Tag Archives: Children

Play outside.

Several “littles” are clamoring to their cubbies to find their snow gear, I am finishing up the last of the dishes from snack as I hear the busy activity and chatter coming from children who are excited for outside time.  Once I get in the mix to help with the zippers, boots on wrong feet and of course those troublesome mittens, the atmosphere gets even more full of energy!  One by one each child is dressed and sitting, waiting to go out as I finish up my own gear and assure the crying infant that “it’s going to be okay!”  Someday you will be able to move {though still not well} in all those snow clothes!

Once outside, the shrieks of joy fill the air, friendships are strengthened by the teamwork it takes to get a little wet sand shoveled around the playset.  Others try as hard as they can to still swing in their puffy pants and I see little lungs breathing in so much WONDERFUL fresh, fresh air.  

Why would you do all this work for such a short time outside?  Some would ask…Indeed, it is a ton of work, and quite exhausting.  As I am out I grimace thinking of all the dry grass, wet sand and muck that will be all over my floor.  It is a pain, but a very good kind of pain because in the end…it’s totally worth it.

I need the fresh air just as badly {maybe more!} than these littles do!  It refreshes the soul, it does wonders for cabin fever and gives us all a chance to reconnect and regroup.

If you are a daycare provider, please consider going through the tough work of “getting outside” this winter.  Don’t let weather be the excuse…make those parents bring in the gear and always have extra stuff on hand for those who need it!  Get in the habit, you won’t regret it and best of all the children will benefit and that is what we are all about…right?

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Here are some tips to help you get outside more often:

-Get organized!  Have drawers, hooks and bins to house winter stuff.  Set up boot trays and designate places to throw or hang wet stuff.  I have a handy hanger clip that really helps with wet mittens and hats.

-Think positively.  If you have a good attitude about being out, even if you have to fake it you will in turn help the little ones to have a better experience.

-Start them young.  I always have taken babies out.  Even if you need to wait for that bottle or that nap, make it happen when you are able to!  They will cry at times, or sometimes the whole time, but stick it out!  They will learn to love it and will still benefit.

-Be organized while outside.  Have a plan before you go out as to what part of the yard you will be playing in and know where your equipment is (sleds, strollers etc).

 

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Bad news.

I so rarely turn on the news these days, but happened to catch a snippet while browsing our dvr recently only to hear about a home daycare provider that abused a young child in her care.

Many emotions flooded into my being- anger, sadness, disbelief and frustration.

The media eats these stories up. Almost as if to say that if this woman had been more educated or joined a union, or had more state-mandated rules put in place in her childcare this wouldn’t have happened. Unfortunately, people do bad things and hurt innocent people in this world.

I hate that someone given the {huge} responsibility of caring for young children could do these things, and I also hate that the media highlights THESE stories again and again.

I know for myself personally, and so many of my provider friends out there-we are in this field for a reason. We love what we do. Yes, it is difficult and can be trying, but this is a profession for us and we take it seriously. It would be so awesome if we could see the media do a story on the nightly news that actually shows what those of us working our tails off to love, educate, and care for kids are doing. To hear testimony of the difference we are making every single day.

I am so thankful for the resources I have out there to help me grow and learn more about my field. I have a wonderful network of provider friends who I can call, email or meet with when I need encouragement or have questions. This is such a huge part of what being a home daycare provider is all about. We do not need to feel alone or isolated, and we need to know how to manage our stress. Take a class, workout in the mornings or evenings…get good sleep! If something isn’t working well in our programs, we can change it so it works better.

So the next time you see a news report on an awful home provider….please remember that there are so many wonderful and amazing providers still out there doing their best to give the kids in their care a meaningful and quality experience.