St. Thomas' Day Care promotes the health, safety, and general well-being for all children and staff at our Centre. Our day incorporates indoor and outdoor play experiences, quiet and active play, rest time, and healthy nutrition breaks including two snacks and a hot lunch daily. Safety is our first priority, however, building risk competence is an important part of learning. Children will be invited to take safe reasonable risks.
The foundation for well-being, important for life-long health and wellbeing is established in the early years. Nurturing children's physical and emotional well-being is of utmost importance.
This Centre provides and supports early learning experiences, recognizing the importance of the Four Foundations of Learning as outlined in the How Does Learning Happen? document available at www.ontario.ca/edu.
Belonging: Every child has a sense of belonging when he or she is connected to others and contributes to their world. St. Thomas' Day Care cultivates authentic, caring relationships and connections to create a sense of belonging among and between children, adults and the world around them. Thoughtfulness and caring empathy is fostered by listening to children and by encouraging them to listen to others and share ideas.
Parents are recognized as partners: Parents know their children best and are their child's first teacher. Positive relationships with families lead to secure relationships with children. We celebrate all families and their uniqueness. Parents are encouraged to visit and observe when possible, and to ask for clarification about our program and/or their child's development at any time.
Well-Being: This Centre nurtures children's healthy development and supports their growing sense of self. Daily health checks are conducted upon arrival to the Centre. Healthy eating is encouraged and promoted through a menu offering varied food choices from every food group. Locally available fresh fruits and vegetables are served when in season. Children are encouraged to talk about their feelings fostering awareness of feeling and emotion. Emotional health is supported by recognizing and responding to children's needs.
Engagement: Every Child is an active and engaged learner who explores the world with body, mind and senses. We provide environments and experiences to engage children in activities, creative and meaningful exploration, play and inquiry. Active play has physical benefits, but also enhances focus and attention, problem solving skills and independence. Consistency and developmentally appropriate limits and practices are developed to best support learning and development.
Expression: St. Thomas' Day Care strives to foster communication and expression in all forms. Children are encouraged to interact and communicate in a positive way and to develop self-regulatory skills. Inquiry and exploration is fostered by supporting child initiated and adult supported experiences in a positive learning environment.
We provide an environment rich with opportunity for exploration and learning opportunities discovered through play. In partnership with families and children, we provide a child-centred emergent curriculum which fosters development through play encouraging children to reach their fullest potential - physically, emotionally and socially.
Our environments and activities are inspired by the observed interests of the children and are designed to promote and support:
Intentional spaces filled with recycled loose parts, blocks, art materials, dramatic play props, books, sensory experiences and more provide open ended experiences.