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

Children Imitate Their Parents At An Early Age

Recently, there were two news web portals about children and their parent’s car.  The first story was about an 8-year-old boy from Ohio (read it here) who wanted a cheeseburger even though he had eaten hours earlier.  His father had already gone to bed, and his mother had fallen asleep on the couch.  So, at 8:00 p.m., this little boy decided to go to get the desired cheeseburger.  He took money from his piggy bank, grabbed his father’s van keys and then buckled his 4-year-old sister into the back seat.

He drove about a mile to his destination.  Witnesses said, he appeared to adhere to all the speed limits and traffic lights.  Then when he reached McDonald’s, he drove right up to the drive through. The workers thought it was a prank and that the parents were really in the backseat.  A family friend had spotted the children and quickly called their grandparents to come get them.  The police arrive as the children were finishing their meal.  The officer asked the boy in amazement, “How did you learn how to drive?”, the boy simply responded, “YouTube”.

Although YouTube may have taught him the mechanics of driving, children learn to imitate their parents at a very early age.  The second news story will give you a glimpse of how young children are when they begin to copy their parents (read it here).  In the story, the mother had just left a grocery store with her 14-month-old son.  He wasn’t sitting in the carriage, so she thought it would be safer to put him in the car.  Even though this child would have had a limited vocabulary, since he was so young; he obviously paid attention while in the car with his parents.  Once his mother put him in the car, he climbed into the driver’s seat, locked the doors and then stood holding the steering wheel as if he were driving.  His hands were even on the steering wheel in the correct position of a clock, at 10 and 2.

In our book, Dear Daycare Parent: The Must Have Guide to Daycare For Working Parents, we warn parents about leaving a child in a running car.

When children are young, they like to role play.  By role playing, they begin to understand and learn about their immediate world.  Daily they will take on different roles, especially being mom and dad!  They dress up in the dramatic play area in what they call their “work clothes” and then they will get busy building a car so they can get to work.  It could be something quick like a box, or lining up a bunch of chairs.  Other times, they will build a more elaborate car out of blocks.  They use a Popsicle stick or a plastic set of keys to start their car; and they stomp their foot on a small block while pretending to push the foot pedal for the gas or the brake, and they use hand motions to pull on an invisible gear shift.

Even while playing outside, the children will pretend to drive, using toy cars, fire trucks, bikes and wagons.  As they ride over the hard-top, they could be heard making beeping sounds for horns, screeching sounds for brakes or just revving up their car by saying, “Vroom, vroom”.  As they play, their main goal is to drive like their parents do daily.

So, it’s quite scary when we see when a parent has left a child in a car, unattended.  All too often, we’ve watched that child take off their seat belt or climb out of their car seat, and move into the driver’s seat and grasp the steering wheel so they could pretend to drive.

Knowing that children want to emulate their parents, we would remind parents often, “Remember, safety first, shut off your car and take all children into the school with you!”

Happy Mother’s Day!

To honor Mother’s Day this year I thought it would be fun to collect some motherly advice and sayings from some of my friends and family. These are great guys! Thanks!

“Eat all your food, there are people starving in the world.”

“Don’t crack your knuckles, you’ll get arthritis.”

“Be kind to everyone because one day you may need someone to be kind to you!”

“Life isn’t fair!”

“Make sure you have clean underwear on in case you’re in an accident!”

“Kiss me goodbye in the morning because you never know what could happen to me during the day!”

“You ALWAYS be nice and polite to people, but if someone hits you, hit ’em back!”

“Wait til YOU have kids, then you’ll see!”

“Don’t jump over the baby, it will stunt it’s growth!”

“You wanna cry? I’ll give you something to cry about!”

“Always break in your new shoes by wearing them in the house several times before you attempt to wear them out all day long!”

“Don’t ever say never. You don’t know what you might do.”

“Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda……Didn’t!”

“Don’t sit so close to the TV , you’re gonna ruin your eyes and need glasses!”.

“Live as if someone else will have to clean out your house!”

“Accept everyone because you never know when you will be the one who needs acceptance.”

“Treat everyone the way you would want to be treated.”

“If someone else jumps off a bridge will you do it too?”

“Don’t cross your eyes, they might stay that way!”

“There are always 3 sides to the story….his, hers, and the truth!”

“You made your bed, now lay in it!”

“Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face!”

“It’s okay to make mistakes as long as you learn from them.”

“Shut the door, what do you think you live in a barn?”

I hope you enjoyed! What wise sayings will you pass on to YOUR children?:>)

Teacher Appreciation Day!

Just a little history: Congress declared March 7, 1980 as National Teacher Day for that year only. The NEA and affiliates continued to observe Teacher Day on the first Tuesday in March until 1985 when the National PTA established Teacher Appreciation week in the first full week of May.

This year the calendar says that Teacher Appreciation Day is May 9th, but many celebrated last week as it was the first full week in May! Whenever it is celebrated, it is a nice idea.

Tip #33 in our book is titled, “A Good Word Will Do” and it has to do with the fact that if you are happy with the care your child is getting then please let the teacher know! A kind word is truly appreciated and can inspire and lift the spirit! This is true ANY day of the year. A teacher also enjoys hearing that your child talked about a project or activity. Or enjoyed a particular song or book. It brings such light to what we do everyday! My day was made last week when a little boy came up to me and said, ” I’m glad you’re here!” Does it get any better than that?

On our website, we are selling Sunshine cards. They are small notes of appreciation that you can give to your child’s teacher to boost their day and say thanks! Check them out!

I will end by saying that I like to compliment parents too! You guys do some pretty great things that should also be recognized. We should ALL try to appreciate the people we encounter day to day.

Parent”s Beware

In January, a father, Ricky Shoff, posted to social media a nanny video of his 2 ½ year-old son rescuing his twin brother when an unsecure dresser fell over on him.  The father said, “At first he was hesitant to post the video, but after a while he felt it was more important to bring awareness to other parents of the dangers of not securing the furniture to the wall.”

Soon after that post, they appeared on other new networks, (CNN, ABC, NBC, and even YouTube to name a few) to show the nanny cam video of their young son being pinned down by the dresser.  It was their hope, that by going onto the different news networks, they could reach more parents and express the importance of bolting down and safely securing their child’s furniture.  After watching that story, it reminded me of a time in my own family.

My 3-year-old nephew was in the kitchen playing with his toy car.  He was zipping it across the floor and crashing into everything.  So, my sister and I moved into the dining area just 2 feet away to chat, while he played.  Most of the kitchen was visible, except a small portion that was just around the corner.  Luckily, he was easily detectable by the crashing sounds he was making.  Then, he got quiet, so my sister and I walked into the kitchen.  We saw that he had opened all four drawers to the cabinet and used them as a stepping ladder.  He had climbed up and was sitting on the countertop eating cookies.  Luckily that cabinet was bolted into the wall, but I know firsthand how those parents felt.  Because even for us, it was scary seeing him up there, so close to the stove.

Jackie and I thought we would let a few months go by, and then repost Kayli and Ricky Shoff’s important message on our blog, so they can reach as many parents as possible with their story.

EZ Home Bottom #1

This is Dynamik Widget Area. You can add content to this area by going to Appearance > Widgets in your WordPress Dashboard and adding new widgets to this area.