The entire staff at EFC wishes you good health and happiness throughout 2019! Thank you for your continued support and allowing us to be a part of your child’s life!
We also want to thank everyone who thought of us this holiday season. The holiday cards, gift cards and presents were very much appreciated. We hope you had a wonderful holiday with your family, as we did!!  

Thank you to those of you who participated in our Pajama Drive! We were able to FILL our donation bin with over 25 pairs of pajamas! What a wonderful example to teach the children about the importance of giving!
Please make sure that your child comes equipped every day with winter outside gear.  Also, please make sure that your child’s things are clearly labeled. Extra clothing in cubbies is a good idea for those accidental mishaps or if getting too wet outside.  
Your new tuition rates are in effect January 1.  Make sure to watch for your 2018 tax statement which will be distributed as well. We will be emailing copies of the year end taxes to your inbox and will also post a note in classroom daily emails when it is being sent out.
If Especially for Children cannot open due to inclement weather or other emergency conditions, the centers closing will be announced on WCCO radio in the morning. If conditions during the day (weather or emergency) make it necessary to close before our regularly scheduled time, we will need to reach each of you at your work places. If at any time you are aware of changes that should be made on your child’s emergency card, please request a new set of cards. This also includes changes with your emergency contacts and authorized to pick up persons.
Especially for Children is committed to be a place where all children, families, and staff members thrive. It has always been our goal to remain inclusive, respectful and developmentally appropriate in our celebration of holidays. In the coming year, we would like to review our approach to holidays and celebrations (year-round, not just in December).

We recognize that holidays/celebrations are only one expression of culture – this survey focuses on holidays, but we are eager to know more about all the things that make your family special, and we invite your ideas for sharing culture, values and family traditions outside of holidays as well

We will be sending out a holiday survey mid-January and would love your participation! 
You may have noticed that our newsletter for EFC teaching staff accidentally hit your Inbox recently—oops! Within the newsletter was an article from Community Playthings entitled, “In Defense of Active Learning”. The article described how physical movement supports learning in all areas of development. Children are better able to understand new vocabulary words that they can act out through movement. They learn scientific and mathematical concepts by using their bodies to balance, jump, add, and subtract. It’s important to note that studies show children learn more effectively as physically active learners because they are able to put these concepts into a meaningful context. 

Another area being studied is the correlation between movement and mental health in young children. With academic learning being pushed into the early elementary years of schooling and less time dedicated to play and physical activity, teachers are seeing more incidents of behavioral disorders. At EFC, we believe that policymakers need to rethink how the daily schedule is affecting young children and ensure that physical activity is still an important component of the learning experience. As a recent article in ChildCareExchange notes, 

“The best results occur when physical activity takes place every day in an outdoor environment, as these have the strongest correlations with positive mental health outcomes.”

For the first time, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued a statement in November regarding children ages 3-5, recommending that they should be “active throughout the day.”

And while adult-directed physical activities are beneficial, “unscripted or solo free-play is also important. When they’re not responding to outward stimuli and instructions from their coaches or friends, kids are better able to tune in to their own imaginations. And according to recent studies , daydreaming is both a marker of intelligence and a conduit to greater creativity.” ( How the Outdoors Makes Your Kids Smarter, Outside Magazine).

It is clear that children require and benefit from physical movement for their growth and development in all areas. As caregivers and parents, we need to consider how we make room within the structure of our lives and environments for extended periods during which children can run, jump, roll, climb, spin, and move. 
Angie Williams
Director of Finance and Marketing

Additional Resources:

Mental Health Benefits of Exercise in Children, Psychiatric Times

In Defense of Active Learning
( http://www.communityplaythings.com/resources/articles/2018/in-defense-of-active-learning ).

Now-1/6  XOXO, An Exhibit About Love and Forgiveness , Children's Museum, Saint Paul
Now-1/6  How the Grinch Stole Christmas , Children's Theatre, Minneapolis
Now-1/7 Gingerbread Wonderland , Houses of Norway, Minneapolis
Now-1/27 Skate the Star at MOA , Mall of America
Now-2/3   Wells Fargo Winter Skate , St. Paul
Now-2/23 Night Trains , Twin City Model Railroad Museum, St. Paul
1/5 Polar Dash , Saint Paul
1/13 Winter Ice Festival , Centennial Lakes, Edina
1/15-2/24 Mr. Popper’s Penguins , Children’s Theatre Company, Mpls
1/18-2/18 The Three Snow Bears , Stages Theatre, Hopkins
1/19-1/27 Winter Fete , Bloomington
1/24-2/3   Winter Carnival , Saint Paul

With the new year upon us, we thought it would be a good time to remind you of the center's contact information so that you can save it in your device.
(651) 452-0043
3370 Coachman Rd. 
Eagan, MN 55121
In addition to Baby/Daily Connect, your child's classroom also has an email address that you can use to reach the teachers. Please inquire with your child's classroom if you do not have that email address. Thank you!
Especially for Children
3370 Coachman Rd. 
Eagan, MN 55121 
(651) 452-0043 

Center Director:
Bri Dieffenbach