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Tool name

Parenting Interactions with Children: Checklist of Observations Linked to Outcomes

Use to evaluate

Quality of parent–child interactions

Age range

10–47 months

Completed by

Home visitors, parent educators, social workers, child development specialists, parenting class leaders, infant mental health clinicians

Time commitment

10-minute observation

Encourage positive parenting interactions

The Parenting Interactions with Children: Checklist of Observations Linked to Outcomes (PICCOLO™) is a checklist of 29 observable developmentally supportive parenting behaviors in four domains (affection, responsiveness, encouragement, and teaching). It is a positive, practical, versatile, culturally sensitive, valid, and reliable tool for practitioners that shows what parents can do to support their children’s development.

PICCOLO helps practitioners observe a wide range of parenting behaviors that help children develop over time—an approach known as developmental parenting. Parenting strengths—what the parent already believes is important to do and is comfortable doing with his or her child—are a valuable resource for increasing the developmental support available to young children.


  • assess positive parenting behaviors that predict good child outcomes
  • guide individualized positive parenting interventions with families
  • track positive parenting outcomes of a parenting support program


What You'll Need


PICCOLO™ Provider Starter Kit


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User's Guide

One package of forms

Additional products and resources

Other languages

A Spanish translation is included in the back of the User’s Guide.

Free downloads

Sample items from Parenting Interactions with Children: Checklist of Observations Linked to Outcomes (PICCOLO)

See examples of how parents may display affection, responsiveness, encouragement, and teaching with their young child and how to score them in these sample items from PICCOLO.

PICCOLO: 29 Things Parents Do That Predict School Readiness

This one-sheet is a list of 29 things parents do with their young children, ages 10-47 months, that predict certain outcomes when children are old enough to start kindergarten

29 Things Parents Do That Predict School Readiness (Spanish)

Share this handout with Spanish-speaking parents to help predict school-readiness. These 29 activities will help with cognitive skills, vocabulary, literacy skills, and social skills.

PICCOLO Technical Report

This technical report provides information on the development and psychometric properties of the observational measure Parenting Interactions with Children: Checklist of Observations Linked to Outcomes (PICCOLO).


Get training from Brookes on Location on Using PICCOLO to Observe Developmental Parenting.

The PICCOLO™ Training DVD

A 64-minute narrated presentation and 14 invaluable DVD clips of parent-child interactions to help users practice observing and scoring.


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Free webinars

How PICCOLO™ Can Help You Work More Effectively with Parents of Young Children

Hear from tool co-developer Lori Roggman in this recording of a 45-minute webinar to discover how the PICCOLO can help you provide positive feedback to parents, develop interventions to help parents build skills, and track the positive outcomes of your parent support program.

View Recording

You might also be interested in

Home Visit Rating Scales (HOVRS)

Programs can use PICCOLO in conjunction with the HOVRS, a direct observation tool to assess the quality of home visits. HOVRS can be found in the appendix of Developmental Parenting, a guide for early childhood practitioners by the developers of PICCOLO.

How can you help parents do more of what they’re already doing right to support their child’s development?