The temperature is rising, and spring is in the air! As we edge slowly out of winter and increasingly spend more time outside our homes, we cannot dismiss the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to hang on. We are more than a year into this pandemic, and our second Spring Break season since the pandemic started is upon us. In 2021, Spring Break feels different than in 2020, when COVID-19 community restrictions first started and fear began to rise. Now, COVID-19 infection rates are going down in many communities and vaccines are becoming available and being distributed, which gives us hope. We seem to be turning the pandemic corner and starting to win the battle against COVID-19. However, we still need to do our best to reduce the risk of increasing the spread.
Get ready to read! March is National Reading Month, and children across America will kick off the month-long celebration starting Tuesday, March 2 - National Read Across America Day. Whether you’re planning one big Read Across America Day celebration or activities throughout the month of March, the celebration is designed to encourage families and children to spend more time reading and make reading a part of everyday moments with children all year long.
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Winter break is right around the corner! 2020’s winter break (like most things) is impacted by COVID-19. The pandemic continues to sweep the nation. As the weather has turned colder and people have retreated indoors, virus transmission rates are soaring to levels not yet seen since the pandemic began. We all must do our part to reduce community transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19. That means that this year’s winter break may look and feel a little different for children and their families.
Without a doubt, families are an essential part of children’s learning and educational journey - starting at birth. “Engaging families as partners early in the educational journey allows parents to establish strong home-school connections that support their children’s achievement long-term “(Start Early, September 25, 2019). So, it is not surprising that “family engagement” is a frequent and important theme of discussions and planning in child care programs.
This season, getting an Influenza(flu) vaccine is essential in protecting the health of children, their families, and child care providers. Flu is a contagious respiratory illness that infects the nose, throat, and lungs. Although there are some exceptions, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends everyone six months or older should get a flu vaccine annually. Flu is most common during the fall and winter. During the COVID-19 pandemic, a flu vaccine is more important than ever.
This fall, as schools make difficult decisions about when and how to reopen during the pandemic, families also face tough choices. Parents across the country are struggling to balance holding down a job or pursuing their own education with attending to their children’s health, education, safety and social connections.