Two nutritious snacks per day are provided. Snacks consist of a variety of different fruits and vegetables, dairy, whole grains, etc. We follow Canada’s Food Guide when planning snacks. The center is peanut-free, and any other allergies are taken into consideration when planning snacks. Families provide a lunch for their child daily. We supply homogenized milk for the children. If an infant is on breastmilk and/or formula, we can store some here to have on hand. Breast milk can be stored up to six months, and formula, in the original container, can be stored in the cupboards. We make bottles as needed.
Outdoor Play and Learning
For outdoor play, we have several places to explore. We have two yards, as well as the facility backs onto Hook Park. Westmount Park is just down the street from us, as well as Westmount Elementary. We spend plenty of time outside every day, rain or shine.
During the summer, we go on many field trips. Parents are given ample notice for field trips. If we are going anywhere that is outside of walking distance, we will take the city bus. Special field trips that require parent volunteers, we will utilize parent and staff vehicles with proper car seats for every child.
Infants and Toddlers nap throughout the day on their own individual schedules. It is important that all children have time during the day to rest their bodies and unwind. Children are required to have a minimum of 30 minutes of quiet/rest time per day. Children that nap in the 3-5 program have a 2-hour window to nap. Children that do not nap will be able to do quiet activities during the nap window.
Parents can drop by whenever; however, this varies with some children. For some children, seeing their parents come to the center and then leave again can be disruptive for them and upset them. A parent can come and breastfeed their child at any time. We have an open-door policy and the only time the door isn’t available to be open is when we are away from the center with the children. Our doors are always locked for the safety of the children. Other people that are allowed to visit during childcare hours, are families touring the center and anyone scheduled to come do activities with the children.
Communicating With Families
Communication is so important between families and Educators. Educators strive to make time to communicate with families at pick up; however the end of the day and pick up times can be busy.
We use the Hi Mama app to effectively communicate with families throughout the day and at the end of the day with reports sent right to parents’ emails.