“For me, it’s about Head Start’s mission. United Children and Family Head Start works with the children and their families. I was a first-grade teacher in the public school system, and it occurred to me that if we worked with the children and their families, we would have greater results when they got to first grade. A lot of the habits children had formed and a lot of understandings about education that parents had were set by the time they got to school. I respect parents as the first teachers; reading and vocabulary and the way we develop that is more of a family issue.
This will be my seventh year with Head Start. I like the staff at UCFHS; I feel I have administrative support, and the administration is organized. When I first joined this team, there was not one person who didn’t try to help me. Head Start is a wonderful place where parents and teachers can train. Training is ongoing both for the staff and parents. Many of our parents actually become a part of our program.
Lessons are hands-on, it’s fun and you get a chance to see the children grow. Our goal is to make sure that we are giving our children the best start. It’s amazing, year after year, we have families that come back to visit and report how well their children are doing in school.
The “aha” moments that the children have are the most rewarding, when they get something or try something new. Just the other day, we made green eggs and ham. To see them after we read that book try those green eggs, it was really funny. They don’t have reservations about learning and trying new things like adults often do. They jump right in—they even requested more!”