April 20th is Volunteer Recognition Day

aaInviting parents and community members into your program as volunteers is a great way to encourage positive relationships and involvement in your community.

There are many ways to involve volunteers:

You can have a career day and ask family and community members to speak to the children about their jobs.

You can host a community helpers / safety awareness day to help the young people learn to identify safe adults in their community, such as policeman, fireman, letter carriers and others they may encounter and recognize by their uniforms.

You can invite parents into your room to help with a craft or special activity.

You can ask parents to share a special talent or skill with your class . . . think outside of the box!  This can be playing an instrument, showing the children how to do aerobics or yoga, having a cooking lesson, etc.

You can host a nationality night to celebrate each family’s heritage.  Ask them to share foods, songs, games, traditions, etc.

You can invite parents in to read their favorite children’s book to the class.

Click here for more ideas on how to

include volunteers in your program:

bbbShowing your appreciation:

It is important to let your volunteers know that they are appreciated.  This is also an important social skill to teach the children in your program.

Have the children make thank you cards or pictures for the volunteer.  You can even take pictures of the volunteer while they are busy helping out your classroom and include them in your thank you card.

On a larger scale, you can also host a volunteer appreciation event once a year, such as a breakfast or luncheon.  Include the children, as that is the motivation for your volunteers to participate in your program.  Have them make placemats and table decorations and even a small craft as a gift for each volunteer to show their appreciation.

Showing your appreciation in a genuine way is what will keep your volunteers coming back!

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