Southgate Medallion Tribute
Welcome to our January Newsletter Volume 47, Issue 1
On behalf of all at the Agency I would like to wish you a very Happy 2023.
PD and Release Time Funding
As we look forward to the year ahead, you will be doing some goal setting for your Individual Training Plan with your consultant. I would like to remind you that many courses are now eligible for grant funding. You have until March 31st 2023 to claim PD Funding and Release Time Grant Funding if you haven’t already done so.
PD Funding is reset annually per fiscal year on April 1st, so if you are wanting to make a request for any recent PD you have attended, please reach out to your consultant. Any requests for funding for courses, webinars and conferences taken in the 2022-2023 fiscal year that are submitted after March 31st will be denied, so don’t leave it too late to connect with your consultant.
For more information please use the link below:
Mandatory Standards Core Training
As you are aware, the Day Home Standards were updated in October 2022, and the Agency is holding a mandatory virtual Core Training on Wednesday 18th January and Thursday 19th January – 6.30 -8.30 pm. Watch this space for a sign-up email – spots are limited each night, so if you have a preferred day, please respond promptly to avoid disappointment.
Remember, this will count as 2 hours of professional development, so you will begin the new year with some of your ITP goal already started.
Winter Play Activity
Nasima was kind enough to share her photographs of the outdoor play experiences she had talked about at a core training. With permission I am sharing them with you.
Thank you Nasima!
Malgorzata Lawicka (sister Margaret) has been with the agency for many years. Over the years she has built many traditions over the holidays for her day home and day home children. One tradition she continues to do is to dress up herself like Santa, come into the day home saying “HO HO HO” and passing out gifts to the children. It is a fun tradition that children get very excited about!
Planning for smooth transitions
Have you noticed that many times Children seem to have a hard time when moving from one activity to another? Or when they are changing from one place to another? These times of change are called Transitions. Everyday transitions can include arriving at a day home, going for a nap, moving from snack to playtime, finishing playtime and cleaning up, cleaning up after a craft, and so many other examples. So, you can say- transitions are those in-between times of what is going on in your day home. It’s important to understand that Children and Adults see the In-between times very differently.
To most adult, we are thinking about our next thing/place/task, that next thing is our motivation and focus. For example, like being outside to play, or naptime, or eating lunch etc. However, children, and this is for children of all ages, see that in-between time as an activity on its own. Therefore, getting dressed to play outside is an activity and then, playing outside is an activity, or reading a book is an activity, and having a nap is another activity and so on.
Therefore, when working and taking care of children- we need to think like children do! When we don’t plan for the transitions, its just like we are not planning for an activity- and we all know how well unplanned activities can go! Take time for ALL the activities in your day home- especially the ones you see as in-between time and the children see as an activity of its own!
Why are transitions important in early childhood?
Transition times are important because they can make the day seem smooth, well-organized, pleasant, and not rushed. Allowing enough time so children make the transition gradually is the best way to avoid stressful situations for both educators and children. Along with knowing how children view transitions differently than adults. It is also important to know that difficulty with transitions can occur for several other reasons-- such as when children are tired, hungry, confused, or not ready to end an activity. Difficulty with transitions is also common when children have communication delays or limited social and emotional skills. By considering children’s needs and abilities and planning accordingly, Educators can avoid many problems at transition times. We would like you, as Educators, to put yourselves in the children’s shoes and look at the world from their vantage point.
Some helpful tools and ideas!
**Use a timer, an instrument or a funny noise to give children advance warning of routine transitions. You can even try o have the child/children with the hardest time with a particular transition help you “alert” everyone else to the upcoming event. For example, let your toddler bang a pot with a wooden spoon to let the other children know it is time for lunch.
**Let the children pick out a special object or toy to transition with to the next activity or place. A nap-bear, that lays with a child at naptime is an example here or a special towel to dry hands after handwashing (the dollar store has some baby towels that have a little stuffed animal attached to a towel-each child has their own cute towel).
**Use a visual schedule to show the children the plan for the day. Take time to go through the schedule with the children every morning and afternoon -- most kids won’t use it on their own- at least not at first. You can even include the transitions on the schedule —so for example one item can be “get dressed to go outside”, the next item “go play outside”, the next item “clean up outside toys” (take your visual board/ schedule outside if you need to)!
**Make transition Fun! Turn that time into a game or an activity, you might be surprised at your own and the kid’s creativity at making a usually boring task way more enjoyable. Children having a hard time at drop-off? Ask parents for inside shoes/slippers and hide them before they arrive- that way the first thing they will do is play “hide- and-seek” for their slippers.
**Sing songs as you transition. Children love to hear songs as they move about their day. Make up silly songs together about what you are doing or what’s coming next. You are sure to get a laugh and likely a smooth transition.
** Give each child a job. Children are more cooperative when they can be part of the process. Perhaps one child can help stir something for lunch, unlock the house door after outside play, or pick out a diaper before a diaper change.
**Use environmental cues to help the children with the next task- for example, dim the lights at the end of lunch to get the kids settled for nap, take out the plates and cups if children are needing extra reminders to clean up for lunch.
Always remember- the more a child can predict (and participate) in the schedule and activities of his/ her day, the less likely it is that challenging behavior will occur and the more likely it is that he/she will engage and even enjoy transitions. Taking the time, and make the effort, to teach a child: what to expect, when it will happen, and what happens before or after the transition, you will find it both rewarding and helpful for both you and the children.
Recipes Winter Vegetable Soup | SOSCuisine
Core Training Dates
The Agency is hosting a virtual webinar to review of the new day home standards: Wednesday 18th January and Thursday 19th January 6.30 – 8.30 pm. Attendance is mandatory and will go towards two hours of professional development training. Join Emma and the consultants for a virtual get together and kick start 2023 with some PD!
Watch this space for sign-up information!