Elevating Hard Conversations with Little Ones Featuring Dr. Lauren Starnes

Kris welcomes Dr. Lauren Starnes this week, VP of Early Childhood Education at Primrose Schools, where she supports curriculum development, implementation, and evaluation. Lauren’s new book, Big Conversations with Little Children, helps provide tools and techniques to help teachers and leaders overcome the stress and hurdles in education. Dr. Lauren talks with Kris about the incredible growth of the Primrose franchise, now with 500 locations, the many hats that teachers wear, how we can build trust with children and parents, and the difference between honest answers and oversharing.

Now also streaming video recorded versions of each episode on YouTube! Visit our channel, The Child Care Success Company, and make sure to subscribe so you never miss a new recording! 

Click here to listen to more episodes of Child Care Rockstar Radio™ with Kris Murray!

Here Are the Key Takeaways From This Episode: 

  • [8:27] As the VP of Early Childhood Education, Dr. Lauren’s job is to oversee everything that happens educationally within the four walls of Primrose Schools. With over 500 franchise locations, Primrose currently serves infants through kindergarten as well as before and after school.

  • [10:02] Dr. Lauren’s team has many roles including diving deep into research and development of the curriculum, assessment accreditation, fixtures and equipment, and much more.

  • [13:41] Kris asks Dr. Lauren what some of the top issues that she has seen taking place with her teacher teams, and how we can best set ourselves up to succeed. 

  • [14:28] We have to remember that teaching preschool is a difficult job already, and a stressful and multifaceted one

  • [15:15] Dr. Lauren discusses the importance of finding ways to support early childhood teachers, engage them, offer professional development, and pull them out of isolation

  • [17:30] The more we can relate to the family on a personal level, the more we’re going to be able to connect the chat on an educational level

  • [19:02] Kris and Dr. Lauren discuss ways that providers can help both children and parents develop trust with them.

  • [20:19] Dr. Lauren discusses her book, Big Conversations with Little Children, and gives examples of a few questions children may have that warrants a conversation that is supportive and builds trust.

  • [27:02] Dr. Lauren shares a few tips for how we can give honest answers to. children without scaring them

  • [27:43] Teachers wear many hats. Families see teachers just beyond the classroom. Sometimes they are a physical therapist, behavioral counselor, personal therapist, doctor, and almost everything in between. Dr. Lauren’s book helps teachers develop a system where they can provide resources when the child or family needs a professional

  • [29:51] Dr. Lauren and Kris are both strong believers in mentorship and discuss the benefits of it that they have seen. Kris talks about how her third-grade teacher helped set her up on a path of believing in herself.


Leave a Reply