Is there a child who is lost in the shuffle in your child care program?
You have a group of only six children, and there are two staff members to care for this group. It seems like one adult should be able to give lots of attention to three children during the day. But then the day happens…. One of the six children in the group is cutting teeth and crying almost all day long. Another child bites children whenever he gets a chance, and that’s at least once a day. Another sits quietly wherever she is asked to sit. Another can’t stop talking and talking and talking. Another follows you around and sticks to you like glue. And another is just a normal happy kid – most of the day.
Who gets your attention? Well, it’s about prioritizing, isn’t it? Biting always rises to the top. Then there is the crying, crying, crying. The normal happy child gets lots of praise for being good. The glue child gets a hug and a pat on the head. And the day goes on.
Now, in theory, every child should have lots of shared time and also some minutes of individual time throughout the day. A few minutes here and there just for each child. That’s in the perfect world, of course. It might not be in the child care world.
Do you remember me mentioning the child who just sits quietly wherever you ask her to sit? This is the child that is lost in the shuffle. This is the child that never asks for anything, so she sort of spends the day on her own, just following directions. She has been lost in the shuffle.
How would you feel, as a parent, if your child was the one lost in the shuffle? The center staff says “hello, how are you, and goodbye” to her during the day, but there is very little meaningful interaction. She is not causing trouble, or carrying on big conversations. She is just there, and no one thought to help her to bloom.
Unfortunately, the squeaky wheels get the grease, as they say. But every child deserves equal attention from us. Please join our live webinar to discuss how to address finding time to never lose anyone in the shuffle.