Join us April 10-16 for a fun-filled week celebrating early learning, young children, their teachers, families, and communities during the 50th anniversary of Week of the Young Child. #WOTYC21

Today we know more than ever before about the importance of children’s earliest years in shaping their learning and development. Yet, never before have the needs of young children and their families been more pressing. The Week of the Young Child is an annual celebration sponsored by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the world’s largest early childhood education association, with nearly 80,000 members and a network of over 300 local, state, and regional Affiliates. The purpose of the Week of the Young Child is to focus public attention on the needs of young children and their families and to recognize the early childhood programs and services that meet those needs. The Week of the Young Child is a time to plan how we as a community will better meet the needs of all young children and their families. This week we are taking the opportunity to share inspirational, themed ideas but to also highlight some of our funded programs that align with these themes.

Smart Start of Mecklenburg County

Music Monday

We can’t think of a better way to celebrate Music Monday than with Dolly Parton! Dolly’s vision is to foster a love of reading among preschool children and their families by providing them with the gift of a specially selected book each month, mailed to their home. This ensures that every child has books, regardless of their family’s income. Enroll your child to receive FREE books here!

Smart Start of Mecklenburg County

Tasty Tuesday

What better way to celebrate Tasty Tuesday than at a restaurant? Our community partners at The Moo & Brew are donating 20% of daily sales to our mission. This supports our vision of all children in Charlotte / Mecklenburg County entering kindergarten healthy and ready to succeed.

Does your family have a young child with autism? Use the social story Eating in a Restaurant, provided by Guiding Parents to Services (GPS) to prepare your child for a successful experience. You can download the PDF here for free.

If you are not heading out for dinner, that’s alright! Tasty Tuesday isn’t just about eating your favorite foods together. It’s also about cooking together, which connects math with literacy skills and science while introducing ways to incorporate healthy habits into children’s lifestyles. Check out our GPS Coordinator making healthy spinach bites with some of the family members she serves in this video. You can follow along by making this easy recipe at home, too!

Smart Start of Mecklenburg County

Work Together Wednesday

Smart Start of Mecklenburg County works with other local organizations that support children age 0 -5. This year we kicked off #WOTYC21 together with our inaugural “Partner Powered Conference”, a day of interactive learning on the power of relationships. To learn more about programs that Smart Start of Mecklenburg works with through funding, click on the links below:


    Family Support

    Early Care & Eduation

    Early Literacy

Smart Start of Mecklenburg County

Artsy Thursday

Children develop creativity, social skills and fine motor skills with open-ended art projects where they can make choices, use their imaginations, and create with their hands. On Artsy Thursday, celebrate learning through a hands-on art project with The Basics Mecklenburg and Discovery Place Kids – Huntersville. Click here to RSVP through Facebook and to see virtual meeting details.

Smart Start of Mecklenburg County

Family Friday

Inspiring workplaces recognize that families matter most, and also that the families of employees are part of their support team. Check out our staff members and their families who work hard to ensure children have strong foundation for a healthy future.


Showcase your Week of the Young Child photos on social media using #WOTYC21.