Parent Memo March 2020
Dear Honeydew Families,
The year is zooming by! I hope you are all staying healthy and virus-free! We are extra vigilant in cleaning the environment, the toys and the surfaces at Honeydew. There are steps we take in spraying a cleaning solution, waiting a few minutes then wipe it with cloth, etc. On the whole, the children have actually stayed pretty healthy in the past few months. Cross fingers. Their immune system must be getting stronger and stronger! ( The benefit of being in a daycare/preschool )

As an Executive Director, I regularly take classes and tests to assess the health of our business and the quality of our service. I also stay on top of the curriculum and pedagogical industry trends.
Sometimes these training result in new policies and procedures. My goal for Honeydew for the rest of this year and next school year is to increase parent engagement. We find that children benefit greatly from parents who extend the learning at home, and who sustain the socio-emotional tools we practice in the classroom. The children who have the most behavioral challenges are the ones with inconsistent boundaries and rules at home. We need to be a cohesive team in helping raise these amazing children!

Our upcoming event this week is Parent Engagement Night. It is a perfect opportunity for you to understand what skills we are teaching through different activities in the classroom.  We know that you are all very busy and may feel that you do not have the time, but your child is this age only for a small amount of time . Being able to be in their classroom and feel what they experience can only occur now, in their early childhood years.
When they start going to Elementary School, most programs do not invite parents in the classroom. So please take the time to be with your child’s classroom, enjoy the activities and listen to the words your child is learning. The teachers are preparing and are looking forward to having you in their classrooms. When I look back at the times when I raised my 3 children (Gabriel, 27, Casielle, 24 and Julian 16) I treasure the moments I had with them at their school and on field trips. And it all went by so fast! And these memories endure for me - and my children.

CULTURAL DAY MONTHLY 
We will be changing the way we celebrate cultures. When planning, we want them to be relevant and age-appropriate to the children. For example, we don’t want to celebrate Chinese New Year just because it is Chinese New Year unless a family actually celebrates it. It will be more meaningful to the child and the rest of the class because their friend celebrates it. So at the beginning of every month, starting in March, the teachers will post up a form for you to sign if your culture celebrates something during the month. Write your names, your culture and what you will be bringing and doing to celebrate your culture. 
The activities could be:   
  • prepared food or a simple recipe that we can cook 
  • songs we can sing or listen to
  • your family visits us (you or your child’s grandparent/aunt, etc) and does something with the children - read a book, play an instrument, perform a dance, etc.
  • play a game that you learned when you were young
  • create art that can serve as a decoration for the classroom -

* There are so many wonderful ways to celebrate diversity and culture that are personalized and hands-on for children. And they will learn and remember these activities. As in the Spanish class and language, they are exposed to at Honeydew. And your children will LOVE and remember it.

PARENT-TEACHER CONFERENCES
Each family gets one-on-one time with their child's teacher to discuss what was covered in the General Parent Meeting - as it applies to their child individually. There will be sign-up sheets for these 15-minute meetings up in the next coming weeks so please watch out and sign up. We will follow up with reminder email with dates and times.

FALL TUITION INCREASE
Every year we need to keep up with the standard of living and wage increases for the Honeydew Teachers and so we are reminding you all of the 5% increase in our tuition fees the Fall. This will take effect on the first invoice in Sept. The new school year materials fee will also be in that invoice and that is the annual fee charged at the beginning of the school year.
PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT IS BACK!
Our service is back! We recently stopped doing Parents Night Out! The issue was that not enough families were signing up and so this time we will only offer it to one neighborhood per month and the cost will be less, too. In March, it will be in Park Slope. In April, it will be at the Playhouse on Church Avenue - and the Park Slope families can explore that growing neighborhood - near Honeydew, on Cortelyou and Coney Island Avenue. Please remember that adult private time is important for wellness (and mental health, I can attest to that! My 25-year marriage survived because we were adamant about having time away from childcare every week, no-fail). So please help us, help you by signing up!
If you are someone who would be interested in parents night out, please take our anonymous survey. We want to get your feedback to see how often we should host it for you!
Parenting Chats ~ Round 2!
Thank you to those parents who were able to attend our previous 6 sessions of the parent chat. You guys made Vidya cry with all the positive feedback you provided to her! If you haven't been able to attend, now is your chance! It will be held at Honeydew Nook, 204 15th street Brooklyn, NY 11215 & it will be open to the public, so tell friends/neighbors who might be interested.
PARENT SURVEY
Honeydew would like to hear your feedback through our anonymous survey. Three times a year, we ask parents for feedback about our classroom, environment, administration, etc. Everything submitted will be reviewed at our next staff development in April. It only takes 8-10 minutes and it is anonymous. Every program (and the teachers!) need to know what they are doing right and what you think needs improvement.  
Please fill out the survey by March. 14th
The Honeydew site that receives the most surveys will be getting a special lunch for the whole staff. So please take the time to fill our survey and make your teachers happy!!

As always, thank you for taking the time to read about your child’s program at Honeydew!
Have a great rest of the month!
This Month's Food MENU

  SURVEY / SUGGESTION LINK
Link  
PARENT PORTAL
If you do not have access to Parent Portal,
PUBLIC FACEBOOK
Fabiola Santos-Gaerlan

P.S. Please remember that all parent memos are stored in our parent portal at our website.
Our sister service is having its first free event!
The Family Feelings Fair.
Details are in the flyer.
We are excited to have you join our community.
CHILD IN MIND  is here to guide you through the many Tools and Strategies available to help you understand and nurture your child’s Socio-Emotional Development.
 
It's a free event for Parents, Nannies, or Babysitters!
RSVP link is below
HONEYDEW HIGHLIGHTS:
Our Favorite African Drummer, Mr. Hasan!
Lovable Labels
Strong durable labels for your child's belongings. Click the link below, to find out more information!
Scholastic
Sign-up for Scholastic online account, use Honeydews Code to find books that teachers recommend, the ones we are reading in class, as well as earn books for your Honeydew Classroom!
Code: MKC7R
Honeydew is Green!
We use bio-degradable
  • Hand soap
  • Cleaning Materials
  • Compost food
  • Recycle