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Improving Your Program with Pedagogical Leadership

Despite the shaky economic times we are living in, the early childhood field is finally being taken seriously and it feels like a significant shift is underway. I’m excited about all the opportunities before us, yet a bit uneasy at the same time. The position promoted by some seems to be that implementing more standards and quality rating systems is all that is […]

What’s Your Social Media Personality?

Social media is all the rage. Your board members and front office staff are all atwitter about Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. The parents want an online group to connect with other parents and hear about classroom news. Your staff members want a blog or an email newsletter instead of print to connect with each other and the parents. Expectations are high. What are you doing […]

Transforming for Diversity

As the early childhood field continues to evolve and improve the quality of services available to children and families, there is a growing understanding that the needs of each child must be met in order to achieve the desired outcomes for all children. At the national and state level, early childhood leaders committed to providing high-quality services struggle with integrating the concepts of linguistic […]

Early Signs of Autism: What Directors Need to Know

As a director, teachers probably come to you from time to time with developmental concerns about the children in their classrooms. How you handle these situations is important and can even impact the future of the children. Here is an example of what Caroline, a preschool teacher, shared with her director about one of her students, two and-a-half-year-old Branden.

How’s the Weather in Your Center?

If you’ve visited many other early childhood programs, you know that each has its own distinct personality. Some seem to exude warmth and sunlight from the moment you walk in the door. The director and teachers are spirited and energetic. They radiate a sense of confidence and enthusiasm about their work. When they interact with children, families, and each other, they are warmhearted and supportive. […]

Prevention — The Only Cure for Brain Injury

Children fall all the time; it’s part of the pathway to exploration and learning about the world around them. Yet there are times when you and your staff need to be concerned because a fall can also result in a concussion or a serious head injury. When it comes to serious head injury, the first line of defense is prevention.

More Than Apple Juice and Crackers: Promoting Better Nutrition in Preschool

Across the country, the subject of childhood obesity has become the focus of attention. Earlier this year, President Obama signed an executive order creating a federal childhood obesity task force and first lady Michelle Obama launched the Let’s Move! campaign to inspire young children to get active and eat healthy. At the same time, Jamie Oliver hit the airwaves with his television show Food Revolution, targeting […]

SOS for Your RMP (Risk Management Plan)

Compare your center’s risk management plan to a white water rafting guide. Would your plan be able to navigate you through the uncharted territory of a crisis the same way an experienced guide navigates the water, rocks, and rapids of a river? Looking back as a director of my own center years ago, my center’s risk management plan would have been a novice guide at […]

E-mail and All That Jazz

I love email. I depend on it a lot. I can relay specific details to any number of ‘need to know’ persons at the click of a send icon. I can do it any time of day, without playing endless phone tag or waking someone up on the wrong side of the time zone. I can get ‘newsy’ information out fast and […]

Helping Teachers Identify and Articulate Their Values and Beliefs

Directors often lament how difficult it is to get teachers to implement teaching practices that are child-centered and developmentally appropriate. The reason for the difficulty is that professional development efforts typically focus on increasing teachers’ knowledge base. Clearly knowledge is important; the workshops and college classes that teachers attend and the books and articles they read are essential for expanding their understanding of child development and early […]

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