Posted 10/05/2018 6:15:55 PM by Oliver Lam
Although May is Child Care Appreciation Month in B.C., we can all agree that the amazing individuals, teams and organizations who provide care for children throughout the province deserve appreciation all year round. Closer to home, the YMCA is fortunate to have so many individuals who contribute to our licensed early learning programs and licensed school age before and after school Kids Club child care program.
The YMCA has been providing child care to families and communities for over 45 years. In 2017, through the commitment and passion of our teams, the YMCA Child Care program provided quality care and valuable skill development to nearly 2,000 kids—now that is certainly worth celebrating. Beyond impressive numbers, there are many other aspects of the YMCA Child Care program that deserve a spotlight:
A curriculum focused on the big picture
The YMCA Early Learning programs feature our "Playing to Learn" curriculum, which focuses on small group, play-based and inquiry programming that allows children to take ownership of their own learning, identify their interests and acquire the skills needed to reach their full potential. This curriculum aligns with the BC Ministry of Education Early Learning Framework and introduces children to developmentally appropriate play experiences that will set them up for success in school.
Our "YMCA A Place to Connect" curriculum is implemented in our before and after school Kids Club Child Care program. This particular approach to learning focuses on engaging children through fun activities and provides them with the opportunity to plan and lead the activities themselves. Another major component is that it aims to create a positive social environment where children participate in physical activity for a minimum of 60 minutes per day.
Nurturing both the mind and body
YMCA's Child Care program realizes the importance of keeping kids moving, which is why staff take advantage of the outdoor spaces that exist in all YMCA Early Learning and Kids Club child care centres and bring the children on a fun-filled outrips from time to time. But, staying active is not the only way our child care teams develop healthy kids. Making sure kids are eating healthy and nutritious foods plays a big part as well.
Both YMCA Early Learning Centres and Kids Clubs offer a variety of nutritious snacks that are prepared on-site. The Y follows Canada's Food Guide to ensure your child receives a well-balanced snack.
A family centred approach to care
At the YMCA child care is never viewed as a one-way street. Our child care teams know that families are a huge part of the equation, which is why they involve, consult and update families, parents, caregivers and guardians as much as possible as it relates to the development and needs of the children. One of the many goals of the Y's Child Care program is to support families by providing information, resources and programs that will assist them in their role as parents and help sustain a healthy family lifestyle. When it comes to providing children with the quality care they deserve, it truly is a team effort!