Child care staff meetings are crucial to the success of the establishment because they focus on ways the staff needs to progress and develop, as well as how the children are responding to programs. Keep the staff focused on important topics throughout the course of the meeting to ensure efficiency.
Allow the staff to express feelings in a creative manner. For example, each person could write down one problem she has with work on a slip of paper. She can exchange slips of paper with others, and everyone can work to help relieve the issues. Another option is to put a suitcase on the floor and have the workers write down outside issues that affect their work. They should put these pieces of paper into the suitcase as a symbol of leaving these issues out of the work environment.
Hands-On Learning Experiences
Child care is a field in which people have interpersonal interactions all day. Therefore, the meetings should be treated as such. Have two or more staff members role-play a situation, such as how to act when two children get into a fight or what to do when a mother complains about another coworker. If there are new educational toys for the center, bring them to the meeting and have staff members practice how to work with them.
Learning and Education
Most child care facilities want to incorporate some elements of education into their establishment. Therefore, invite teachers or principals from kindergartens to speak to the staff about standards at their schools and ways in which teachers work with students. Work with the group to brainstorm a list of methods they can incorporate into the daily lives of the children at the center to foster their educational growth and development.
Have staff members take an anonymous survey or answer a questionnaire about how they think the child care center is developing, and whether it has made improvements discussed at previous meetings. Ask them to complete this survey before the meeting so that the problems can be addressed during the meeting. At the end, distribute an anonymous assessment of the meeting so you can see how the staff suggests you make the staff gathering more efficient the next time.
Jen Marx holds a Master of Arts in English and American literature. She is a consultant at a university writing center and has numerous print and online publications, including "Community College Campus News." Marx specializes in topics ranging from wedding planning to history to the environment.