Your child’s daycare is an integral part of your daily routine. It is your child’s home away from home while you are at work. Daycare owners and teachers work hard for very little pay or benefits, and most centers that aren’t run by corporate companies have a minimal budget. Therefore, this is the perfect place to spread some kindness.
1. A simple hello- Greet your teacher or teachers in the mornings and afternoons. Ask them how they are or how their day was.
2. Donate some toys- Go through your child’s gently used toys and instead of donating them to Goodwill, take them to your daycare.
3. Donate books- Children can be hard on books, especially younger ones. Go through your kid’s library and see what you don’t read anymore. If you see a good book sale, pick up a few for your child’s classroom or comb used bookstores for gems.
4. Donate Supplies– If you have an overabundance of craft supplies or know a friend who is “crafty” that is cleaning out their stash, donate unwanted craft items to your daycare.
5. Treat the teachers– Bake up some cookies, brownies, or another sweet treat one weekend for the staff at your daycare. They will much appreciate it.
6. Volunteer to help with maintenance– Some centers have a weekend a month where parents can come and volunteer to help with yard work and maintenance.
7. Participate in events– Some centers have special functions for charities and societies that are important to their staff. For example, the center I used to work at did an MS fundraiser every year with a kickball tournament, garage sale, and bake sale. This is a great way to get involved on a more personal level and get to know the awesome people who take care of your children.
8. Volunteer your time and talents– If you have a specific talent that you’re good at, donate your time. Volunteer to create or update the center’s web site. Offer to do some landscaping. Ask if you can come in and entertain the kids with your musical talents.
9. Pay someone’s tuition– If you have the means, pay for a lower income child’s tuition for a week or two.
10. Chaperone on a field trip– There are never enough parents to go on field trips. Take the day off and spend some time with your child and their friends.
11. Thank the cook– Some of the most overlooked people at daycare are the kitchen staff. Take a minute to let the cook and staff know how much you appreciate them feeding your kids every day.
12. Thank the director– Take a minute and thank the director for all they do.
13. Thank the co-director– Take a minute and thank the co-director for everything they do.
14. Treat the teachers to iced coffees– Surprise your child’s teachers with iced coffees one summer morning. Strike up a casual conversation ahead of time, so you know what they like. Iced coffee is perfect because there is no chance of burns.
15. Host a fundraiser– Do you work for a direct sales kid-related company like Usborne Books, Discovery Toys, or LikeWear? Offer to host a fundraiser where part of the proceeds goes towards new playground equipment, toys for all classrooms, or whatever else is needed.
16. Holiday Photos– Are you a photographer? Offer your talents behind the camera and reduced cost packages of pictures for parents.
17. Donate Wipes and Diapers– Having extra diapers and wipes on hand in your child’s classroom is a Godsend. Sometimes parents just forget to bring extra or replace their child’s supply. Ask your teacher what size diapers are used the most in your classroom for girls and boys and then donate two boxes. Extra wipes will also be much appreciated.
18. Donate extra clothes– Your teachers will be jumping for joy if you are able to donate extra clothes. Sometimes kids have accidents and don’t have any extra clothes in their cubby. Sometimes parents forget to bring extra clothes. Either way, having an ample supply of back-up clothing for all seasons is critical.
19. Volunteer at holiday parties– Holiday parties are a hectic time for teachers since they usually take place in the afternoon time. Your child’s teachers will appreciate having some extra pairs of hands to help stack cots and set up for the party.
20. Donate some sunscreen– When the summer months arrive, consider donating a few cans of spray suntan lotion with an SPF of at least 50. This is something that is provided by parents but is run out of reasonably quickly in the summer months due to 16-20 applications at least twice a day.
The staff at your child’s school will be greatly appreciative of any act of kindness above. Take some time today to show some kindness and compassion to these fantastic teachers that are preparing our kids for kindergarten and beyond.