Assistant Director 10/16/15

Hello Everyone,

Jen V has been on vacation this week so she has left me in charge of the blog! It has been a quiet week here at Parkside. The weather has been beautiful and the children are enjoying lots of fall activities inside and outside.

Our family pumpkin patch is looking adorable! We have some very creative children and parents. There is still time to decorate a pumpkin and drop it off at the pumpkin patch.

Jen MR and I were talking about all the fun fall things we did with our kids when they were little (we miss those days). We decided to write them in the blog to relive our past autumns and maybe give some ideas to first time parents! Some of our favorites include: stuffing old clothes with leaves to make scarecrows, making apple crisp (an easy way to do this with kids is to core an apple and fill it with butter, brown sugar and cinnamon). Older kids can cut up apples and help with baking of traditional apple crisp.

Of course carving pumpkins and cooking the seeds was always a highlight of the fall season. Making ghosts out of paper napkins is a fun Halloween decoration. You can ball up napkins and wrap another napkin around with a string, or use a round lollipop; use a black marker to make a “ghost face.” Leaf rubbing is also a fun craft activity. But of course the most fun my children and I had was raking big piles of leaves to jump in! We hope you have a chance to do some fun fall activities with your kids!

We’ve had a lot of questions about potty training recently. As you probably know, Parkside takes a developmental approach to toilet training; this means we believe that each child is unique and will learn to use the toilet in his/her own time. However, parents and teachers have an important facilitation role in that process. As yourself if your child would have ever learned to use a fork if you didn’t show him how to use it! The approach when children are in child care is that we work together as a team to help the child learn how to potty appropriately. That requires knowing when your child might be ready (as opposed to an artificial date, such as the day she turns 3) both physically and emotionally—typically, between 24-36 months and interested in the process, communication with your child’s teachers (let us know what your plan is), preparing your schedule at home (you might need to stay home an entire long weekend or longer without errands, etc. while you bring your child to the bathroom frequently), a decision on “underwear vs. pull ups” or a combination of both, and communication with your child.

There are oodles of books written on this topic in addition to DVDs and Youtube videos that might be helpful. When your child is pretty secure in his/her potty routine s/he may still have accidents throughout the years leading up to Kindergarten. Teachers can be very helpful in this process but typically have 12-20 children to keep track of and may not be able to remind your child as often as a parent working 1/1 at home is able to do. Therefore, try to get the routines down pat at home and we’ll help as much as possible. Here are some resources to try:


First Look and Find: Elmo’s Potty Book

Dora’s Potty Book by Melissa Torres

Berenstain Bears My Potty and I by Stan and Jan Berenstain

Flush the Potty by Ken Wilson-Max

Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi

Where’s the Poop? By Julie Markes

For Parents:

The Magic Bowl Parent’s guide: Potty Training Made Easy by Baruch Kushnir

Toilet Training in less Than a Day by Nathan Azrin

Superbaby: 12 Ways to Give Your Child a Head Start in the First 3 Years by Dr. Jenn Berman


Potty Power-For Boys and Girls

Go Potty Go! Training for Tiny Toddlers

Elmo’s Potty Time (Sesame Street)


“Get Your Child Potty Trained Fast” on

Toilet Training and potty training guide on

YOUTUBE: The Potty Training DVD—Fast and Easy!

When in doubt, talk to your child’s teacher and we’ll help! Have a great week—Lisa Janicki

Upcoming Events:

Thursday, October 22nd: : Parent/teacher Advisory Meeting @ 5:45

October 30th: Parkside celebrates Halloween!! We’ll have many activities planned in our classrooms as

well as a costume parade! Make sure to arrive at Parkside Friday morning with your child dressed in

their costume; as soon as the parade is finished we will change your child and put their costume away.

We ask all of our parents to make sure your child does not wear a Mask at Parkside. Costumes should be worn right over children’s clothes if possible.