Dear Daycare Parent book coverWelcome to Dear Daycare Parent!

“An indispensable manual for parents venturing into the unknown territory of day care.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“This is an invaluable blueprint for navigating the land of drop-offs, snack time, and early childhood socialization.”
Foreword Reviews

“Leaving one’s child in the care of another can be nerve-wracking, but the authors’ upbeat, long-term perspective will assist parents in valuing their providers and doing best by their offspring. For all libraries.”
Library Journal (starred review)

The Dear Daycare Parent Blog

Tell Me a Story Please!

I love November, it means Tellabration! All over the world, storytelling events are being held to promote the oral tradition of storytelling.

Over 20 years ago, my director sent me and a fellow teacher out to Tennessee for the National Storytelling festival, a weekend event. I have to admit, I really did not know what to expect. When we arrived, there were tents spread out over a large area. In each tent there was a stage and rows and rows of chairs. As we walked around, we learned that in each tent a storyteller would tell a different type of story (fables, folktales, historical tales, adult stories, scary stories and not so scary stories known as jump tales, to name a few).

Finally we chose a tent and sat down. Soon after, a bus pulled up and a group of boys around the age of 8 or 9 stepped out. They entered the tent we were in and sat down in front of us. They were chatting excitedly and we were sure we would not be able to hear the storyteller. But we were wrong, as soon as the teller came out and began to speak, the boys immediately quieted and were transfixed by the tells words. As she spoke she created mental pictures of the scene as well as the characters , as if each character stood before us. I found myself watching the boys in amazement. They sat motionless, as if someone was reading rather than telling them a story. The entire audience was captivated by the teller! She used her voice and vocal intonation, as well as hand gestures and body movements to tell the tale. After observing all this, both my fellow teacher and I were hooked. We realized we had just witnessed a valuable teaching tool.

It’s easy to understand why these children were captivated, children first learn by listening to sounds which builds the foundation for language so they can learn new words and vocabulary and finally, read. Storytelling allows children to use their imagination to create the characters and scenes in the mind’s eye. And finally, listening to stories being told builds excitement for books and motivates children to want to read.

Simply go to to find a Tellabration story event in your area.

We hope you will attend one of these events with your child, it will be a rare and wonderful treat!


Ever See a Teal Pumpkin?

Halloween is quickly approaching and it should be a fun time for all children to enjoy! However, 1 out of 13 children deal with food allergies and Halloween only reminds these kids that they can’t indulge in the the sweet treats. Three years ago, FARE (Food Allergy Research and Education) campaigned to educate  people about food allergies. During that time, a Tennessee mom created the Teal Pumpkin Project to allow these children to enjoy trick or treating with friends and family. Through this project, this mom made one simple change: she went to her local party or dollar store and purchased some items for children with allergies. Then, when they came to her house she had a sign that read, “We support kids with food allergies. Non food items found here.” Trick or Treaters were invited to choose a candy treat or prize (glow sticks, bracelets, stickers, spider rings to name a few.)

This project started in 2014 with great success. Last year, there were households in all 50 states participating, as well as in 14 countries. If you would like to join the cause in your area, please check out They have signs you can print off and offer suggestions for non-food treats.

Bravo! What an awesome and thoughtful idea!

Make My Day!

I just wanted to give a shout out to parents who make a difference in the day of a preschool teacher!  Ours is a unique experience as we are caregivers as well as educators and our bonds with you and your little ones are quite personal. So when we receive a thank you or compliment it really means a lot! Let me share some recent feel good experiences with you.

There is the dad who on a daily basis thanks us for providing a great experience for his son! One day he came in with a box of chocolate pretzels with a little note that said, “thank you for making my first week here so great!” Simple and so meaningful. And then the mom who just enrolled her child in the toddler room who said that she was thankful because she sees such a difference in the way he acts with others now. This thank you came along with a yummy plate of homemade chocolate chip cookies! Yeah ok, food and coffee is always a good thing. :>) One day a mom stopped me to say that her child so enjoys hearing me read the book, No David!, so she bought a copy to read to him at home.

Thank you for the little things you say and do to remind us that what we do matters and makes a difference in the lives of you and your children. I think we have one of the most important jobs there is, and believe me, it isn’t always easy.  So on those days we go home and want to eat chocolate, drink wine, and sleep, lol, your kind words and actions help us to get up the next day and start fresh with a smile on our faces!

Starting All Over Again

Yep! You can feel it in the air, we are just a few days away from September. I tend to think of this month as a time of new beginnings! Most schools have just started or are about to begin the new school year! This is also true of many childcare facilities that are transitioning children to their new rooms. Now this can be a time of excitement as they have grown and developed and are ready to move on but it can also be a time of uncertainty for both child and parent. Everyone was in their routine and now it’s going to change a bit. There will be new teachers, different rules, activities, expectations, etc…..

No worries, there are things that can make the transition easier. Hopefully your center has provided you with all the information you need to have ahead of time and maybe you have even attended an open house to meet with the teachers and let your child explore the new environment a bit. If you have ANY questions at ALL, feel free to ASK! I say no concern is silly and you shouldn’t be embarrassed to ask. Another good idea is if possible try to give yourself a little more time for drop off on the first day. This allows you the time to get your child engaged in an activity and maybe have a few words with the teacher. If you are feeling uneasy when you leave you can always call or e-mail later on for a quick update on your child’s day.

Keep in mind that the first week is in general somewhat chaotic and this is perfectly normal! Staff, parents, and children are getting to know one another. There could be children crying, lost or missing items, misinformation…. you just never know. We all need to cut one another a little slack. Rest assured the dust will all settle pretty quickly and you will be right back into routine before you know it! Have an amazing new year everyone!!!!

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