What to say

Tomorrow, I am helping facilitate an orientation for new child care providers. This is a workshop that new providers are encouraged to attend before applying for a license to operate a family home daycare (up to 6 children), a group home day care (up to 12) or a center (anything larger than 12.) The orientation includes presentations by a licensing official and a public health nurse, an orientation to the state’s low-income scholarship program for child care, an overview of early childhood development from a developmental screening expert, and “anything else” — including the trainings we provide, behavior guidance, environment and materials and so on–  from yours truly.  

I will probably have about 20 minutes, tops.

What to say?

Caring for children is an incredible responsibility, which ought to be taken deeply, professionally, and  seriously, and accorded a great deal of thought and care. yet people get into childcare for all kinds of reasons– rarely because they see it as their profession or vocation.

Every child deserves great care! Not “good enough” care.  Not care that’s “as good as I had so I’m sure they’re fine.” Not care that passes muster, on a good day.

What to say?

Every child needs to be seen, heard, and loved. LOVED- not in a generic sense (“Oh I LOVE children”) nor in a patronizing way (“Oh my gosh, she’s such a sweetie, I just LOVE her, I could eat her up!”)  Children need to know that the adult caring for them is their advocate, their ally, and their helper.

What to say….

Years ago a wise teacher told me it is far more effective and important to be CURIOUS than patient. Patience runs out, she said. But curiosity, well, you can ALWAYS keep wondering and learning and trying to understand a child better. You will do the child more good by being lovingly curious than by struggling to hold onto your patience.

What to say?

If a baby enters full time child care as a young infant– as many do– by the time she enters kindergarten she will have spent potentially 8000 hours in child care.

8000 hours is more time than a person spends in high school, and infants are developing faster and in more complex and foundational ways from birth to three than at any other time in life.

What to say.

What to say.


What to say….



One thought on “What to say

  1. It’s late in the day on the 9th, and I’m certain you were able to collect your thoughts and share their importance. I’m also certain you’re ready for a bit of quiet. What a little bit of time to talk about something of such import.

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