Wisconsin Department of Children and Families

Protecting Children, Strengthening Families, Building Communities

Have Questions?

Call 1-888-713-KIDS

Report Child Care Fraud

If you suspect Child Care Fraud, be a part of the solution. You may remain anonymous. Please fill out the Child Care Fraud Form, or email dcfmbchildcarefraud @wisconsin.gov.

Report a Child Care Concern or Complaint

If you have a concern about something going on in a child care facility or you suspect child abuse, neglect or exploitation at a child care facility, please use the drop-down menu on the Tell Us How We Are Doing page to fill out the appropriate complaint form.

Find Your Local YoungStar Office

Questions?
Call 888-713-KIDS (5437).

find your local youngstar office

Resources for Parents

YoungStar connects parents to tools and information to help them raise healthy, happy kids! Learn what to look for when selecting a child care provider; find information on early childhood education, nutrition and healthy learning environments; and discover activities that promote children’s healthy brain development.

YoungStar gives parents peace of mind. And, it helps you give your child(ren) a promising start in life.

Read through the various resources to learn more about the growth and development of children.

 

Videos

What is YoungStar?

Learn more about the value of high-quality early child care from Kathleen Gallagher, a research scientist at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute at UNC. Dr. Gallagher’s research and applied work focuses on the design, implementation and evaluation of evidence-based approaches that support the learning and well-being of young children, families, and early childhood professionals.

YoungStar helps parents find quality child care and assists child care providers who want to improve the quality of their care.

When you give your child engaging one-on-one experiences and a nurturing environment, you’re setting the stage for lifelong success

The short periods of stress children experience in the first five years of life are an important part of healthy brain development.

YoungStar Fact Sheets

Here's a collection of fact sheets to help families learn more about choosing child care, nutrition, and more.

 

Find Resources by Topic

a picture of children at different ages

Developmental Milestones

The way your child speaks, learns, acts and even plays can offer insight into your child’s development. At each stage of development, children reach developmental milestones. These are things most children can do by a certain age, like rolling over or walking. Every time you visit your child’s doctor, talk to him or her about the developmental milestones your child has reached and what to expect next.

Early Literacy

Early Literacy is the foundation of a child's development. The important time period in the life of a child, as it relates to brain development, is from the ages of birth to five years old. Learn more about early literacy and how you, as a parent, can provide experiences through reading and writing, or even just talking and listening to your child, that will prepare them to succeed in life.

Read more on Early Literacy

Family Engagement

A growing body of research suggests that meaningful engagement of families in their children’s early learning supports school readiness and later academic success. Learn how you, as a parent, can establish a positive relationship with your child care providers by exploring these resources.

Plain Talk for Parents

Although each and every child is unique, there are some general patterns of growth and development that apply to most children. Read these "Plain Talk for Parents" brochures to learn more about general developmental patterns, some typical traits of young children at each age level, and what you can do when you discover your child is ready for new activities and skills.

Read more on Plain Talk

Early Brain Development

Our brains never develop faster than they do in our first five years of life. In fact, by the age of five, your child’s brain is already 90% fully grown. This means that the experiences and interactions your child has in the first five years of life lay the foundation for later success. High-quality early care and education provides the kinds of experiences and interactions that help your child develop language and math skills, social and emotional competence, and healthy habits.

Talking to Your Child Care Providers

Ever since you became a parent—and perhaps even before—you have been learning about child development and the types of environments that boost this development. Now you are ready to find a child care provider who shares your understandings of high-quality learning environments and who can meet your specific child care needs. For assistance in your search, there are several resources and people to guide you.

Read more on Talking to Your Child Care Providers