  

I attended the LEAD conference of the Gesell Institute last October. The speakers were inspirational. They shared information about child development, as well as how to support children in today's high-pressured world. I enjoyed the opportunity to meet others involved in the field of early childhood development. I was specially interested in the focus on advocacy promoted at the conference. Follow-up messages from the Institute with advice as to how to advocate for children have also been helpful. This is a group with a strong history of support for children, their parents and teachers. I hope they continue their important work.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

learning information from speakers and published works, and sharing this info with others.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

give it more visibility in the early education world.

Review from Guidestar

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