GENERAL PROGRAM QUESTIONS
What is your philosophy of early childhood education?
Happy Ladybug Early Learning Center incorporates elements of cognitive and play-based Learning to meet the children’s needs. We believe purposeful play and developmentally appropriate practices, in a warm, loving and caring environment, are very important for children’s healthy development. Both approaches emphasize the importance of play in a child’s intellectual, social, emotional and physical development. During a typical day children will engage in both structured and unstructured periods allowing children to learn at their own pace. Children are encouraged to make choices throughout the day to practice decision making. They are actively involved in activities which include foundations of math, science, social studies, creative art, language arts, music, movement and dramatic play.
What are the credentials of your teachers?
Primary teachers have either a degree in early childhood education or have a combination of college coursework, Colorado Department of Early Childhood (CDEC) approved courses and/or professional development provided by CDEC. Primary teachers also have experience working with young children in licensed child care centers.
Secondary teachers might also have a degree or taken classes in Early Childhood Education but if not, Happy Ladybug ELC encourages and pays for their college courses and professional development courses.
All of our teachers must complete 15 hours of professional development each year, no matter what their degree or experience is.
How do you prevent high teacher turnover?
First and foremost, we appreciate the hard work that our teachers do and celebrate their successes and milestones. We also compensate our staff more than what other programs might. We offer generous paid time off, paid holidays, as well as health, vision and dental insurance.
How often do you increase tuition rates?
Every October to reflect the market prices and the increased costs of goods.
Is food included in the tuition?
Yes! We strive to offer healthy food to our children. Therefore, we prepare our breakfast and snacks in house using mostly natural ingredients and avoid sugar, colors, fillers and highly processed food. We deliver our lunches from a company who specifically caters to early learning centers and follows CACFP meal standards. Wholesome, healthy, balanced and made-from-scratch meals are included in the tuition.
What type of food do you offer and are you able to accommodate specific dietary needs?
Our meals include a lot of vegetables, fruits and whole grains. You can see our menu on the Nutrition tab of the website. We will work to accommodate most dietary needs, but might not be able to accommodate all, please reach out with questions.
How do you communicate with families?
We use an app called Brightwheel. Parents receive daily updates on their child’s day including activities of the day, activity goals, meals served and potty times. The app also allows teachers to send real time photos and videos. There is also a messaging feature. Our teachers always welcome questions during drop off and pick-up. If the discussion requires more time and focused attention, we will set up time to meet outside of the classroom.
When do you start solid food with infants and do you provide the food?
Starting infants with solid food is a decision that every family makes on their own schedule. When you are ready to start solid foods at school, we ask that you send foods based on what you have tried at home. Once your child has tried all of the foods that you serve at home, we can switch to school provided meals during the day.
How often do you communicate with parents and how do I know when my child ate and how long he napped?
Brightwheel app provides real time updates on meals, diaper changes and nap times. Infant diapers are changed a minimum of every 2 hours and in between if the child’s diaper is too wet or poopy.
How do you store breast milk and formula? When do you discard them?
The infant classroom has a fridge for storage of bottles and food. Parents provide ready measured/made bottles for each day labeled with the child’s name and specifically marked if it is breast milk. We do have some storage space for frozen breastmilk in the case that we need an extra bottle one day. Breastmilk and formula must be consumed within 1 hour of warming, or it must be dumped.
How do kids transition from the infant to toddler room?
Children transition from the infant room to the toddler room when they are around 12 months of age AND walking. We communicate with parents to let them know how to best prepare for this transition a couple of months before it will take place, and decide a date based on other milestones.
How do kids transition from 2 naps to 1 nap?
When infants transition to a toddler room, we have well prepared them for one nap a day in the infant room. When a child is coming in from outside of HLB there tends to be more of a transition, but we will let the children take a 10 minute power nap if needed to get them through. We do try to eliminate this as soon as the child is able.
When does potty training begin? How do you facilitate potty training?
Potty training begins in classrooms when a child is 2. We will start introducing sitting on the toilet with each diaper change. Once we see more signs of readiness here, we will communicate with the family to see when it makes sense for you all to switch to underwear and formally potty train. Signs of readiness include: extended periods of dry diapers, verbalizing needs, ability to dress/undress themselves, and others.
What does a day look like in preschool classrooms?
Happy Ladybug uses the Colorado Department of Education’s Early Learning and Developmental Guidelines for planning daily activities. Every lesson plan has a purpose to make sure the activities are fun, engaging, adaptable and age-appropriate to prepare our students to:
- Develop a positive self-concept
- Respect for the individuality and rights of others
- Positive interactions with peers and adults
- Acceptance, understanding and expression of both positive and negative feelings
- Growth of independence and self-sufficiency
- Growth of creative thinking and problem solving
- Cognitive growth and development
- Emergent literacy development
- Small and large muscle development
Will my child be ready for Kindergarten when he/she graduates?
Yes, our goal is to make sure your child is ready to step into the Kindergarten classroom with the social and emotional tools to make them successful. They will be confident individuals knowing how to listen to the teachers, take turns, engage with peers in an acceptable manner, express emotions and their needs, and be ready to learn. They will have foundations of math, science, social studies, creative art and language arts.