The Mother Goose on the Loose Blog

Children and Climate Change


Did you know that children are uniquely vulnerable to health impacts caused by climate change?

Climate change affects all of us, and recent studies point to the adverse effects it has on children. There is a movement to untie early childhood professionals to learn about the seriousness of the situation and to advocate for children’s health.

Recently I attended a webinar, “Collaborating for Kids: Climate Change, Environmental Justice, and Advocacy” presented by the Campaign for Grade Level Reading (CGLR). Dr. Joshua Sparrow from the Boston Children’s Hospital Spoke with Dr. Rupa Basu from the EPA on the impact of extreme heat on babies.  He recommended viewing this video of Dr. Basu talking about climate change on premature birth and low birth weight.

Dr. Sparrow also spoke about The Early Years Climate Plan and he encouraged us to check it out at:   In addition to having great information, this is one of the most beautiful websites I have seen!

Interested in joining the Early Years Climate Task ForceFind out more about it here.

Facilitator Trainings for MGOL: Hatchlings


About Mother Goose on the Loose: Hatchlings

Learn how to reach families before and after birth, through this interactive program that shares the importance of early reading, singing, talking, and playing with babies to build early literacy skills and strong family bonding. Gain knowledge and confidence in providing effective early literacy trainings for expectant parents and parents of young infants.

Hatchlings currently consists of two parts:

  • Baby on the Way (formerly “Ready to Hatch”) is for expectant parents;
  • New Baby and Me (formerly “In the Nest”) is for parents with newborns.

Trainings are available online as well as in person. Hybrid trainings are also possible. 

Walking duck feet

About Hatchlings: Ready to Hatch (Baby on the Way)

This training prepares facilitators to implement the Hatchlings “Baby on the Way” program for expectant parents.  The training will:  

  • Provide an overview of all materials, familiarize facilitators with the songs and rhymes,
  • Explain and provide practice facilitating the scripts and using the panels, so facilitators are comfortable and confident
  • Provide an opportunity to discuss considerations for virtual and in-person sessions, program customization, and ask questions
  • Discuss marketing strategies


“Ready to Hatch” (Baby on the Way) Training Overview


Part 1: Introduction to Hatchlings  – This introduction explains what Hatchlings is, and emphasizes the importance of planning ahead. It covers:

    • Marketing strategies
    • Finding community partners
    • Drumming up an audience
    • Using a timeline
    • Purchasing items needed


Part 2: Training  – The training piece prepares facilitators to implement Hatchlings: “Baby on the Way” for expectant parents by:

  1. Providing an overview of all materials related to Hatchlings: Baby on the Way
  2. Familiarizing facilitators with all of the Baby on the Way songs and rhymes
  3. Explaining the script format; giving practice facilitating the scripts and using the panels to help facilitators feel comfortable and confident 
  4. Identifying strategies to adapt scripts and panels in ways that personalize them but stay true to the content.
  5. Discussing considerations for presenting virtual as well as in-person sessions
  6. Exploring multiple ways to find community partners
  7. Brainstorming marketing techniques
  8. Examining a sample timeline designed to aid with marketing, purchasing, and promoting the program
  9. Introducing strategies for individual libraries’ and community partners to promote their own programs and services to Baby on the Way program participants and identifying methods to share their materials.


Part 3: Office hours

During online “office hours”, libraries and their community partners can confer with Dr. Betsy. They will then be given a break-out room where they can being planning their collaborative program, with Betsy on hand to answer questions or offer suggestions.

In addition, Betsy will be available during the entire year following the introduction to Hatchlings to answer questions and provide advice.


Part 4: Debrief

A final online or in-person meeting for sharing observations and discussing ways to continue offering Hatchlings programming in the future wraps up the first official training period.

Walking duck feet

Certificate of completion available upon request with successful completion of post-test.

Cost of scheduled online training:

  • Fee for all online trainings and meetings mentioned above:   $320. To find out more and register, click here. 
    • Group rates available for groups of 10 or more. Contact for more information.
  • Fee for printed materials to be ordered from Booklogix (Instruction Guide and Panels$79.00 plus shipping and handling in the US (this is a separate fee and will not part of the course registration)   WWWWWWWW 
In-house costs:
  • Fee for supplies: This in-house fee will depend of which supplies you choose to offer.  Facilitators will need supplies to present the program. A list of the  resources and prices will be provided; since it is recommended that a maximum of 15 families attend a session, the approximate cost at the present time is $800 to have everything ready to go.
  • It is recommended that parents receive a “gift” after the session (such as a board book), which they can use to practice the skills they have learned at home.  
  • If funding is an issue, “gifts” for families can be replaced with different board books already in the library.


Tickets for good, not greed

Upcoming Webinar


Upcoming Webinar:


Resources for Freelancers and the Self-Employed


If you are self-employed as I am, the Freelancers Union can be a wonderful resource for you.

One of my friends here in Baltimore told me about it when Mother Goose on the Loose, LLC was just about 10 years old. At that time, the Freelancers Union in Baltimore was still having monthly SPARK meetings with speakers on different topics useful for consultants.  The meetings were a wonderful place to network and meet other freelancers who did different types work than I did with MGOL. One person I met was an editor who did some work for me when I was designing my first online course, and another was a grant writer who successful wrote a grant for me.

Once the legal clinic at the New York Freelancers Union were scheduling free 30 minute meetings with lawyers, so I was able to use that benefit. Plus, when I needed to purchase business insurance, the negotiated group prices of the Freelancers Union were the best around. They also have group prices for health insurance and dental insurance.

Don’t take my word for it; if you are a one-person company or are thinking about forming your own LLC, organization, or company, check them out at

Another great resource is the Small Business Association (

Through the SBA, you can get a mentor, usually a retired business person, who can guide you through the steps of starting your own business, and running it.  The SBA offers classes on a wide variety of topics from “How to Create a Business Plan” to “Finding Funding During COVID.”

The SBA also provides link to other resources, such as:

Membership is free for both the Freelancers Union and the SBA.

Since librarians love to share information, I wanted to share this information with those colleagues who do free-lance consulting or have their own businesses.

Proud member of Freelancers Union

Trip to Montana

In August, I conducted a MGOL workshop for Parents as Teachers in Superior, Montana. There were only two librarians, but lots of parent educators, PACES educators, Pre-K and Kindergarten teachers, and a variety of people who work in different roles at the Mineral County Health Department.
About 5 years ago. I traveled to Montana for the first time to conduct a training for the state library’s Reading Rendezvous. One of the participants, Laura Acker, is a parent educator. She brought MGOL to this area and the Mineral County Health Department believes the effects have been so positive on families and the community that they brought me here to train more people.
The people in Montana are incredibly friendly and the scenery is exquisite. One of the librarians brought me some Huckleberry jam that was made by her grandmother, and it was delicious. I had never tasted huckleberries before. The person at the Mineral County Health Department recommended that I stay in a yurt rather than a hotel or motel, and it was an incredible experience! (See the yurt below. The cows in the neighboring field liked to come over and moo “hello” in the mornings!)
 A yurt in the middle of a Montana field.

Today, a few weeks after the training, I received the following email from Laura, who gave me permission to post it:

I am not your typical attendee to this organization’s training.  I work for the Mineral County Health Department, Superior, Montana, and I am a parent Educator. I visit families who have young children ages 0-5 in their homes and teach parents about child development and bring fun activities that support optimal development.  By default, I was also offering story times in my community’s library because our community did not have one and we were in need of a place for families with young children to gather.  The librarian saw an opportunity for me to receive some training in Storytime demonstration and  I was fortunate to attend a training hosted by the Montana Library Association in 2019. 

At that training I was introduced to the Mother Goose on the Loose story time curriculum.  That training was transformational for story time in our small rural county.  I was given the tools to deliver a story time that parents saw their children, even babies, engage in.  The parents learned songs and stories to take home and perform with their children in their home environment.  I saw attendance rise and the community of young parents shared their love of MGOL with others with young children. 

Currently, I host story time 2 times a week in two different libraries using the MGOL curriculum.  I have been using this curriculum and see the affect it has on school readiness.  Children are walking into preschool ready to sit and learn.  They know how to take turns. They are familiar with rhyming and how words are broken down into syllables.  They are inclusive and celebrate others.  Parents are transformed as well.  They are asked to engage in their child’s learning right from the beginning and be a role model for how to participate. Parents grow in confidence to sing in public, participate in somewhat goofy actions, and set a routine that encourages literacy.  Families in Mineral County feel welcomed into the Library and are checking out children’s books without worry of the consequences (fines, ruined books). Parents report learning that they didn’t realize the importance of repetition until they attended MGOL. 

As an implementor of this curriculum, I can’t tell you how many parents thank me for offering something weekly that they can take their children to that brings them so much joy.  Parents reported that they do not sing with others outside of church.  MGOL provides adults and children that emotional release that singing brings to our bodies and souls.  MGOL is transforming parents of young children and I strongly recommend MGOL to any one who works with parents and young children whether they are librarians, child care providers, parent educators, social workers, teachers or whatever profession that feels called to support the bond of the parent child relationship. 


Laura Acker

I love the fact that a nursery rhyme based early literacy program touches lives in such unique and profound ways. I am grateful every day for the opportunity I have been given with MGOL.