The needs of young children and their families have increased in recent years, and we know now more than ever about the importance of children’s earliest years in shaping their learning and development. This April, we join affiliates across the country in celebrating Week of the Young Child to shine a spotlight on the needs of young children, their families, and the early childhood programs that serve them.
Week of the Young Child (WOYC) is an annual event during the month of April sponsored by the National Association for the Education of Young Children celebrating early learning, young children, their teachers and families. This year WOYC is scheduled for April 2-8.
The week aims to focus public attention on the needs of young children and their families and to recognize early childhood programs and services that meet those needs. It is a time to recognize that children’s opportunities are everyone’s responsibility and to recommit to ensuring that every child experiences the type of early environment – at home, at child care, at school, and in the community – that is safe, secure, promotes early learning, and will set them up for future success.
“Taking part in WOYC in Onslow County is something we look forward to each year at One Place,” said Colleen Leonard, Training and Technical Assistance Supervisor at One Place. “Our main objective during this week is to spend quality time simply celebrating children and those that care for them.”
This year, we’re celebrating WOYC with a variety of planned activities for local children, families, and caregivers. The week kicks off with a virtual screening of the documentary, No Small Matter, highlighting the importance of high-quality early care and education and the impact it has on children and the future of our nation. Family activity events, including car seat safety checks, gross motor activities, and dance parties are scheduled throughout the week at three local parks in collaboration with Onslow County Public Library and Onslow County Parks and Recreation.
Our staff are also partnering with early care and education programs around the county to engage in on-site activities including music and movement, literacy, and more. In addition, on Saturday, April 9, we are hosting a “Caring for the Caregiver” virtual event for early care and education providers with a focus on self-care and information on the 5 Protective Factors.
“Week of the Young Child is important to celebrate because it is a time dedicated to recognizing the importance of the early years in a child’s life,” said Courtney Wandishin, NC Pre-K Coordinator at One Place. “As leaders in the early education community, it is our duty to share our knowledge and inspire the same value of those early years.”
While WOYC is scheduled for just one week each year, at One Place our focus on early care and education is year-round.
“Through the NC Pre-K program and the technical assistance services that we provide to the community we are committed to supporting early educators in creating and sustaining high-quality early learning environments that set the stage for experiences that prepare our youngest learners for success not only in school but in life,” Wandishin said.
The week is guided by themed days: Music Monday, Tasty Tuesday, Work Together Wednesday, Artsy Thursday, and Family Friday.
Local Park Activity Days
April 4, 2022: Hubert Bypass Park 1-3 PM
April 5, 2022: Steed Park 1-3 PM
April 6, 2022: Deppe Park 1-3 PM
Celebrating the Caregiver: April 9, 9 am to 12 pm. Register Here.
No Small Matter virtual screening: Register Here.
For more information on programs and services available through One Place, visit www.oneplaceonslow.org
For additional information on WOYC check out: https://www.naeyc.org/events/woyc