FCIC - Florida Center for Inclusive Communities

About Us

Twice a month, home visitors who are parents themselves, and reside in the targeted community, visit HIPPY parents in their home to role play the activity packets. Every other week, parents attend group meetings with other parents, HIPPY staff, consultants, and volunteers.

Every other week home visitors, who are also participants in the program, make home visits to role play HIPPY activities with parents. On alternating weeks, group meetings are held. During group meetings, home visitors and parents role play the week's activities and an enrichment activity is offered, including issues of parenting and family life and often addressing parents' interests in improving their own situation through further education and training. Parents spend approximately 15-20 minutes a day, five days a week, completing HIPPY activities with their children.


For the parents in the program, many of whom have limited formal education and are hard-pressed by circumstances, HIPPY provides:

Some HIPPY parents actually become employed by the program as home visitors (parent educators). They visit homes, role play lessons, provide encouragement to parents, and receive training and support through weekly staff meetings with their local coordinator. These positions may be part-time or full-time.


The HIPPY curriculum is cognitively based, focusing on language development, problem solving, and perceptual discrimination skills. There are 30 easy-to-use activity packets for each age of the program. Activities take as little as 15 minutes a day for the parent and child to complete. Learning and playing are mingled throughout HIPPY's structured curriculum as parents encourage their children to recognize shapes and colors, tell stories, follow directions, solve logical problems, and acquire other school readiness skills. Apart from building on the basic bond between parents and children, parents learn how to prepare their children for success in school and beyond.

HIPPY activities are written in a structured format comparable to a well-designed lesson plan for a novice teacher. The purpose of the structure is to assure that activities will be easy and fun for parents to implement and to create a successful learning experience between the parent and child. The curriculum is primarily cognitively-based, focusing on language development, problem solving and discrimination skills. Learning and play mingle throughout HIPPY activities, as parents help children build school readiness skills. HIPPY utilizes role playing as the method of instruction when training home visitors and parents. Role playing promotes a comfortable learning environment in which there is always room for mistakes. In addition to maximizing parent's understanding and facility in doing the activities, it promotes parental empathy for the developmental capabilities of young children.

HIPPY USA has also developed enrichment materials to enhance the curriculum and provide additional learning opportunities for children. The Creative Games are targeted for the Age 5 child who is ready for the next level of learning and focus on developing open-ended questioning, problem solving and creative thinking. These activities were selected to broaden the child's experience base for successful learning in kindergarten, and to increase the parent and child's enthusiasm for learning during their last year of HIPPY These materials are available for purchase by our programs. Other enrichment materials aimed at broadening the parent and child's learning experiences are supplemented on a regular basis and made available to our programs. Some of these include: a nutrition program entitled, Exploring Healthy Eating: Activities for Parents and Children Together, developed with the Center on Hunger, Poverty and Nutrition Policy at Tufts University; enrichment activities entitled, The HIPPY Curriculum Enrichment Guides for Ages Three, Four and Five. Additional materials are developed at HIPPY USA and/or as collaborations with other organizations and made available to our parents and children through the programs.



HIPPY partners with parents to prepare their children for success in school. HIPPY USA supports the development and operation of programs in communities across the United States through ongoing program development and technical assistance informed by research and public policy.

HIPPY helps parents empower themselves as their children’s first teacher by giving them the tools, skills and confidence they need to work with their children in the home. The program was designed to bring families, organizations and communities together and remove any barriers to participation that may include limited financial resources or lack of education.







In a meeting of representatives of HIPPY programs around the world, the goals of HIPPY were defined as follows:
HIPPY is dedicated to:


The Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) is a developmentally appropriate, early childhood program that helps parents teach their three, four, and five-year-old children at home.

HIPPY is an international program that started in Israel in 1969 as a research and demonstration project. It has since spread to other countries. Germany, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, and Canada along with Israel and the United States now comprise HIPPY International. The HIPPY program came to the United States in 1984.

HIPPY USA, located in Little Rock, AR, was established as an independent non-profit organization in 1988 to promote and guide the development of the HIPPY program in the United States.  HIPPY USA is the national office for the network of state coordinating offices and local HIPPY programs in the United States, with the primary responsibilities of providing training and technical assistance; developing and improving the HIPPY materials and model; conducting outreach and advocacy; collecting national data; and overseeing research.


There were fourteen (14) HIPPY programs in Florida operating in twenty-two (22) sites serving approximately 2,062 children in 24 counties.

There were eleven (11) HIPPY programs in Florida operating in eleven (11) sites serving approximately 1,200 children in 12 counties.
Nationally, there were 140 program sites in 23 states and DC serving approximately 14,800 children.

There were eleven (11) HIPPY programs in Florida operating in thirteen (13) sites serving approximately 1,563 children in 12 counties.
Nationally, there were 146 program sites in 20 states and DC serving over 14,500 children.

There were twelve (12) HIPPY programs in Florida operating in seventeen (17) sites serving approximately 1,900 children in 12 counties. Nationally, there were 148 program sites in 23 states and DC serving over 14,500 children.

There were twelve (12) HIPPY programs in Florida operating in seventeen (17) sites serving more than 2,200 children in 13 counties.
Nationally, there were 141 program sites in 23 states and DC serving approximately 15,000 children.

There were fifteen (15) HIPPY programs in Florida serving more than 2,500 children in 17 counties.
Nationally, there were 144 program sites in 23 states and DC serving over 16,000 children.

HIPPY USA moved its headquarters from New York, NY to Little Rock, AR.

HIPPY USA changed its logo and look.

There were fifteen (15) HIPPY programs in 15 counties serving more than 1,500 children in Florida.
Nationally, there were 137 HIPPY programs with 172 HIPPY sites in 26 states serving over 16,000 children.

HIPPY changes its name from Home Instruction Program for Preschool Youngsters to Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters. The change more accurately portrays the program's emphasis to teach parents of preschool youngsters the skills they need to serve as their child's first teacher.

The Florida State Legislature appropriated funds to fully support the Florida HIPPY T&TA Center as well as open six (6) new HIPPY programs and expand three (3) existing programs.

There were 9 programs operating in various sites in Florida, serving more than 800 families of diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds.

The Florida State HIPPY Advisory Committee was established in Tampa, Florida.
The Florida HIPPY Training and Technical Assistance (T&TA) Center was established with funds from a Federal Title IV Parent Involvement Project (PIP) grant at the Hillsborough County Center of Excellence and the Center was housed at the University of South Florida.

HIPPY USA became an independent, non-profit, educational organization.

HIPPY USA was established at NCJW to provide training and technical assistance to all HIPPY programs.

The first Florida HIPPY program began in Miami.

HIPPY programs were established in the United States.

HIPPY was developed in Israel, at the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) Research Institute for Innovation in Education at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.


HIPPY is not a mail-order kit. It is a structured home-community model focused on parent-child centered learning. It may be operated through existing agencies and organizations that have the space, fiscal, and personnel support to administer the program.

Establishing a HIPPY program means:

Staffing Requirements

Each program has one full-time, professional coordinator who is responsible for all aspects of program implementation and management. This includes recruitment, training and supervision of home visitors, administrative tasks, working with the advisory committee and fund raising. Coordinators have backgrounds in early childhood education, elementary education, adult education, social work and community development. Home visitors, who are members of the participating communities and themselves parents in the program, conduct the home visits. They work either part-time with a caseload of 10- 15 children or full-time with a caseload of 25 children. Becoming a home visitor is often a first job and a first step out of dependency.


HIPPY is one discrete component of a comprehensive approach to supporting families. As such HIPPY is operated within the context of larger organizations that offer an array of services for families. Successful HIPPY settings include schools, public housing, family support centers and community-based agencies.


Costs are approximately $1500-$2000 per child, per year over two years. This is based on an average program size of 60 children in the first year and 120 children in the second year, a full-time coordinator and one home visitor for 12 children. Costs include staff salaries (the largest and most variable component); curriculum materials; fees for training and technical assistance, program development, and license and affiliation; and other direct costs.
The average program costs to the implementing agency or organization are approximately $1,837 per child per year. This range is based on an average program size of 60 families in the first year and 120 families in the second year, a full-time coordinator, and one paraprofessional for each group of 12 families. Costs include staff salaries, curriculum materials, fees for training and technical assistance, program development and other direct costs.

Programs Funding

While funding is frequently the greatest obstacle to starting and maintaining a HIPPY program, programs around the country have been successful in securing support from public and private sources at local, state and national levels. Funding has been provided through early childhood education initiatives including Title I (Chapter 1), Even Start, Head Start, job training programs (particularly JTPA), public housing initiatives, a myriad of prevention and early intervention programs (such as child abuse prevention, teen pregnancy prevention, and crime prevention) and foundations, businesses and civic organizations.

Getting Started

The development of a HIPPY program combines strong grassroots community collaboration, securing funding and ongoing dialogue with HIPPY USA. The HIPPY USA Start-Up Manual provides a step-by-step guide to beginning a program. It includes information on conducting a community needs assessment, developing and convening an advisory group, submitting an application, preparing a budget and hiring staff. HIPPY USA's Guide to Fund Raising describes potential funding sources and provides "cut and paste" proposal elements. A variety of outreach and public relations materials are also available.

For More Information

If you would like additional information, please call HIPPY USA at (501) 537-7732, or write to 1221 Bishop St., Little Rock, AR., 72202, or e-mail at info@hippyusa.org . You can also visit HIPPY USA on the internet at www.hippyusa.org to get more information about starting a program.


Search HIPPY

HIPPY Brochure

HIPPY Brochure, cover
email icon


Donate to HIPPY

Donate Icon