In response to COVID-19, Easterseals serving Chicagoland and Rockford has adjusted programming and rescheduled events. View details here.
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Spanish Translation - June 14, 2021
Chinese Translation - June 14, 2021
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Getting Your Child Ready to Return to Childcare

Kindergarten for Children With Disabilities

  • Entering kindergarten can be a joyful but also an anxious time, particularly for parents of children with disabilities. These best practices can help make for a smoother transition. 

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Choosy Says Calendar

Summer Soar

  • Summer learning has never been more important. ReadyRosie's Summer Soar has been designed specifically for the needs of Summer 2020 and the transition back to school, whatever form that takes.

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Bringing the Zoo to You

  • This week, learn about insects with the zookeepers. Not only are they all around, but they are usually easy to find. Learning about insects can be interesting and educational. Esta semana, aprenda sobre los insectos. No solo están por todas partes, sino que suelen ser fáciles de encontrar. Aprender sobre insectos puede ser interesante y educativo.

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Playing with Boxes

Counting and Learning About Quantities

Adults Can Model Healthy Reading Interactions

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DIY Father's Day Gifts That He Will Love

  • A homemade Father's Day gift is often more meaningful than a store bought one. There are many activities kids can do at home to make dad a special something.

Fun Things to Do With Dad

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Social Scripted Stories for Children

Reading Corner

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Hatch Early Learning

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Illinois Is 3rd in the Nation for Number of Farmers Markets

Healthy Recipe

Harvest of the Month: Asparagus

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Product Recalls and Hazards

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Office of Head Start June Newsletter

Download the full newletter here!
Have a Healthy, Active, and Safe Summer. With every summer comes an increase in outdoor activity and new daily routines for children. This increased activity also affects their nutritional needs. This issue of the Small Bites quarterly newsletter provides tips Head Start and Early Head Start staff can share with families to promote healthy eating and safe physical activity all summer long.

 

Keep Children Healthy. Support families to make healthy food choices. This means including a variety of fruits and vegetables; lean, nutrient-rich sources of protein, such as fish, nuts and seeds, beans, poultry; and low-fat dairy and whole grains throughout the day.

 

Take a virtual grocery store tour. This video series promotes good nutrition and healthy eating habits. Many videos include tips for families to consider while grocery shopping! Bring along MyPlate’s Grocery Store Bingo to provide a fun and educational shopping experience.

 

Eat healthy meals to be a healthy family. Families who commit to eating meals together are the most successful in creating healthy eating environments for children. Research shows children who sit down for family meals ¾ even just once a day ¾ eat more fruits, vegetables, and dairy products and are less likely to become overweight. While eating, conversations can strengthen family relationships. Start a conversation with, “What was the best part of your day?” or “What fun activities should we do outside this summer?”

 

Stay hydrated. Remind families to provide children with plenty of water to drink throughout the day. Sugar-sweetened beverages and sports drinks should not replace water. Water is not recommended for infants, especially those younger than 6 months old. Infants may be offered more breast milk or formula during the hot summer months.

 

Keep Children Active- Share these tips with families for staying physically active.

 

Stay active. Work with families to come up with fun activities for the summer. They can try swimming, hiking, a family bike ride, a picnic, a trip to the park, or walking at the local zoo. If it’s hot, families can consider water play, indoor activities, and early morning or evening walks. The Office of Head Start’s The Great Outdoors blog is a great resource for more information on the benefits of spending time outside.

 

Stay safe. Share safety tips with families. Stress the importance of using sunscreen and bug spray, wearing a helmet when riding anything with wheels, watching for traffic, and supervising small children at all times, especially during water play. Find more tips and resources in Summer Safety Tips for Early Care and Education Programs.

 

Get into gardening. Growing a garden can be a rewarding experience for children and families. It helps them learn where their food comes from and how it is grown. Gardening can be fun and easy. Ideas include joining a community garden, growing herbs indoors, and growing flowers and plants in pots. Families can also visit their local gardening center for tips and tricks.

 

Gardening to Enhance Early Childhood and Help Children Grow provides resources on gardening for caregivers and teachers.

 

KidsGardening.org offers many great ideas for families to get their children involved in gardening this summer, including the Seed Viewer and Container Gardening for Kids sample activities.

 

Help families access free and low-cost nutritious meals this summer- Access nutritious food services.

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides tailored nutrition assistance and breastfeeding support to new moms, infants, and children for their first five years of life. The WIC Cash Value Voucher allows WIC participants to purchase fruits and vegetables at grocery stores and farmers markets.

 

The Feeding America network of food banks secures and distributes meals through food pantries and meal programs throughout the United States. Contact your local food bank to find food and food assistance programs.

To help those most in need receive healthy, fresh foods, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers boxes of prepacked, mixed fresh produce though the Emergency Food Assistance Program, in addition to the single varieties that are available to order.

 

The Summer Food Service Program reimburses program operators who serve free healthy meals and snacks to children in low-income areas.

 

Because of COVID-19, the USDA has created new options to ensure children can receive summer meals, including an option for families and caregivers to pick up meals and take them home. Check with your state agency to see which options are available and use the Meal Site Finder tool to find meals in your program area.

 

Explore your local farmers market! Farmers markets can be a fun, kid-friendly way to see and buy local, fresh produce. Many markets are affordable and may accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program other nutritional assistance program benefits that allow families access to healthy, fresh foods at a discounted price. Information on local farmers markets is available on the USDA’s National Farmers Market Directory.

 

Stay Informed-Please share this message with others who may be interested in Small Bites! Did someone forward you this newsletter? Stay up to date by subscribing: https://eclkc.ohs.acf.hhs.gov/subscribe

 

Join MyPeers to connect with Head Start and early childhood colleagues around the country on this and other topics. The Building Community Nutrition Partnerships community currently has more than 130 members who are networking, sharing, and learning from one another. Find it under “All Communities” and select the blue “Join” button.

 

We Want to Hear from You. The Small Bites newsletter is produced quarterly by the National Center on Health, Behavioral Health, and Safety. Submit questions or suggestions for future newsletter topics to health@ecetta.info.


Remote Learning Resources for Parents

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Here you'll find everything from YouTube videos on 'How to log into a ZOOM call' and 'What apps to download' along with what to expect from our team during virtual learning. We've compiled these great virtual learning resources just for you during remote learning.


We are planning some great activities for parents/guardians, and would like to hear from you on what kinds of activities you would like us to offer! Please complete this survey. Thank you!!

Planeamos algunas actividades fabulosas para padres y tutores. ¡Nos gustaría escuchar de ustedes para saber que tipo de actividades le gustaría usted que ofrezcamos! Favor de completar la encuesta por seguir el enlace a continuación. ¡Gracias!


How to Enroll in Head Start/Early Head Start

Spaces fill up fast for our programs so secure your spot as soon as you can. All of our Head Start Child Care Learning Centers are taking the safest and healthiest precautions possible during this time of uncertainty. Your family's safety and health is our most important job. Enroll today!

Online Head Start Application


Chicago PrE-Learning

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This online education platform for birth - 5 learners and their families provides everything you need to continue education outside of the classroom and in the home.


Back-to-School Weekly updates and Virtual Learning

Educational resources and weekly updates

Additional learning activities the team put together for our families this summer

Easterseals Early Learning Office

4415 W. Harrison Street, Suite 510  |  Hillside, IL 60162
708.330.4490 Phone

headstart@eastersealschicago.org

earlyheadstart@eastersealschicago.org

Easterseals is funded by two separate grants for Head Start/Early Head Start Services. We are a grantee of the Office of Head Start for services provided in suburban Cook County and a delegate of the Chicago Department of Family and Support Services for services provided in Chicago.

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