Celebrating the Importance of Early Childhood

A Child's Early Years Lay the Foundation for All that is to Come
Posted on 04/24/2018
Westside Mini Olympics

Head Start centers celebrated the Week of the Young Child learning and having fun. The annual celebration hosted by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) celebrates the importance of early childhood programs that help further a child’s development. This year’s celebration took place April 16-20, 2018.

 The week-long celebration recognizes that the early years (birth through 8) lay the foundation for children’s success in school and later in life. Center events focused on working, building, and learning together. Throughout the week, preschoolers worked together with their teachers and parents to create art projects, read books, sing and dance, and other hands-on experiences.

Westside Head Start invited parents to join them for their mini Olympics. During the opening ceremony, children parade to display their flag and hat creations. Children, parents and staff participate in various activities such as - bean bag toss, egg race, soccer kicks, and bowling. The activity concluded with a closing ceremony and awarding of medals and participation certificates.

“This is the first year we have the mini Olympics. Our children really enjoyed going from game to game and shouting each other’s names as they took turns,” Westside Center Manager Armida Jurado said. “I am extremely happy, this was a very successful event. We encourage parents to participate in our center activities because it benefits children and families in many ways; involvement builds self-esteem, discipline, aspiration and motivation.”

On Thursday, centers invited dads and male role models to read – Real Men Read – a fatherhood activity that focuses on male involvement. The activity aims to encourage dads to get involved and recognize the important role of being a dad.

 “Fathers are key to the emotional well-being of their children; they are capable caretakers and disciplinarians,” Family Partnership Leadership Program Manager David Herrera said. “Children look up to their dads; there are many ways to nurture healthy relationships with their children and our program is here to show them the how’s.”

 The preschool activities are multidisciplinary and integrate different subject matters into the lessons, including language arts, social studies, math, science, fine arts and physical activity. Aside the academic learning, children are building positive relationships with adults, other children and their parents thus acquiring social and emotional skills that will help them be successful learners.