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March 2017 eNews
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Maryland EXCELS in the Community
Maryland EXCELS is excited about a series of fun, family events in which we will be involved.  In an effort to reach more families and help them understand the importance of quality child care and early education, we are going to be participating in community events, local sports games, and other outreach activities.  Be sure to check back here each month to hear about the newest giveaways, promotions and community events!

During the month of April, Maryland EXCELS will be getting started with partnerships with local minor league baseball teams.  The Hagerstown Suns and the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs both will have a Maryland EXCELS presence at all 70+ home games throughout the season. For more information, be sure to read the eNews and follow our social media! 
March 18: Maryland EXCELS at the B’More Healthy EXPO

Come visit us at the B’More Healthy Expo from 10 am to 5 pm on Saturday, March 18!  We’ll be giving away t-shirts and other fun goodies!  Enter to win a FitBit Blaze, too! This free event will take place at the Baltimore Convention Center.  Mention this article at the table and we’ll have a special prize for you!  For more information about the event, visit http://bmorehealthyexpo.com

Maryland State Child Care Association:      
MSCCA Conference By the Sea 2017


The MSCCA is excited to announce that The Conference By the Sea is being held at an even larger venue, the Clarion Resort Fontainebleau Hotel!  The MSCCA is gearing up for their annual Conference by the Sea in Ocean City, Maryland on May 5-7, 2017. For more information visit the conference website.  

Every year MSCCA hosts an annual conference in Ocean City, Maryland. Since 1992, the conference has brought together Child Care Professionals from across the State to network and to discover new tools, strategies and resources to work with children.  Renew your passion and commitment for child care while connecting with peers, colleagues and friends.  The conference offers a variety of workshops for all levels of early care and education professionals.  You will take home new ideas to implement in your own program as well as create friendships with providers across the state.

March 13: Daylight Savings Time
March 13th marks the start of daylight savings time when we “spring forward” one hour.  By moving our clocks forward, we gain longer days of sunshine.  The adjustment can be challenging for everyone, but especially for babies and young children whose internal clocks don’t change as quickly as those of adults.  Daniel Lewin, Ph.D., from the Children’s National Health System in Washington D.C. states, “The loss of just one hour can really affect a child’s attention span, appetite and overall mood.”

Studies show the best way to adjust little ones to daylight savings time is to start a few days to a week before it begins.  Moving time-based activities such as bedtimes and mealtimes a bit forward each day leading up to March 13th can make a big difference.  Parents and caregivers can work together to meet the needs of individual children so that everyone can adjust quickly and enjoy the late day sunshine. 

March is National Women's History Month.  What can you do to celebrate?  It’s never too early to learn about some amazing women in our history. There are some great books that will help you learn more about some key figures in women’s history. Your local library will have a great collection, but here are just a few to get you started!
 
My name is not Isabella: Just how Big Can a Little Girl Dream? by Jennifer Fosberry
Malala Yousafzai: Warrior with Words by Karen Leggett Abouraya
Jazz Age Josephine by Jonah Winter
Sonia Sotomayor: A Judge Grows in the Bronx by Jonah Winter
 
For more information on National Women’s History Month, visit The National Women’s History Project (link to:  http://www.nwhp.org)

iPad Giveaway Update
 
Last month, we asked programs and providers to share with us how they are using technology to support their programs.  After selecting finalists, voting was opened up to the public (via Facebook). Katelyn’s entry had over 600 votes in just a few days! 

Katelyn Robinson, a first-year Pre-K teacher at Maple Elementary School (Cambridge, Maryland) won the iPad Giveaway.  Her class is looking forward to receiving its iPad this month!  The class plans to use the iPad to facilitate small group interaction and to take photos of the children’s work.
 

TIPS! Developing an inclusion policy to welcome all children into a program

Child care providers play an important role in the lives of young children and their families and promoting inclusion in your program is good for everyone. In an inclusive program, children with and without special health care needs or disabilities have access to and participate in the same routines, play, and learning experiences as all other children. Inclusive practices within a program can provide peer role models, allow for opportunities to practice and teach new skills, create a level of comfort in a more diverse community and demonstrate compassion.

Including your program’s inclusion policies and practices in your handbook, written agreement or contract helps families clearly understand the ways you work to welcome and include all children.
 

READ MORE HERE

Maryland EXCELS Workgroup and Training Schedule
 
Are you interested in attending a Maryland EXCELS approved Core of Knowledge Training? Would you like the opportunity to work directly with a Quality Assurance Specialist on developing, revising, and submitting documentation? Consider attending a Maryland EXCELS Workgroup or Training. 

Access the schedule here.
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