Network Child Care Services (Network) is proud to deliver to your inbox, the Organization’s April Newsletter! Please enjoy a few moments to review the brief articles and noteworthy celebrations for all families, staff, and affiliated home child care providers. We truly hope you enjoy these quick highlights as we focus on one of Network’s Child Care Services’ affiliated Home Child Care Providers as well as other events of interest for the month of April!

Connecting with Carmen DeMelo, Network’s affiliated Home Child Care Provider

Carmen DeMelo, Network’s affiliated Home Child Care Provider’s residence is located in the Dovercourt-Wallace Emerson Junction which is situated in the central west area of Toronto. Her child care program is geared to offering care to children of all ages from infants to twelve years of age. Carmen has greatly contributed to the growth and development of many children who began care with her as very young children and remained with her throughout their formative years. In fact, Carmen has been caring for children well over the last two decades.

In conversation with Carmen, one immediately notices her incredible commitment to the children in her care as she describes her child care program. Educational toys and other hands-on materials for children’s use are readily available throughout the entire lower level of her residence. Carmen frequently visits the local parks in her area along with the community drop-in centres and libraries. She takes pride in infusing Portuguese flavours into her freshly prepared meals which the children in her program thoroughly enjoy.

Carmen is a model of diversity, equity, and inclusion as she converses with the children in her care in English, Portuguese, and a little French. Thank you, obrigado, and merci, Carmen!

Mark Your Calendars – These Dates Are Noteworthy!

April 2

April 2nd is International Children’s Book Day!

Have you read any good books with your children during the last few evenings? International Children’s Book Day is a thoughtful reminder that children need to be read to as they develop their ability to understand language and particularly printed text. International Children’s Book Day began in 1967, and coincides with the birthday of Hans Christian Andersen, the author who wrote The Little Mermaid, The Ugly Duckling as well as many other familiar fairytales. Why not visit your local Toronto Public Library to access a wide variety of children’s books for free, many of which are printed in a variety of languages! Reading with your child daily will promote a lifelong desire to seek knowledge and understanding through printed materials.

April 8

April 8th is a special Solar Eclipse!

A large portion of North America will have the opportunity to experience a total solar eclipse. Network Child Care Services would like to reassure all families that children’s safety is paramount throughout its programs. Families who are concerned about this celestial event should speak directly to their children’s Centre Supervisor or affiliated Home Child Care Provider for further information.

April 9

April 9th is the Celebration of Eid al Fitr!

Marking the end of Ramadan, this major celebration for people who follow the Muslim faith is observed during the tenth month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Network Child Care Services would like to wish all staff, affiliated home child care providers, and families Eid Mubarak.

April 11

April 11th is National Pet Day!

This special day has been celebrated since 2006, and simply encourages people to appreciate the furry friends which they have in their lives. Pets are an important family member. They are non-judgmental, usually excellent listeners and provide an abundance of joy when they are able to interact with children and adults. Pets offer an opportunity to allow parents to teach their children responsibility for another being, and to consider the needs and feelings of someone else besides themselves.

April 22

April 22nd is Earth Day!

Earth Day began in 1970 and has become a global observance with over 193 countries and 1 billion+ individuals participating in Earth Day related activities. Many educational settings devote the entire week leading up to Earth Day, focusing on waste reduction, recycling materials, and finding solutions to reuse many common household items.

April 22

April 22nd is Passover!

This celebration is marked by people of the Jewish faith also known as Pesach. Network Child Care Services would like to wish all staff, affiliated home child care providers, and families a Happy Passover.

Once In a Lifetime, Daytime Becomes Nighttime

This month will provide a unique experiential opportunity of a completely celestial nature. On April 8th, the City of Toronto will be privy to a virtual (99.56%) total eclipse of the sun. This will occur as the moon will pass between the sun and the Earth which will cause the moon’s shadow to block out much of the sun’s light. This activity will hopefully not be obscured by clouds on this day, as the “night meets day” effect which will occur is seemingly a once in a lifetime event.

As the moon slowly begins to “overlap” the sun at around 2:00 p.m. in Toronto, it will take until approximately 4:30 p.m. for this total eclipse to be completed. It is estimated that the corona, or the part of the sun which could be seen around the outside circumference of the moon, will occur at 3:20 p.m. (called “totality”) which is the reason why school boards across southern Ontario made the decision to move to a professional activity day plan.

Warnings upon warnings have been reinforced to children and adults over the course of the past few decades to NOT stare at the sun. Looking directly at the sun increases the risks of retinopathy. This is not good! The retina is like the computer processor of the eye which sends messages to the main server called the brain. When looking directly at the sun for even less than a minute, the risk of retinal burns is severe, but the damage may not be noticed immediately, as according to Dr. B. Ralph Chou, it has been reported that it takes about 12 hours to realize that something has been barbecued.

Furthermore, it doesn’t matter how many pairs of standard sunglasses are worn if one chooses to ignore the warnings and look directly at the sun, as these glasses do not offer sufficient protection. Thus, children, given their natural curiosity, need to be especially protected, as we all want to ensure that they enjoy many more sunrises and sunsets, safely.