Stay connected to your child at Sparkles!
We know it can be difficult to not be with your child during the workday. And as educators, we also recognize that parental involvement plays an essential role in your child’s success. This is why we offer a number of ways for you to stay connected to your child while they are learning, playing and growing at Sparkles! Our parents are able to keep up with the daily schedule, (virtually) peek in on their children and track developmental milestones from anywhere. There are also regular invites to join us for classroom fun, and educators who love to talk to you about your child’s progress.
“We welcome parent participation. We encourage it,” explained Garlene Lansdown, assistant director at our Crystal City location. “We want a parent partnership, making sure that parents and children feel comfortable with Sparkles! as a second home.”
Here is some of what we offer to make sure that parents never have to miss a minute of their child’s time at Sparkles!:
Open-Door Policy Parents are always welcome to visit their child’s classroom. “For instance, parents can come in on lunch break and see their children. They really like it,” noted Katie Vanderhoof of Sparkles! at Fair Oaks.
Brightwheel This handy app plugs you into “your child’s day, in real-time,” enabling parents to:
- Directly message with teachers
- Securely receive photos of their children
- Check-in children electronically (and receive check-in confirmation)
- Get daily progress reports for their child
“The brightwheel app is a great tool for us to communicate with the families at all times,” said teacher Amanda Davis of Sparkles! at Crystal City. “With this this app, we communicate frequently with the parents every day via pictures, messages, daily reports, notes and more.”
Secure Streaming Video Feed Watch your child flourish! Peek in throughout the day for added peace of mind, using a secure login to access real-time video of your child’s classroom.
“Parents love it,” said Katie. “They watch it and call and ask questions, like ‘What was that activity?’ They can feel confident knowing what is happening each minute.”
Parents say that this is also a great way to spur dinnertime conversation. Instead of a vague, “How was your day?” parents can engage children with questions like, “What was your favorite part of building the volcano today?”, and build upon lessons taught at Sparkles!
Events for Parents We hold regular events that invite parents into Sparkles!, such as costume parades, Donuts with Daddy for Father’s Day, student art shows, open houses and more. Parents are also encouraged to ask about volunteer opportunities, such as reading to the children.
“Events encourage direct communication and classroom awareness. The holiday celebrations in particular are always loved by children and parents alike,” said Katie.
Parent/Teacher Conferences Twice a year, parents are invited to meet one-on-one with teachers to review the student’s portfolio, and to discuss developmental milestones, social interactions, expectations and any concerns.
But, you don’t have to wait! Parents are welcome to schedule a conference whenever they have questions, or want to check in on their child’s progress. To request an appointment with the center director or classroom teacher, just call the center or stop by the front desk. Additionally, we encourage parents to regularly look at their child’s portfolio, which has progress reports, projects and schoolwork.
Fostering the connection between home and school provides children with a sense of security and continuity, and offers parents a collaborative approach to their child’s education. This connectivity is one of the many ways that Sparkles! goes beyond daycare to be a partner in the early education experience of your child.