A Holiday Questionnaire How-To

Holiday Post SparklerCelebrating holidays in an early child care setting can be a wonderful and meaningful way to establish community. All cultures honor events, people, and beliefs that hold significance in unique ways. This reality can promote shared interests and it can also pose challenges. Knowing which holidays to celebrate in your setting is important to respecting the diversity, traditions, and values of the families you serve. Having a consistent protocol for how to approach holidays will facilitate how you plan activities and celebrations in your setting and how you communicate with families.

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10 Tips to Help Children Settle into New Routines

Routines-1273289778The start of another year in childcare or preschool can bring about nervousness in young children, even if they are returning to the same setting or continuing care with the same teacher. If your setting does not close for the summer, children’s enrollment may have varied because of family vacations or a parent’s adjusted work schedule. Some children may be unsure about who will be returning to preschool or childcare with them in the fall. This post outlines 10 tips to support new and returning children in settling into a new routine. Use these tips to help everyone feel welcome and ease transitions! Continue reading

The Ins and Outs of Baby Sign Language

Working with infants can involve a lot of guess work! Babies cry, make sounds and facial expressions, and use body movements to express their needs and wants, but still, it’s not always clear how to assist them. Babies typically start talking between 9 and 14 months. Until then their mental vocabularies are forming and are much more advanced than we realize. Though babies cannot speak, they understand quite a bit. While talking to children regularly and narrating their play will support language acquisition, you can help them express their needs, wants, and emotions by introducing baby sign language.

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Little Bookworms: Encouraging Young Readers

Baby ReadingA baby mouthing a book.

Small tears in the pages of a paperback.

A caregiver reading to a child in a rocking chair before nap.

Each snippet described here tells us something about early literacy. Babies first explore texts with their senses, young children learn book handling and how to turn pages through practice, and caregivers read to children at various times of day to promote attention, rest, interest, and imagination. Each snippet also exemplifies one of the many ways children become earnest readers. Continue reading