January 2021
There is no denying, just about everyone was ready for the New Year! We learned a lot in 2020. So did our families and students. The many obstacles we faced paved the way to new, advantageous components of our program. When we look at the road ahead, we feel more confident and capable, assured in our problem solving skills and ability to work in partnership with our families to reach our goals, no matter what. We are so excited for what 2021 holds for our Board, Staff, Families and Students and are certain that Wild Plum Center will continue our mission of "preparing children for a lifetime of learning and self-sufficiency by providing a comprehensive, individualized approach to early learning and family wellness."
In mid-November WPC implemented a parenting program for our families through Ready4Kindergarten. Ready4K is a texting program that sends three developmentally appropriate texts building on one domain each week to Wild Plum Parents. This platform strongly increases and expedites Wild Plum communications with families and has been a great addition to our technology tool-kit.

When we surveyed our families about the Ready4Kindergarten program we learned from those who answered:

  • 100% of WPC Parents agreed their relationships with their children were stronger after doing Ready4K activities.
  • Each of those parents agreed, they would recommend Ready4K to another parent.
  • Lastly, every survey participant agreed the Ready4K program has helped their child(ren) express and manage their feelings.

It takes time to find something that works well for every family in our program, but we all agreed it is important to stay connected!
Introducing LENAGrow
LENA Grow is an innovative, research-based professional development program for Early Childhood Educators that measures interactive talk (specifically conversational turns between children and adults) throughout the day. The program couples "talk pedometer" technology and weekly coaching sessions to improve the quality and equity of language in the classroom. 

Once a week, on LENA days, students wear little vests that are essentially talk pedometers and record the number of conversational turns during the day. From there, the data is uploaded onto a computer program that produces reports that include things like the average number of conversational turns per hour by class and individual child, the most interactive hours of the day, how many words adults are speaking and how many words children are speaking, and clear speech.

Then, Wild Plum's Infant/Toddler Curriculum Coordinator, schedules coaching sessions with the teachers where they analyze the data and set goals for the following week. These goals can be anything from increasing conversational turns during certain parts of the day, increasing conversational turns with certain children, or practicing a new skill learned during the weekly meetings.  

We want to congratulate Ms. Alice and Ms. Victoria for being the first WPC classroom to complete the full 10 week LENA program.