BANANews (and Fun Things to Do!)

It’s almost the weekend! As you get ready to unwind from the work week, consider checking out what’s been happening both at BANANAS and in the community.


In our BANANA Bites column, we gave our Top Ten Teen Babysitting Tips for youth who are looking to learn how to achieve “babysitting greatness.” From figuring out rates and transportation to setting a good example for little ones, these tips are excellent for any teenager interested in becoming a stellar babysitter. On Tuesday, we released our newest edition of What’s Happening for Parents and What’s Happening for Providers, which list all of our upcoming FREE summer workshops. Make sure you’re up to date on all the fun! We also added some more adorable kids crafts to our Pinterest board Hooray for Mother’s Day; if you haven’t checked it out all the ideas, like the Mama and Baby Elephant Handprints, then you’ll want to be sure to see all the cuteness today. Plus, if you want to support local families as you shop online for Mom, don’t forget to use and choose BANANAS as your nonprofit of choice!


If you haven’t signed up for our free six-week parenting series Spirited Child starting on Tuesday, May 5th, then register today! You’ll learn ways to deal with tantrums, defiance, aggression, shyness, and other challenging behaviors often displayed by “spirited” children. On Wednesday, May 6th, new parents we’ll be offering all kinds of information at our Booties Camp: Baby Basics workshop.


Join Youth Uprising on May 2 from 12pm to 5pm for their 10th Anniversary Block Party and celebrate with free food, live music, and Castlemont Community Playtime. If you’re little ones love picture books, cartoons, or comics (or all three), bring them to one of many Bay Area locations for Free Comic Book Day, also on May 2nd! Parents and providers, mark your calendars and come speak up at Stand for Children Day on May 6th. Hop on a bus at BANANAS and tell legislators how important it is to Invest In Kids!

Until Monday, stay in touch with us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest!

BANANews: Week in Review (We’re Closed Today Too)

Warm almost-weekend wishes to you! BANANAS is closed today for staff development but we’re still bringing you all of the week’s highlights as well as upcoming events at our organization and in the community.


On Wednesday we kicked off our Booties Camp series and had a wonderful turnout of parents and babies for a free workshop on Baby Language and Brain Development. If you are interested in any of the upcoming classes in this free series, such as Baby Yoga, Baby Sleep, Stroller Exercises, or more, then be sure to check out our complete calendar of parenting workshops. Bring your baby and meet other parents with little ones! This week was also exciting because Executive Director Rich Winefield was appointed to the State Advisory Council on Early Learning and Care. To hear more about this appointment and how it will allow BANANAS to support the future of California child care, read this week’s Blog Special.


For our ongoing Booties Camp classes, on Wednesday, April 29th, we’re offering Baby Massage! This is a great workshop providing techniques for helping your baby to relax while increasing parent-child bonding. Wednesday will also be the date of the workshop Best Practices for Employing a Nanny, a free class from Hand in Hand: the Domestic Employers Network that will explore how to develop and maintain respectful working relationships with caregivers. And if you have a three- or four-year-old, be sure to sign up for the fantastic class Living with Threes and Fours where we’ll discuss topics such as potty training, transitioning from a crib to a bed, and choosing the right preschool on Thursday, April 30th.


On Sunday, April 26th, grab the kids and head to the free Berkeley Family Bike Fest & Family Cycling Rodeo for bike safety, skills building, a family-fun trivia wheel, and bicycle-related games! If you’re kids love to perform, they can steal a moment in the spotlight at The Octopus Literary Salon at a free Kid’s Open Mic Brunch also on Sunday.

Until Monday, we’ll see you on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest (check out our Mother’s Day board!), Instagram, and LinkedIn. And, if you have a question about parenting or early child care that you want answered in our weekly BANANA Bites column, send an email to

BANANews: Week in Review & Fun Things to Do

Three cheers for Friday! It’s been a wonderful week at BANANAS and we’re excited to share everything that’s been going on.


April is such an important month for kids, and, in fact, it’s the Month of the Young Child! In addition to this designation, April is also noted as National Child Abuse Prevention Month and National Poetry Month. With such relevant topics being highlighted, this week we posted a difficult but extremely necessary BANANA Bites column on Talking to Kids About Molestation. We recognize how tough it can be to address this with young children and hope that the ideas provided enable parents to teach kids what is appropriate and what’s not. We love responding to the questions of parents and early learning professionals, so if there is a subject you would like us to cover, send an email to To bring attention to the fun of poetry month, we created a whimsical Pinterest board called A World of Poetry filled with quotes from Roald Dahl, A.A. Milne, and Lewis Carroll, along with crafty ideas for little ones such as a Making a Poet-tree. Be sure to check out all the imagination inspiration!


New parents will gain lots of helpful information at Thursday’s free Choosing Infant Care workshop, and Spanish-speaking child care providers will enjoy Aprender a través de las Relaciones con Bebés y Niños Pequeños, the first in a two-part series beginning next Saturday, April 18th. And, we still have four remaining slots for our CPR & First Aid Training on Sunday, April 19th, so call us today for registration forms or stop by to reserve your space!


There are some uniquely awesome events taking place in the Bay Area this weekend, including the free I’m a Performer Family Concert with the Berkeley Symphony. At this all-ages event, kids are invited to bring their instruments or raise their voices alongside professional orchestra players. On Sunday, families can watch jugglers, listen to children’s music, and indulge in local food items at a free Berkeley Bay Earth Day Festival. Get a jump-start on your Earth Day celebrations by checking out all the super fun ideas on our Earth Day for Little Ones Pinterest board.

Enjoy the sunshine and we’ll see you on Monday!

BANANews: This Week at BANANAS

It’s been another wonderful week here at BANANAS and in case you missed any of the fun, we’re bringing you a complete wrap-up right here! On March 8 we celebrated International Women’s Day by supporting the #DearMe campaign with a fabulous photo from Finance Associate Olivia and a video from Communications Associate Elyce. We also put a spotlight on Women’s History Month with a Pinterest board full of great books and crafts, including activities based on the amazing lives of Georgia O’Keeffe, Frida Kahlo, and Bessie Coleman.

To get ready for St. Patrick’s Day, we put together a super festive Pinterest board with snacks and art ideas all devoted to shamrocks, rainbows, leprechauns, and good luck! So if you’re looking for ways to celebrate on Tuesday, March 17 (besides wearing lots of green), be sure to check it out.

We’re gearing up for our upcoming parenting workshop What Great Parents Do on March 25 and our Fathers Support Group beginning on April 1st. For providers, we have an informative training on How To Take Care of Children When They Are Sick on March 19th as well as the quarterly Directors’ Roundtable on April 9th.

For our weekly BANANA Bites column, we tackled the dreaded discovery of head lice and offered top tips for ensuring these pests are wiped out quickly. If you have a parenting or early childhood education question you want the Bunch to answer, send an email to

Until next week, be sure to stay connected with us online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn!