|Posted by tarastoyland on July 7, 2016 at 8:00 PM||comments (0)|
I let sick kids come to daycare. Fever? Just tell me when you dosed them up with and what you gave them. Rash? No problem. Pink Eye? Hand, Foot, Mouth Disease? Bring them. I do not care. The only thing I exclude for is vomiting and diarrhea. For those I am super strict because a child with those needs extra attention, I don't want to have to clean it up and they spread very quickly so sending a child home can keep others from getting it. (I also spray bleach water on every surface in the house after a case of vomiting/diarrhea)
I know this sick policy isn't for every parent. One time I was interviewing and it was going great until I got to explaining this and the parent stopped the interview, said that was a deal breaker and left. Like in half a minute, she was gone. I get it. Especially as a new parent, you feel like you want a "sterile" enviornment.
I am sure she was reassured by the next place she interviewed that they were strict on their sickness policy. And they may have tried to be, but most daycare sick policies don't make much sense in reality, or aren't followed by the parents. My classic example happened at a daycare center I worked at when I was right out of college. I was in the 4 year old room and after lunch a boy asked me if it was noon. I said it was almost and he pulled out a little purple child's chewable tylenol and said, "Mommy said to chew this at noon." I took the pill from him and got the thermometer - he had a temp over 103 degrees! The parents had done the "dope and drop" as we call it in the business. They have an important meeting and can't stay home so they give Johnny a dose of motrin right before drop off, that gives them about 5 1/2 hours before it wears off, so that gets them to lunch time, if the teacher doesn't notice before the child goes down for nap then the parent gets another 2 hours of work in before they are called. This gets them to at least 2:30 pm, almost a whole work day! Meanwhile that child has been infecting everyone, been miserable and probably been reprimanded for various things that they did since they weren't feeling very good. The parent is called, they keep the kid home one more day and then 2 days later half the class is sick with the same thing.
Another sick policy is excluding for rashes. Before about 2000 the chicken pox vaccine was not in use so that was the most common rash. And you had to keep the child home for up to 2 weeks while the sores healed and scabbed over. The thing is that child was contagious for TEN DAYS BEFORE a single spot showed up. I learned this when my first daycare girl had about 8 spots in her diaper region. She was almost 2 years old as was my daughter. Both of them had their first Chicken Pox shot 5 months earlier, but these sure looked like chicken pox. I told her parents to give her a warm bath and if more popped up then we would know it was chicken pox. Nothing more showed up, so we forgot about it for the most part. Until exactly 10 days later when my daughter woke up from her afternoon nap with the same types of spots. She had spent the morning playing in the pool with the other daycare kids, so they were all very exposed at that point. More spots popped out as the hours passed. She eventually ended up with about 75 spots in all. Since everyone was exposed by both the daycare girl and now my child there was no reason to keep them away. No one else got them. And if they had I would have let them come.
This is when it hit me that my home daycare sick policy would be different than most.
You would think that I would have lots of sick kids all the time but in reality my daycare seems to have less sickness than others. And amazingly usually things don't spread. There was ONE time in the last 16 years that pink eye spread. And that time no one would have excluded the child who was the first case. He looked like he had a bad allergy day, his eyes were puffy and irritated looking but not the whites of them, more of the outside facial part like his eyelids and the bags under his eyes. That night, it was a Friday, his mom was feeding him and his brother dinner and she went to refill his milk cup. When she came back both boys had red, goopy, extreme pink, eyes. It was that fast. By Saturday afternoon all 6 daycare boys had it! Even if I had been strict it wouldn't have mattered.
That is what I have found to be true with most things. Either it doesn't spread or it spreads in a way that it is obvious exclusion would not have mattered.
So, my parents bring sick kids. And the best part is I know about it. I can watch for an extra crabby attitude and know it's illness related so I react in kind. I can keep the sick child away from babies. We know to hand sanitize more often. I know what to watch for in the rest of the group and I can tailor my day to accomidate the health needs of the group. Parents don't need to miss work for a fever. They don't lie to me, there is no need to hide a fever after all. No reason to "dope and drop". No trying to play doctor and say the fever is from "teething" or that the rash is "just mosquito bites" (in January, yep, I heard that when I worked in centers). And if other kids get it? Well, that's ok too, because they can come with it too.
For Diarhea they have to stay home until they are 24 hours diarrhea free AND have had one solid bowel movement. For vomiting they need to be 24 hours vomit free AND hold down TWO (2) meals before they can return. I also do reserve the right to exclude for any thing I am deem they need to stay home for. In the past this has been a child doubled over in pain because of constipation, a child who's breathing was just really off and ragged, and a few other similar things.
|Posted by tarastoyland on June 9, 2015 at 3:45 PM||comments (0)|
*We started today by watching a Kid's Songs video about the circus. While we watched we listed what we saw, heard and what we would have smelled, touched and tasted.
We also learned that unicycle means one wheeled because uni means one. We made our own unicyclists.
Then we popped popcorn and talked about why it popped (it has a tiny drop of water in it and the heat made the water expand then burst). We sand a fun popcorn song that had us jumping and exploding. Lastly, we did an experiment to see if you could add a cup of popcorn to a full cup of milk or water and if bread worked the same way. This was to teach us about how there is space between the molecules of water, that popcorn dissolves in liquid and that when you combine two substances the resulting volume is not the same as both original volumes combined. First we predicted what would happen and despite all the online things saying that the milk wouldn't overflow, it did. Then we tried it in water and we fit the whole cup plus a handful before it started overflowing. Last we did it with milk and bread and that one overflowed much sooner then the popcorn and milk one did. The pictures of this are all below.
*today we were lions jumping through rings of fire, strongmen picking up heavy weights and tightrope walkers high up above the crowd!
*besides reading the cool circus book with pop up pages, we talked about things you find in a circus, we made unicycle riders (and talked about uni means one, cycle is wheel, and then we played a popcorn popping game using pom poms to be the popcorn and the popcorn bucket to be the catching apparatus
*a parachute looks like a circus tent, so we played parachute play activities, we also made acrobats that tumbled down a ramp (reinforcing our ramp skills)
Here are the popcorn science pictures, I didn't take pictures of the popping of the popcorn
|Posted by tarastoyland on June 7, 2015 at 3:15 PM||comments (0)|
We just finished up our Rainforest theme. I had been wanting to do this theme for a super long time but never had a time when it seemed right. I had a really good time with it. I liked how I was able to combine reptiles, bugs, plants, animals, and so much more all in one unit. Those are usually my spring themes separately so it ws neat to combine them.
Here are my daily updates I posted for the parents during the unit:
Today we learned that the rain forest has four layers. We concentrated on the bottom most layer - the underlayer. This is the ground layer, it's dark, there are lots of leaves and it's wet and there are lots of snakes and bugs. We did snake painting then added a caterpillar, butterflies and other bugs. We read a LOT of books about bugs and snakes: That Bug, Hello Bugs, Bugs!, Spiders are Special, The Spider and the Beehive, Spiders Spin ,Insects Number Find, Ten Busy Buzzy Bugs, and Big Bug Little Bug. Plus Snakes Long, Longer, Longest and talked about those terms using plastic, stuffed and wood snakes we have out for play time. We sorted and identified plastic bugs. Whew! Busy day as usual. We will do a different layer of the rainforest each day and create a complete forest by the end of the unit.
*we read a lot more rain forest books and discussed the layers of the rain forest some more, the kids were very excited to make the creatures you find in a rain forest and we added them to our diorama we are making
The kids went to the jungle/rain forest today. They saw snakes, bugs, monkeys, tigers and lots of alligators. They built a campfire also . Oh, this was all in the front yard by the way,
we were playing outside and it started to rain - the kids were thrilled when I pulled out the rain ponchos and let them keep playing - especially because they were a zebra poncho, a tiger poncho and a giraffe poncho! Went perfect with our jungle theme
*today we read Chameleon's Colors then watched videos of real chameleons... one video we found out was a fake one though (the sunglasses one)
We made chameleon's, talked again about the layers of the rainforest, finished our diorama (the kids cut out 4 leaves together and were amazed that cutting ONE time made 4 things, miracles of folding paper, lol),
|Posted by tarastoyland on May 22, 2015 at 2:00 PM||comments (0)|
My Philosophy - Potty training
I fully believe in early training. Since I do home daycare I have trained LOTS of kids, more then the
Duggars, so I have developed some opinions on the matter. I try to start as soon as the child is able to
sit solidly. At first I just have them sit often at set times, like when they wake, before or after we go
outside, after lunch, after nap. The parent can sit them upon waking in the morning, before dinner and
Since I often run into people saying you have to wait till the child is ready I have researched this. I have
found that lots of people ignore signs of readiness that happen between 14 and 18 months old thinking
no child could possibly be ready that young. So the window is missed and the child gets in the habit of
using their diaper and being " lazy". Signs of readiness are not asking to go with words, a non verbal
child can train successfully, but rather indication of a need and desire to sit on the potty. This may
include pulling at diaper area, leading you to the bathroom, taking off diaper, or visibly showing you
they are uncomfortable after voiding.
In potty training you must remember that sleep dryness is different then awake dryness. There is a
chemical that makes your body not pee or poop while you are sleeping. Some children do not get this
chemical in their body until they are as old as 8 years old. So do not push sleeping dryness or expect it.
Use a pull up/diaper until they are dry for a while.
I did some research and found that "stool toileting refusal" has been linked to late training (Taubman
1997). "Of the 19 participating children who trained by 24 months, none refused to poop in the toilet.
Only 4 of the 90 kids who finished training between 24 and 30 months were “refusers.” The vast
majority of refusers (101) came from the remaining 373 kids who finished training after 30 months."
Some children have more solid bowel movements then others that may require avoiding binding foods
(breads, cheeses, bananas, rice, apples in any form) in order to prevent a problem arising.
To read more about studies on this subject see future blog posts!
|Posted by tarastoyland on May 20, 2015 at 2:05 PM||comments (0)|
Early Potty Training Key to Success
John K. Rosemond
What's it going to take for American parents to realize that just as it's far easier to house train a 4-
month-old puppy than a one-year-old dog, it's far easier to toilet train a 20-month-old child than a 3-
Fifty-four years ago, according to a study conducted at the time by Harvard University, nearly 90 percent
of America's children had been successfully trained before they reached their second birthday. Today,
courtesy of several decades of toilet-babble issuing primarily from pediatrician/author T. Berry
Brazelton, parents wrongly think training a child under age two is psychologically harmful, if not
So, they wait. And they wait. And they wait. They're waiting, they tell me, for their children to show
some of Brazelton's "readiness signs," which he snatched out of the thinnest of air to make it appear
that his "child-centered" (a euphemism for upside-down) recommendations were based on solid
As a consequence of this waiting for the Godot of potties, children become ever more accustomed to
and oblivious of letting go in their diapers. When their parents finally make the attempt to entice them
to use the potty, all manner of resistance develops, including a problem that was rare fifty-plus years
ago but is ubiquitous today: refusing to use the toilet for bowel movements.
Several weeks ago, a mother asked me for advice concerning her 4-year-old who was "absolutely
refusing to poop in the potty." The child's resistance had been ongoing for some time and was
associated with late training. Mom was obviously ready to pack it in and run away from home, so I went
into my top-secret phone booth, changed into my Parentman costume, and gave Mom a set of
instructions that have proved helpful to lots of other parents in the same fix:
Stop talking to your son about using the potty. Don't even ask "Do you want to try and poop in the potty
today?" or other equally counterproductive questions.
Get rid of the diapers, pull-ups, and all associated things and resolve to never use them again.
Every day, right after your son eats a high fiber breakfast, gate him in the bathroom, naked from the
waist down, and tell him his doctor said he has to stay there until he poops in the potty.
Don't stay in the bathroom with him. Don't offer incentives, or even encouragements. After putting him
in the bathroom, make yourself scarce. Simply tell your son to call you when he poops or if he needs
Respond "coolly" to success, as if it's no big deal. Say no more than "That's good, you can come out
now." Do not give a reward or even lots of praise.
Gate him in the bathroom every day until he's having regular bowel movements in the potty.
A week later, Mom wrote, "We have success." When she introduced the plan, the little guy cried and
generally acted like he was being traumatized, but Mom stayed the course.
"You will poop in the potty," she told him, and he did; and he has been ever since.
Lesson: The mistake of late training is correctable, and my experience is that, as in this case, the
correction usually takes less than a couple of weeks. But the wear and tear in the meantime!
Copyright 2009, John K. Rosemond
*About the Author: Rosemond has written nine best-selling parenting books and is one of America's
busiest and most popular speakers, known for his sound advice, humor and easy, relaxed, engaging
style. In the past few years, John has appeared on numerous national television programs including
20/20, Good Morning America, The View, Bill Maher's Politically Incorrect, Public Eye, The Today Show,
CNN, and CBS Later Today.
Click here to visit Rosemond's Web site, www.rosemond.com
Toilet Training Success Stories
John K. Rosemond
I've said many, many times that letting a child older than 30 months soil and wet herself several times a
day is an insult to the child's intelligence. Actually, I absolutely know, and historical evidence confirms,
that it is easier to train a child at 20 months than it is to wait much past the child's second birthday. (Ask
yourself: Is it easier to house-train a 6-month-old puppy or a one-year-old dog?) As the age at which
toilet-training begins has increased (by nearly a year in the last 50 years), so have toilet-training
problems. In the mid-1950s, researchers at Harvard determined that nearly 90 percent of 24-month-olds
in the USA had been successfully trained. That so many of today's 3-year-olds are still in diapers and
"pull-ups" can only mean that today's kids aren't half as smart as kids were in my generation (and our
parents never claimed we were gifted!). I am cheered, however, to learn that there are still intelligent
children in the world, as evidenced by the following story:
The mother of a 27-month-old reads a magazine article about "readiness signs" and noting that her son
displays none of them, decides to toilet train him. Yes, you read that right. She correctly ascertained that
the writer of said article was simply engaging in "parenting correctness." Mom promptly announced to
her son that they had no more diapers; therefore, he would have to use a potty from then on. They
went out together and bought a potty and big-boy underwear.
She writes, "I didn't hover, nor did I ask or remind him to use the potty. I was training him, not me. I was
prepared for plenty of accidents, and figured each one would be a lesson in cause and effect. When he
wet, I said something like 'Gosh! That looks uncomfortable. Let's get you changed.' I didn't force him to
clean up by himself, or scold him. I just responded matter-of-factly. He got stickers to put on the potty
and some mild praise each time he was successful, but not a party."
Three days later, the child was accident-free. His mother thought she'd been lucky, but has since had the
same experience with two subsequent children, none of whom have, she admits, "gifted and talented
Her third child, a girl, insisted upon using the potty at 18 months. Mom was a bit skeptical, but had
another accident-free child within three days. Several weeks later, the parents decided to have her use
the big toilet. Since she couldn't get up on her own, Mom or Dad had to help. Eighteen months later, the
child was still demanding assistance, and the parents were still helping. Enough is enough, they decided.
Mom demonstrated how to attach the potty seat to the big toilet and mount it using a stepstool. Mom
then told the child that there would be no more help, even if she became hysterical. Mom also informed
her daughter that if she wet herself she would clean the mess up on her own. The little girl recently told
her teacher, who had offered to help her go potty, "My mommy says I have to do it all by myself, and I
There is no mystery to this success story. First, the mother began training before her kids got so used to
messing themselves that it was no big deal. Second, she conveyed clear expectations and equally clear
instructions. Third, she responded to mistakes with a calm, matter-of-fact attitude. Most importantly,
however, she approached toilet-training with no apprehension, as if it was the most natural thing in the
world -- which, in fact, it is.
Copyright 2008, John K. Rosemond
http://faircompanies.com/blogs/view/whocides-when-to-potty-train-you-baby-or-big-diapers/ was the
following: "One of the moms lured into the training philosophy of "don't force it... when he's ready it
will happen practically overnight" had emailed the group that she's now dealing with a "strong-minded
3-year-old who really seems to enjoy resisting the process". She sent along a link to an article as well as
her advice: "Start now, don't wait, even if he doesn't prefect the process until he's three or more. Set
the groundwork as early as possible."
I clicked on the link as quickly as I could and found the Mommy Files blogger Amy Graff explaining how
she had potty trained her 2-year-old son in 3 days. Using advice from potty training guru and ex-nurse
Julie Fellom, she explained, "Children are typically ready between 15 to 27 months. This is a great age
because toddlers are compliant but ready for some independence. If you wait longer, you'll be dealing
with a temperamental, strong-minded 2-year-old who will likely resist the process."
It was a book recommendation from one of the moms that finally clued me in to the disposable-diaper
industry's role in convincing American parents to wait and wait and wait (in their disposables) until their
kid was good and ready. Linda Sonna, author of "Early Start Potty Training" explains that the "child-
oriented approach" to training began in 1961 when Procter & Gamble started test-marketing the first
disposable diaper. "The company began looking for a pediatrician to promote them", she explains in her
book, "it signed up T. Berry Brazelton, who began extolling the merits of the company's product and
recommending that parents not begin potty training before children are physically, mentally, and
Even child-raising guru Dr. Benjamin Spock fell into line with the Pampers-pitching Brazelton. "Spock
used to say younger was better, 14 months was considered late for training," Sonna discovered while
researching for her book. "In 1961 everything changed and Spock began quoting Brazelton. That was the
year Brazelton signed up with Procter & Gamble. He came out saying it was cruel to train babies too
With the power of P&G advertising budgets behind him, Hazelton's advice began to change the nation's
ideas about when a child was ready for the toilet. For one Pamper's ad, he extolled what has now
become a common concept among mothers: "Don't rush your toddler into toilet training or let anyone
else tell you it's time! It's got to be his choice!"
|Posted by tarastoyland on May 20, 2015 at 9:55 AM||comments (0)|
I love when the weather warms up enough that we can play outside for hours at a time. I have a facebook page that is only for parents of enrolled kids and relatives/friends they want to let read the things I write. This is a great tool for me to share tidbits of our day, tell the parents what we did that day in preschool and share pictures of our day. I was looking back at some of those old postings and thought I would share a few that had to do with outside. If the post contained names I just left the first initial.
May 18 at 11:23am ·
.what a wonderfully relaxing spring day today is!! We spent it outside in back. C and A were finding rolly pollies in the sand box and collecting them. They counted them and were doing adding and subtracting all on their own while they were discussing them. Now C and the boys are eating turkey and muenster cheese sandwiches and comparing different colored tomatoes to see if they taste different. Then off to nap.
we went for a super long walk today
First we had to learn the safe way to stay with Miss Nora, we can run to the next driveway but not into the actual driveway area in case there is a car backing out or pulling in.
Along the way we saw a snake, it seemed to float along the sidewalk. We also saw ducks and a family of geese. We listened and heard the birds. We saw cattails, and at lunch our corndogs looked just like them. We pet two dogs, found a fishing lure and talked abo...ut that, tried to find any turtles or frogs/toads but they must have been hiding in the mud and we picked dandelions.
When we were at the pond we looked at the water, one pond had nothing on top of the water the other pond had lots of green algae. We took some pond water and algae back to the house to look at under the microscope but it was hard to see anything in the water. It was fun seeing our clothes, skin, hair and green beans under the microscope though. We used an eyeclops which projects the magnified image onto the Tv screen.
We read a book about water too.
the kids played in the sand that is now deep enough, they helped me hang the swings... ok, really C cried and cried for me to get the baby swing hung, then everyone else whined till I got the others hung... they helped me build the picnic table (really!). I was afraid I was going to have to throw out one of the little climbers cause the plastic was cracked. Then I realized only ONE panel was cracked and it still worked with that panel taken out, so we reassembled it and tried it out. M loved feeling the wind and trying to eat grass before I got it out of his fingers. It was a wonderfully relaxing and fun outside day. Nap is ending pretty soon, then we will be back out there again.
cutest thing !! - M was playing football with me when S arrived. So M threw it to S, who caught it and threw it back. Then S ran about 20 feet away and held out his arms to catch it. M threw it, S got it and M ran 20 feet away and put out his arms. They did this for about 30 minutes!
LOTS of outside time today!! If it wasn't for so much mud we would have stayed longer, but the little guys kept getting muddy then complaining to ME about it!!
May 10, 2011 ·
water play kinda got carried away - make sure you have extra clothes here - today I had to use my stash of extras, but it was worth it to have so much fun in the hose!!
We played outside till it started raining, then we played inside. We talked about what you wear in the rain. We used markers on raincoat pictures then observed what the rain did to our marks. S loved this so much he did 4 of them! We talked about big/small and numbers/sizes using clothes and used real socks for matching
|Posted by tarastoyland on April 22, 2015 at 9:50 AM||comments (0)|
The kids opened up the water table to find a surprise! The seeds they had played with in the dirt/mud had sprouted. And they were HUGE. The third picture is the seed in a bag on the window which you can see is no where near that big. We discussed what may have made the seeds in the table grow so much more then the ones on the window. We decided that the window is colder and that maybe the lid being on had something to do with making a good environment and that the dirt probably had a lot to do with it. I can't believe how much these seeds grew in such a short time!!
|Posted by tarastoyland on April 21, 2015 at 9:45 AM||comments (0)|
I have a facebook persona (Tara's Toyland) which is only for daycare stuff. I only allow people connected to the children currently enrolled to "friend" Tara's Toyland so it's all people that somehow know the kids. It's really neat to be able to give little antedotes of our day or tell everyone at once what we did for our lesson that day. I post pictures often too. Parents use it to connect with other parents for playdates or just to keep in touch after they leave my daycare.
Today in my newsfeed.there was a picture from a year ago and it said to click to see more from this day in the past. I got a smile from what came up -
April 21, 2014 I posted a photo album - "dying eggs, babies playing, Pilcher Park".
April 21, 2011 "Please send get better wishes to **** - he had to go to the doctor's today because his breathing was so bad - he has an ear infection and bronchialitis. He went home before our egg hunt but did get to do the egg coloring and hunted on his own. His wheezing was so bad, I was very worried!!"
April 21, 2010 "we read Honey Bees book, learned how bees dance and wiggle to talk and then tried it ourselves, we sang Here is the Beehive and we tasted honey"
Sometimes we forget the details. I really want to do a Social Book for the daycare. Social Book is a company that uses your facebook posts and the comments on them and even pictures and compiles them into a photo book. The only problem is I priced out just ONE YEAR and it was WAY too expensive. And a whole year didn't fit in one book either. Yep, I sure do use facebook as a communication with parents tool!
|Posted by tarastoyland on April 13, 2015 at 4:40 PM||comments (0)|
We had started a Pirates theme when I came across this HUGE box. I dragged it home and went to work creating a pirate ship. The kids loved steering the ship, sailing on the high seas and exploring for treasure.
Decorating treasure chests and showing off our pirate hooks
|Posted by tarastoyland on April 7, 2015 at 3:55 PM||comments (0)|
I am on a home daycare bulletin board and someone asked why child care workers insist on saying that the kids are "friends" even if they aren't. Some said that we were forcing them to be friends with kids they didn't want to be friends with. Or that we had no right to say who was or who was not their friend. I thought this was a very interesting perspective and had never even considered NOT calling them friends. My feeling on this is that these are their first friendships. Our job is to teach them to be a friend to everyone and to have them get along with everyone. At this age friendship is very much in the moment anyway and as long as someone is nice then they are a friend.
I'd rather assume that all the kids were friends and feel that every one of us would be better off if we had that assumption. So, here at Tara's Toyland, we are friends!