Community.

Kids.

Connections.

Child Care & Parenting
Resources in One Location

We improve children’s lives through parent education, quality child care resources and leadership on children’s issues throughout the community.

We know the first five years of a child’s life are the most important developmentally and set the foundation for a child’s future. Our parenting programs work to create positive, nurturing relationships between the child and the parents and break the chains of negative behaviors and parenting techniques. We focus on developmentally appropriate behaviors and activities so both the child and parents feel prepared not only for kindergarten but for the bright future ahead of them.

The eight programs and two scholarships offered at the Center focus on improving the quality of child care programs in the county, increasing educational opportunities and the skill level of child care providers, and preventing abuse and neglect through intensive parent education, ensuring a healthy start in the child’s life and helping them reach their full potential.

Here are some ways CFRC can help:

  • Training and technical assistance for child care providers
  • Parent Education
  • Educational Library
  • Scholarship Programs

 

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The Creativity Crisis: What we can do as parents to help our child be successful through play and the arts

Before I was a parent, I considered myself to be not as creative as many other friends and family. I struggled with crafts and felt frustrated with the outcome of my artistic projects. I worried that I would pass along this clumsy-with-art-trait to my son, but also felt like well, being artistic and creative isn’t that important is it? Can’t I rely on teachers to help me teach these things? And isn’t my toddler just a little young to really get it? In researching for this article and working our PAT and APP geniuses, the answers I found made it starkly clear that I was wrong. In fact, creativity is essential for our little ones to develop healthy and flexible brains, schools often do not nurture creativity in the most helpful ways, and the ages of zero- three are critical in building our creative muscles. As I started reading, I first had to expand my understanding of what creativity is and how it is important to life. A famous study of creativity led by Torrance defines creativity as making something original that is useful. It requires two types of thinking: divergent (generating many different ideas) and convergent thinking (combining these ideas into the greatest result.) It turns out that children are perfectly designed to be amazingly creative thinkers. Consider that the nursery rhyme, the way we sing to children, the bright colors we surround them with are all designed to stimulate their love of learning through playful engagement. The challenge for parents is not to build creativity per say, but to protect their creativity from the rigidity and overwhelming... read more

How to raise children who make good choices (even when we are not around!)

In a recent Incredible Years group, one parent’s main goal was that her kids learned to make the right decisions while she wasn’t there to monitor them. This goal clearly names one of the main purposes of parenting, namely to teach kids to truly internalize how to make good, healthy choices. As parents, it’s our job to teach our kids not to steal, not to lie, to be kind to others, and to be able to cope with life’s many ups and downs. We want to them to carry our traditions, pass along our wisdom, and teach them to listen to their own hearts. And we take our jobs very seriously. So seriously that we may actually be working against ourselves and not actually helping our children learn how to make good choices. Brandishing our love for them and clutching our fear that they could go down the wrong road, we may forget that we won’t always be there with them making sure they eat enough vegetables or standing up for them if someone is crossing their boundaries. What makes our job as parents challenging is that our kids need to be given the opportunity to learn these skills AND be internally motivated to use them. The recent article entitled What if Everything You knew About Discipline Was Wrong? considers what is really working in schools to change the behavior of challenging children. The article suggests that behavioral techniques, such as punishment and rewards “sacrifice long term goals (student behavior improving for good) for short term gain—momentary peace in the classroom.” Basically, researchers are showing that the more teachers... read more

Helping Kids Prepare for Kindergarten

Do you remember being in Kindergarten? I do. I entered Kindergarten in the fall of 1974 and I can remember exactly what my teacher looked like. She had perfect 1970’s hair, super long, shiny, dark hair, parted down the middle. I adored her. My one memory of an actual day in her class was the day I made her cry. I really wanted to go outside and play with my best friend instead of being in class and I proclaimed out loud, “I hate Kindergarten” and, to my dismay, she burst into tears. Kindergarten readiness is a big deal. It sets the stage. A child’s experience in Kindergarten can shape their view of school in general. So, it begs to reason, if they are struggling right off the bat compared to the other kids around them, it’s going to be hard. Over the summer, our work at the Children & Family Resource Center has been focused on helping preschoolers make their transition into Kindergarten. We’ve been working with some of these babies since before they were born and we stand by their parents, full of pride and joy, because we know they are ready. Being ‘ready’ for Kindergarten is not a test of knowledge, it’s really a measure of a child’s developmental readiness to learn. It means that most of the basics are in place and the child is ready for more complex learning. I’ve heard many of my teacher friends say “We can handle the academic part, that’s our job; if children are just ready to learn.” A teacher’s ability to teach gets hampered by shoes to tie,... read more