Now Hiring!

bigstock-Happy-teacher-sitting-with-chi-50600429_webLittle Steps Early Learning Center in Somersworth, NH is currently accepting applications for full time teachers to provide care and nurturing to children ages 6 weeks to 3 years old. Full time positions are currently available in our infant and toddler rooms.

Eligible full time employees can enjoy benefits such as health, dental, vision, disability insurance, life insurance, PTO and holiday pay!

At Little Steps Early Learning Center, children always come first. Our programs are designed to encompass all learning styles and abilities. We use the Creative Curriculum and provide a variety of developmentally appropriate learning opportunities.

At Little Steps Early Learning Center, we welcome all children and families. We appreciate that all families are unique and that we can all learn from each other. We embrace the diversity of each child and family.

Candidates must have a a minimum of 1,000 hours of experience working with children in a licensed child care program. Previous experience caring for infants or toddlers in a childcare center is preferred. Must have the ability to work independently and be comfortable with exercising good judgement and decision making skills as well as maintaining a safe environment at all times.

Please send a cover letter and resume to:

Fax: 603-692-1879
Or mail to:

Human Resources
7 Works Way
Somersworth, NH 03878

Little Steps Early Learning Center is a smoke-free work environment.

Holiday Survival Guide: Stress Management For Parents

Thanksgiving is over but the holiday season is in full swing. By now, you’re shopping for gifts on your very little spare time, staying up late planning another holiday event, and maybe even working additional hours to bring in extra money. This time of year can trigger nostalgia with holiday lights, first snowfalls, and family traditions but it can also wreak havoc on our mental and physical health. Parenting is hard! Parenting during the holidays? Forget about it! Instead of wearing yourself thin this year, make a plan with your spouse or partner to mentally check out from the stress and do something that lowers the blood pressure. Need ideas? We’ve got you covered.

Find A Responsible Babysitter:

This is essential! When you feel ready to leave your sweet little one for a couple of hours, find someone that is qualified and trustworthy. This can be a family member or someone you hire from a website like Take a date night before a big event. Detach yourself from the obligations and planning and treat yourselves to a night out. Add some extra money to the holiday budget for this and know that it is going to good use.

Get Some Extra Rest:

Ok, you’re a parent, this isn’t always possible. I get it! If you have a child that still loves nap time, forget all the list making and present wrapping and catch some Zzzzz’s with them. You don’t need a marathon 2 hour snooze. Having a 20-30 min nap can help take the edge off and give you extra energy to make it through the rest of the day. This can be extremely helpful for parents of infants and toddlers. I’m speaking from experience.

Get Outside & Breathe:

Researchers are discovering that surrounding yourself with nature can be one of the most powerful stress-relievers out there. Bundle up the kiddos and get outside for a walk or even just a hang out in the yard and play games. Take some deep breaths, center yourself, and enjoy the moment. Stop thinking about the things you have to do and focus on being present with your family and yourself. You may be surprised at the results!

Practice Self Care:

This is another task that oftentimes seems impossible. Self care doesn’t always have to mean scheduling a massage or a night out with friends. Start small and take a relaxing bath with essential oils when the kids go to bed or pop in a movie with a glass of wine. Taking time for yourself is NOT selfish. It’s essential for happiness and wellbeing.

Have more Stress Management Tips?

Send us an email and we’ll post them on Facebook!

Teaching Our Little Ones The True Meaning Of The Holidays

The Holidays are fast approaching and the madness will soon begin. Hosting family, cooking, cleaning, wrapping, shopping – it can be completely overwhelming. This year, step back from the holiday craziness and take some time to teach your kids the true meaning of compassion and selflessness. This can be as simple as purchasing a gift for a family in need or donating to your local food bank. Helping kids learn that the holiday season is about giving – not just getting – will not only allow them engage in community service projects but also create new family traditions that focus on the true meaning of the holiday season.

Here are some great family projects that give back:

Volunteer at a Soup Kitchen: With all the extra cookies and sweets around, it’s easy to forget that people in your own town are going hungry. Sign up with your child to help serve a meal at a local soup kitchen or homeless shelter. Some organizations will ask for volunteers to donate the meal ingredients as well as prepare it: Let your little one pick out one of their favorite recipes to make and serve for those less fortunate.

Click here to find shelters in the Dover, NH area.

Adopt a Family:  Adopt a family in need this year, and let your child help pick out presents and clothes for a less fortunate family in your area. Explain that not everyone can afford to celebrate the holidays, but you can make sure other kids have gifts to unwrap this year by sharing.

Visit New Generation for ways you can help.

Support Our Troops: Help your child prepare a holiday package for a service person who is spending the holidays away from home.

Visit Operation Give to learn how you can send a care package to a soldier.

Have more suggestions for us? Leave us a message below and we’ll post them to our Facebook page throughout the holiday season.

Sniffle Strategies: Tips To Stay Healthy Through This Year’s Cold And Flu Season

If you have kids, chances are you’ll have at least one sizeable cold this year. If you’re lucky, you’ll dodge the flu all together. University of Arizona scientists have found that when someone is sick in an office, it takes only four hours for surfaces like coffee pot handles, copy-machine buttons and the fridge door to show traces of infectious virus. EWW! Considering that the 2014-2015 flu season was one of the worst on record—it even reached epidemic status—it’s well worth arming yourself against aches, cough, fever and general misery.

Sometimes coming into contact with germs is unavoidable but there are always ways you can stay ahead of the game:

Get Your Flu Shot: Seems like a no brainer, right? The flu shot is your single best defence in contracting the flu. Most doctors offices and local clinics offer them throughout the year. Do it, or suffer the consequences. Salmon Falls Family Health is offering Adult Flu Clinics on Monday, October 12 & Thursday, October 15 for established patients.

Wash Your Hands: Another no brainer. It’s easy to forget this important defence against cold and flu virus but it’s also another simple and effective way for germs to die a quick death before reaching their target destination, aka: you.

Exercise: Maintaining a regular exercise routine is a great way to boost your immune-system, which can prevent cold bugs you do catch from making you sick.

Get your Zzz’s: Going to bed early to ensure you get your 8 hours, or more, will also keep your immune system in tip top shape.

Eat Healthy: We all slip and head for the junk food instead of the salad but making sure you get plenty of vitamins through a healthy diet is key to helping your immune system go strong. Try to avoid a sugar overload. Instead, snack on fruit and veggie sticks with peanut or almond butter.

Carry antibacterial wipes: You never know what’s lurking on shopping carts and gas handles. Better to give those a quick wipe down before getting your shopping on then regret it the next day. I don’t leave home without mine!

Visit Little Steps at Toddlerfest!

Little Steps is excited to be a part of Toddlerfest at the Children’s Museum of NH!

Girls_applesToddlerfest will take place from Saturday, Sept. 19th through Sunday, October 4th. The museum describes it as:

When the big kids go back to school, it’s time for young visitors to rule the roost and enjoy exciting activities geared just for them and their caregivers. Our annual Toddlerfest celebration offers guests ages 0–5 experiences with music and movement, science, art and storytelling while caregivers learn how these experiences relate to their child’s cognitive growth and development.

Little Steps will be at Toddlerfest on Friday, Sept. 25th from 10:15 am – 12:00 pm, offering valuable information about child development, as well as fun activities with apples for the kiddos. Giveaways as well! Hope to see you there!

Tips on Taming the Toddler Tantrum

To Jumperoo…Or Not To Jumperoo? That Is The Question.

Hazel playing happily in her Exersaucer.

Hazel playing happily in her Exersaucer.

If you have an infant, you have at least heard the words ‘Jumperoo’ and ‘Exersaucer,’ whether or not you know the difference between the two. Just like the Bumbo seat, and probably every other baby-related apparatus, there is controversy about their usefulness versus their detrimental effects on your child. Since many of the most commonly known pros and cons of the Exersaucer and the Jumperoo are the same or very similar, we’ll give them a once over simultaneously.

Need a visual? A Jumperoo is what Hazel is sitting in in the picture at the top. The brand of this particular one is ‘Exersaucer,’ which is a tad confusing. The Exersaucer is pictured to the right.

What makes them awesome:

Yes, both the Exersaucer and the Jumperoo are loads of fun for your baby thanks to all the gadgets on them and the jumping or bouncing they allow your baby to try on for size before they are able to walk. Just look at the picture of Hazel in her Jumperoo – have you ever seen a happier baby?

But the biggest plus, and perhaps the entire reason these things were invented – is they allow us as parents to get things done by keeping our children entertained and out of harm’s way. If you have ever gone a couple days without showering because you have a 5 month old attached to you constantly, and it’s just time to shower, you get where I’m coming from.

Why they might not actually be that awesome:

If you want an explanation in full detail as to why the Exersaucer in particular is not a great ergonomic or developmental choice for your little one, read this post from

I’ll sum it up for you –

  • Both the Exersaucer and the Jumperoo situate the baby in a swayback position while leaning forward, compensating by tilting the head too far back. Poor posture = bad.
  • The baby ends up mostly balancing on his/her toes, which can overdevelop the calf muscles and possibly lead to toe walking later.
  • Both items can delay the baby’s development when it comes to balance control because they don’t need it when in one of these, and it has been argued that they can delay standing and walking instead of encouraging it.
  • The Exersaucer in particular places toys in front of baby, easily within reach, which removes the need to get around and explore the environment naturally…not that the baby can do that anyway while in this or the Jumperoo.

So really, is EVERYTHING bad for babies?

The general consensus is that this kind of equipment might not be optimal, but it’s convenient in a pinch and sometimes necessary when certain things can’t wait any longer (a.k.a. that shower). Your baby will not likely get hurt in one of these, but aim to not use it for more than 15-20 minutes per day, as a last resort. Playing hands-on with your baby, helping him or her reach those milestones in a more natural environment is best for your child’s development.


The Adventurous Eater: Preparing For Baby’s First Bites

tilly_foodHas your little one been eyeballing your breakfast? Maybe she is reaching out to grab your fork or spoon during dinner. If this sounds familiar, chances are they are ready to try solid foods. First bites are a big milestone in a baby’s life. Often parents begin with rice cereal or baby oatmeal. But today, the bland fare that has traditionally dominated the diet of American babies – cereal, plain pasta, and the like – may be creating a generation of picky eaters. In other words, branching out of the traditional norm and dressing up baby’s first foods with spices won’t hurt your baby. In fact, breastfed babies have already enjoyed this experience as breast milk takes on the flavors of the food the mother eats. If you dine at your favorite Indian restaurant and then nurse, your baby will also enjoy a flavorful Indian meal. Going from flavor to bland won’t seem like much fun to baby. Of course, mixing foods and spices together should only be done after food allergies are ruled out.

When choosing ingredients for preparing your baby’s first meal, one thing that is known is that the organic factor matters more for certain foods than others. For example, asparagus, sweet potatoes, and avocados tend to have relatively low levels of pesticide residue. On the other hand, conventional apples, lettuce, and strawberries have some of the highest levels. For guidance, the nonprofit Environmental Working Group ranks 53 fruits and vegetables from worst to best in terms of pesticide residue.

If you find yourself ready to add Baby Food Chef to your mom resume, consider tossing some some rosemary in with that squash, liven up that chicken with a dash of cumin, and give those mashed potatoes a kick with a blend of paprika and parsley. You may be surprised by your baby’s reaction.

>> Recipe: Simple Apples & Cinnamon


3 organic apples

Teaspoon of Cinnamon


Peel, core, and slice apples.

Add apples to steamer basket and allow them to become soft (8-10min).

Transfer steamed apples to a food processor and add cinnamon.

Blend apples to desired consistency.


>> Recipe: Apples, Cinnamon & Strawberry Puree

5 or 6 medium sized organic strawberries (washed)

3 organic apples

Teaspoon of Cinnamon


Slice strawberries in half.

Peel, core, and slice apples.

Add strawberries and apples to steamer basket and allow them to become soft (8-10min).

Transfer steamed strawberries, apples, and cinnamon to a food processor and blend to desired consistency.


Learn About Our Programs:

Before You Use the Bumbo Seat…

Hazel sitting in her Bumbo Seat for the first..and probably the last time.

Hazel sitting in her Bumbo Seat for the first..and probably the last time.

This one-piece, adorable little seat called the Bumbo Seat is made of foam, and has been popular among parents with infants for several years. Its popularity is no surprise – as soon as an infant can support his/her own head (usually by 4 months of age), he/she can sit upright, fully supported by the Bumbo and play with arms free while mom and dad finally get some stuff done.   It seems harmless enough, but in addition to its voluntary recall of 1 million Bumbo seats in 2007 to address the dangers of using the seat on raised surfaces, and its recall in 2012 to add a seatbelt after numerous babies fell out and suffered skull fractures, pediatric physical therapists believe it interferes with normal motor skill development.

Rebecca Talmud is a Pediatric Physical Therapist who published a blog about the Bumbo Seat as a guest on Mama OT. She describes the following as standard motor milestones in developing infants:

  • Between 6-9 months we expect typically developing children to begin to sit upright on the floor for short periods of time, first using support from hands and later independently.
  • Between 9-12 months, we expect children will begin to gain more control in seated position. When seated on the floor, they will begin to turn their trunk to reach and manipulate toys placed around them.

Rebecca states, “When children are placed in the Bumbo before they are developmentally ready for sitting it can interfere with the natural progression of skills.”

How exactly does it interfere? Rebecca explains that the seat claims to hold the child in a specific position that allows for the ‘active practice of the head and postural control,’ when in reality, there is no active control being achieved. The child is passively placed in position and then locked in.” There is a lack of muscle activation and joint mobility while in the Bumbo, and no natural weightbearing occuring, which robs the child of the sensory input needed for development.

Talmud’s post goes on to mention other inconsistencies between what the Bumbo claims to accomplish and what actually happens during use in regards to posture, noted in the Chicago Tribune by Mary Weck, Clinical Coordinator of Physical Therapy at Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago.

Seems a no-brainer to toss your Bumbo Seat so it can join the ranks of other failed and unsafe baby equipment. Instead of a Bumbo, help your baby practice sitting by physically sitting with your baby. If you need to get stuff done, make use of a Moby wrap or Ergo.

Check back later for the lowdown on the ExerSaucer!


Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Tips On How To Keep Baby Safe In Winter Weather

Babies are not experts at regulating their body temperature quite yet, but that doesn’t mean they should be bundled up like mini space travelers to enjoy a winter stroll. Getting outside is a good cure for cabin fever and can break up the day when you’ve spent WAY too much time indoors. To keep baby warm and comfortable, the general rule is to dress her in one layer more than you’re wearing yourself. However, each baby is different, so see what works best for your child and enjoy some much needed fresh air.

Baby Matilda is all ready for a  Winter stroll.

Baby Matilda is all ready for a Winter stroll.

Here are more tips on how to keep baby happy and comfy outdoors:

  • A thick winter hat is the number one necessity. On very cold days, be sure the hat covers the ears; one that fastens under the chin is helpful to keep it positioned.
  • Keep fingers and toes protected with mittens, thick socks, and booties (if available).
  • Wear your baby against your body in a sling or carrier. This can help to keep her warmer than when she’s riding in a stroller.
  • Keep a warm, thick blanket handy in case baby needs extra protection.
  • Bright sun against white snow can be hard on the eyes. Keeping a pair of baby sunglasses with you can help her enjoy her walk while looking fashionable.

Protecting Babies Skin:

The winter season can be irritating for your child’s tender skin. Cold, dry air can sap moisture, and your little one’s rosy cheeks can quickly become leathery and wind-burned. Luckily, there are basic steps you can take to protect baby from seasonal skin hazards.

  • If any areas of your child’s skin look or feel dry, immediately apply a generous amount of baby moisturizer.
  • Purchase perfume-free baby soaps and lotions, which are less likely to be irritating.
  • Use a humidifier in baby’s room or around the house. For safety reasons, don’t place the humidifier near or directly over your child.
  • Dressing your child in too many or too heavy layers can make him sweat, leading to blocked glands and skin irritation, while under-dressing can dry out exposed skin or aggravate a preexisting condition.
  • Cut down on daily baths. Two or three times a week is enough for an infant’s first year; more baths may dry out the skin, especially during the winter. If your baby finds a daily bath soothing, make sure it lasts no longer than 10 minutes and that the water is lukewarm, not hot.

Keep these tips in mind, because ‘baby, it’s bad out there,’ and before you know it, winter will move out so you and your little one can enjoy the fresh spring air!