Home Child Care Provider
When Monica Jackson befriended a nanny, she had no idea her career life was going to forever change. The nanny asked Monica to be her replacement and without looking back at her commercial loan lending career, Monica enrolled in the early childhood development program at Northern Virginia Community College. At the request of her professors, she went on to train other students in the program and continues to conduct workshops for providers and students, while also running her own home child care.
"If you are looking for a child to be successful, it is a process. Sometimes we dismiss the significance of the day-to-day instruction, but then you start to see all of the children’s accomplishments.”
Nutrition is taught through learning activities by incorporating many of the MyPlate resources, beginning with the Two Bite Club. Throughout the day, Monica acts as a role model for healthy habits and offers a variety of foods. The healthy habits that she instills in young children will serve as a foundation for life-long healthy choices.
Monica creates learning that is both intentional and experiential by making connections. With every lesson and activity, the children discuss what their goal is and what the primary lesson is. As they learn about and grow red beans and then spend the day at the farmer’s market where they see the beans, a connection is made. Monica’s goal is to equip each individual child with learning experiences and skills to be able to flourish when they move on to school.
Parents are a critical part of the learning process. A daily electronic photo album is sent home along with verbal reports, texting and newsletters. Monica knows that the parents have chosen her to take care of their children and she takes that responsibility seriously. Monica strives to find the "sweet spot" – that place where a connection is made with both the child and parent.
From Springfield, Virginia, Monica has been a CACFP participant through Fairfax County, Office for Children since 2004.