Watch, Wait and Wonder DownUnder



The infant/child-led dyadic intervention as manualised and researched was piloted in Dunedin, New Zealand [1986-8]. The origins of infant/toddler centred activity began with the work of Mahrer, Levinson and Fine [1976, 1980]. Johnson, Dowling, and Wesner working in a community setting  followed the child-led procedure outlined by Mahrer et. al.  and began a pilot project in 1977. With community representatives and  interested mothers they decided – that the new techniques could be successfully represented to the community in the slogan: “Watch, Wait, and Wonder” [Wesner, Dowling and Johnson, 1982].

Elisabeth Muir, Angela Stupples and Denise Guy described the use of this method combined with a psychotherapeutic discussion of the mother’s observations of the infant’s play [Guy 1988, Muir 1992]; subsequently developed as the Watch, Wait and Wonder Intervention.