Child Care Now-October 2014

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October 2014

In the News:



SIDS Awareness Month

Spend some time this month learning safe and healthy sleeping habits to prevent Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Find more information on SIDS, as well as resources to build awareness and identify risk factors, here.


Quote of the Month: 


"Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning.  But for children play is serious learning.  Play is really the work of childhood."  

-Fred Rogers



Find out more about GSA Child Care:

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Hoot, Hoot, Hooray!

UDSA Woodsy

Woodsy Owl and Smokey Bear joined us last month for the ribbon cutting at the new USDA Child Care Center in the Forest Service, Yates Building in Washington DC.  The center design takes advantage of the building’s historic bones maintaining many original architectural features.  Tucked in a corner location the center has rooms filled with light from windows on 2 and 3 sides, off street drop off parking and adjacent shaded outdoor play space. Thanks to the many, many, many hands that are required to bring this kind of project to fruition.  Special shout out to our GSA child care staff: Ania Shapiro, Pam Ray and Leo Bonner who spent many happy hours on every detail.   And thanks to our champions Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and GSA Administrator Dan Tangerlini.  The center is managed by CCLC and cares for up to 80 children.

Pictured left to right: Woodsy Owl, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service (FS) Chief Tom Tidwell, USDA Child Development Center Director LaTonya Brown, General Services Administration (GSA) Administrator Dan Tangherlini, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden, Assistant Secretary for Departmental Management Gregory Parham, Deputy Chief of Staff to the Secretary Oscar Gonzales, PBS Commissioner Norm Dong, GSA NCR Regional Administrator Julia Hudson, and PBS Regional Commissioner Darren Blue

USDA ribbon cutting
USDA photo by Lance Cheung

October is Fire Protection Month

FEMA’s U.S. Fire Administration teamed up with Sesame Street on a fire prevention curriculum for preschoolers. Order or download a copy of music, coloring activities and a  poster.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) offers resources for teachers and parents such as games, music videos, poems, escape plan grids and home safety checklists:

Don’t miss out on news from Sparky the Fire Dog! Sign up for Safety Source, NFPA’s public education newsletter today.

sparky fire dog
Sparky graphic reproduced from NFPA's Fire Prevention Week website, ©2014 NFPA

In the Spotlight

Region 7

Young Stars Child Development Center in Dallas, TX hosted “Come Grow with me Garden”.  This open house hosted by the center brought all of the families together to create a beautiful garden area.  This was an opportunity to develop the center’s community and provide a way for the children to explore and enhance their nature curriculum. This garden will teach the children to develop a sense of responsibility by caring for their plants while watching their garden grow.

Young Stars gardening

Board Business

Building a Child Care Board is no easy task!  The Non-profit center at LaSalle University gives these tips for Recruiting new members:

  1. Have a real job description – not just a list of responsibilities.
  2. Maintain a current, strategic profile of what you have and what you need in board members and maintain the board recruitment process all year long.
  3. Share as much information as possible and honestly during the recruitment process.
  4. Conduct real interviews with each candidates; not just tours or social presentations.
  5. Don’t go begging – make it a selective competitive process to be invited to your board so that service is seem as as an honor and a privilege.
  6. Check references or at least make service on one of your committees a prerequisite for board service so you can witness for yourselves how the person works — does he/she follow-through on promises, is she/he accountable, play well with other?
  7. Make it clear to the candidate why you want him or her — what is it in the person that you value and want and need on your board.
  8. Do not hesitate to say no, thank you, if you determine this person isn’t right for your board right now; you should have committees on which that person can serve instead.
  9. Let a candidate know up front what the expected time commitment is, including meetings, work done in between meetings, how much the expected give is, whether volunteering is an expectation, etc.
  10. Don’t make your organization look better – or worse – than it is. Give an accurate picture of the organization, warts and all, what is on the horizon.  In other words, share the strategic plan with the candidates.

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