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Communication is a key component in child care. Parents and child care Providers need to communicate frequently and openly when it comes to the care and development of children.

Communication is an important part of the Wee Watch system. Providers are not only concerned with the physical care of children, but with their emotional well-being. A home setting with a limited number of children allows for more individualized care and attention. The relationship between parents and Providers is more of a partnership; you see each other twice a day giving each of you the opportunity to share any thoughts, concerns or ideas regarding the children.

The partnership between parents and Providers enhances the quality of care the children receive. Parents are encouraged to take an active part in every aspect of their child’s care, by contributing ideas for the programme in the home, helping to monitor the home, and offering guidance to their Provider in all areas of their child’s development, including learning skills, emotional development, discipline, personal hygiene, and more.

Keeping parents informed of all the activities their children take part in each day is extremely important, either verbally, in writing, or by sending artwork home. Don’t just tell parents about their child’s day; ask them for ideas, input, or feedback. Parents will be much more comfortable and satisfied with their child care choice, if they are made to feel they are still an important part of their child’s day.

Wee Watch has a number of tools and resources that help keep the lines of communication open between Providers, parents and their local Wee Watch office.

  • “My Wee Watch Work” portfolio. These booklets are shared between parents, Providers and Home Visitors, which track each child’s milestones.
  • Home visit reports. These reports are filled out by Home Visitors on their monthly visits to the home, the parents and local Wee Watch office each receive a copy.
  • Bulletin Board. Each Provider has a bulletin board where they post information, updates, menu plans etc.
  • Newsletters are sent out regularly to Parents and Providers.
  • Goodwill Calls. Goodwill calls are calls to parents to check in and make sure all is well with their child, Provider and the care they are receiving.

Here is how effective communication can benefit families, children, and child care Providers:

  • Respectfully sharing information and observations regarding children helps build relationships between families and Providers. Parents and Providers are more likely to share information with one another if they feel they are respected, listened to and understood.
  • By sharing information with parents it makes them feel more involved in their child’s day at daycare, when parents are not there themselves.
  • Communication gives Providers the opportunity to have a deeper understanding of the children in their care.
  • When families share information with Providers about things happening within the family, this gives Providers the knowledge they need to support the children in their care.
  • Communication helps both families and Providers to be more mindful of children’s needs on a particular day.
  • A model of communication is demonstrated to children, which may help them in their own social development.

Research indicates that children benefit when those who are most involved with their everyday well-being and learning have warm, meaningful communication. Everyone benefits from effective communication, Providers, parents and most of all the children.