ABC Daycare Centre has been operating in the Ottawa since 1985. We are a licensed non-profit child care service providing high-quality care to children ages 6 months to 5 years. Our child care facilities comply with all regulations from the Ministry of Education and Ottawa Public Health.
The main objective of our Centres is to provide a safe, happy, healthy, and stimulating environment for all of the children in our care. Our teaching staff utilize ELECT principles in their programming for the children and are guided by the Ontario Ministry of Education’s document “How Does Learning Happen?”. The 4 core elements of the Ministry’s document focus on Belonging, Engagement, Expression, and Wellbeing of children in their learning environment.
We know that positive experiences in early childhood set the foundation for lifelong learning, promote positive behaviour, good health practices, and supports overall wellbeing. Our goal is to build positive and responsive relationships that support our children and their families. We do this by observing, interacting, and listening to the children, learning about their lives and interests; by sharing and exchanging information with our families; and by incorporating aspects of the children’s interests and family values into our program to promote a feeling of belonging and community. We believe that “every child deserves to have someone’s eyes light up when they enter the room” making them feel special and among friends. Parents are encouraged to communicate with their child care program when they want to by logging into the secure parent portal of our HiMama on-line application, or if they prefer they may call the supervisor at the centre for updates. Our children’s activities and interests are written on the white board leading into each program to provide parents with a brief snapshot of their child’s day, and this information is also included on their child’s daily report. At the end of each day, HiMama e-mails an electronic daily report to parents noting their child’s activities, meals, sleep times, toileting routines, needed supplies, with occasional picture/video documentation. Our educators utilize the HiMama application to chart the children’s routines, to document their observations, and to track the children’s achievements in relation to the ELECT domains/skills. Through daily reflection on their knowledge of their children, and their understanding of child development, our educators are able to provide engaging programs that challenge children to a higher level of learning.
At ABC Daycare Centre, we believe that, as an inclusive learning environment, every child’s needs are special, whereby staff focus on the individual interests, skill level, and abilities of each child. We know that all children are competent and capable learners, curious investigators, and rich in their potential. Our cozy, homelike environment, and the open setting of our child care programs, allows children to securely and safely explore toys, games, and creative material. Through discovery and play experiences, and with the guidance of our well-trained teaching staff, children are exposed to situations that stimulate their curiosity, initiative, and independence; promote their self-esteem and problem-solving capabilities; and encourage social interaction with, and respect for others. Toys and creative materials are changed daily by our educators and are set-up in a manner that invites and challenges the children. The environment itself acts as a “third teacher” since children learn best through their natural exploration, imagination, inquiry, and play. A healthy balance of indoor and outdoor play is provided daily to promote growth in all areas of the children’s development. When the weather does not allow for outdoor play, active indoor play opportunities are set-up and closely monitored by staff. Quiet areas are always accessible to children who desire more peaceful activities, such as looking through books or working on puzzles. A daily rest period is provided where children are encouraged to sleep/rest/engage in quiet activities, in accordance with their individual needs. Children’s art work, and photos documenting their daycare experiences, are displayed in the programs, stairway, and hallways to help promote their self-awareness, to encourage pride in their accomplishments, and to build self-confidence in their abilities.
Our teachers’ role model polite language and positive social interactions. When children engage physically (push-pull situation), teachers provide children with the words to use to communicate their needs and negotiate the situation. This strategy encourages our children to become socially competent, giving them the ability to verbally express themselves, to communicate their feelings, and promotes their capacity to self-regulate. Our children learn healthy hygiene routines and self-help skills enabling them to become more independent as they grow. Educators instruct the children in proper toileting procedures, when-to and how-to wash and dry their hands, and provide hand-over-hand lessons in hand washing until children are able to do this on their own. When children are ready, and show an interest in learning to use the toilet, our teachers work closely with our families to facilitate this transition through consistency in routine and approach. Children gradually learn to dress themselves for outdoor play, and gain an understanding of what clothes are needed according to the weather/season. Good nutrition and a well-balanced diet are important for children’s physical and cognitive growth, as well as their emotional wellbeing. With this in mind our certified on-site cooks provide exceptionally nutritious, high quality meals, with lots of fresh fruit, and no processed foods. Even our bread is made on-site with no preservatives added!
From time to time, we may require support from a variety of community partners to further enhance the services we offer to our families. This support may come from specialized services such as Children’s Integration and Support Services; it could be in the form of an additional staff person in a program; a family centered planning meeting to work out strategies; professional resources; and observations and discussions between our staff and other professionals. If we believe that we could better meet the needs of your child through the assistance of support services, we will first discuss this with you and seek your consent before accessing these services.
Our educators and supervisors, monitor and continually reflect on all aspects of our children’s programs to ensure the highest quality standards are maintained. Teachers/volunteers/students share their thoughts with their team members daily and consider new ideas/challenges/approaches during their regular team meetings. Volunteers, students and new staff members are assigned specific staff members to train, coached and mentor them.