“Gigi Schweikert has a straightforward way of making us look honestly at ourselves as early childhood professionals. She says it like it is and challenges us to see event the things we hoped no one would notice. The Winning Ways series compels us to examine the profound impact we have on everyone around us–children, certainly, as well as fellow professionals and the children’s parents and families. Everything matters. Everything. But the best thing is that Gigi believes in each of us, that we can change, and we can truly become the early childhood professionals the children need us to be. And that really matters.” –Bonnie Neugebauer, founder and executive editor, Exchange magazine
How Can You Make Welcoming Each Child and Family Easier?
If you know a child is enrolling, before the child arrives
- assign a specific teacher to that family
- introduce the parents to that teacher, other teachers, and all the school staff
- send a “what to expect on the first day” note
- make a label for the child’s coat hook or cubby
- make a welcome sign with the child’s and parent’s first names and post it prominently
When the child begins
- have extra teachers, if possible, so you can spend time helping the child and parents separate and adjust
- speak to or call the parents to tell them how their child is doing
After the child begins
- put a photograph of the child and parents on the cubby and elsewhere in the room
- send a handwritten note asking the parents how things are going and extending an invitation to talk
- make sure the parents are on the mailing or e-mail list to receive information about what’s happening in the school
Partnering with Families is a part of the Winning Ways for Early Childhood Professionals series. Learn more about the full series here on RedleafPress.org.
This is an excerpt from Gigi Schweikert’s Partnering with Families, copyright Redleaf Press.