Parent Handbook

Inquiring Minds Daycare

(660) 988-4291 | brittney.l.brownell@gmail.com | www.inquiringmindsdaycare.com

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Welcome to Inquiring Minds Daycare!

Where I strive for Playful Inspiration for Growing Minds.

The purpose of this Parent Handbook is to outline the policies and procedures under which we operate as an in-home child care provider.

State Licensing Requirements

Inquiring Minds Daycare complies with all applicable licensing regulations and standards for Missouri. These standards relate to our home, staff, health and safety procedures, nutrition, care giver to child ratios, and record keeping. I believe that these standards are in the best interest of the children. A copy of the Missouri State Licensing Rules for Family Daycare Homes is available for your review upon request.

Care Definitions

Full time childcare: Monday-Friday anytime between the hours of 7:15am and 5:30pm
Part time childcare: Limited days of the week anytime between the hours of 7:15am and 5:30pm up to 10.5 hours per day.
Half day childcare: (7:15am – 12:30pm) or (12:30pm – 5:30pm) Up to 5 hours per day.
Infant: 0 to 24 months old/2 years old
Toddler/Preschooler: 2 and 5 years old

Rates

Infant (0-24 months)

  • Full Time: $175 / week (up to 55 hrs/week-10.25 hrs/day)
  • Half Day Time: $120 / week (up to 27.5 hrs/week)
  • Part Time:
    • Drop-In Care: $10 for 1-4 hours then reverts to the 8 hour rate.
    • 1-2 Day per week: $50 / 10 hours
    • 3-4 Days per week: $160 / week
    • Weekend: $10 / hour for 1-4 hours then reverts to the 10 hour rate.

Toddler/Preschooler (2-5 years)

  • Full Time: $150 / week (up to 55 hours/week-10.25 hrs/day)
  • Half Day Time: $100 / week (up to 27.5 hrs/week)
  • Part Time:
    • Drop-In Care: $10 for 1-4 hours then reverts to the 10 hour rate.
    • 1-2 Day per week: $50 /10 hours
    • 3-4 Days per week: $130 / week
    • Weekend: $10 / hour for 1-4 hours then reverts to the 10 hour rate.

Hours of Operation

Week: 7:15 AM – 5:30 PM

Evenings: 6:00 PM – 11:00 PM

Weekends: 7:15 AM – 5:30 PM or 5:30 PM – 11:00 PM

Depending on the parent’s needs, Inquiring Minds Daycare will accept early arrival or late departure as part of the daycare/parental agreement. Late fees will apply if pick-up is beyond agreed pick-up time.

The daycare is closed during the holidays listed below.

Late Pickup/Payment Policy

  • Late Payment: $10 for each day payment is late.
    • After the first week, care will be declined until payment is received.
    • After two weeks of non-payment, the contract will be terminated and a claim submitted to a collection agency.
  • Late Pick-Up: $1 for every minute beyond agreed upon pick-up time.

Please be courteous and arrive on time. After hours is time with our family.

Holidays

  • New Year’s Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving
  • Day after Thanksgiving
  • Christmas Eve
  • Christmas Day
  • Day after Christmas
  • New Year’s Eve

Note: If the holiday falls on a Saturday daycare will be closed the Friday before. If the holiday falls on a Sunday daycare will be closed the Monday after.

Sick/Personal Days

As strong as my immune system has become over the years, I unfortunately still get sick from time to time. Because of this I allot myself 5 sick/personal days per year. I also use these days for my continuing education classes (CPR, Pediatric First Aid, etc) in order to keep my care of your child(ren) to professional standards. Of course I will give you as much of an advance notice as possible.

Parents/Guardians receive 5 free sick/personal days per calendar year. These can be used at your discretion. Subsequent absences will be charged at the contracted rate.

Drop-in care does not qualify for “free” days.

Vacations

Inquiring Minds Daycare is allotted 10 days of vacation each year. The dates of my vacation will be posted at least two weeks in advance. Regular payment rates apply for our vacations, your vacations, weeks with holidays, and provider’s sick/personal days.

Working with exposure to many families and especially children, it is expected that I will become ill occasionally. Therefore, I reserve the option to take five (6) paid sick/personal days also if I have death of immediate family member per calendar year. I will not take these days unless I am genuinely ill or death in the family, and I will always attempt to give as much notice as possible when I am forced to close my home due to illness or injury to a family member or myself. If I use one of 6 personal/sick days for myself for personal time needed off for going to my own personal appointments, I will give you at least 2 weeks’ notice if all possible . Also, in the event that one of my own family members is mildly ill, I will also give you as much notice as possible to allow you to decide if you want to risk exposure to your child. These days will not count toward the paid sick days since I will still be available to care for your child.

Note: Parents are responsible for finding back-up care for their children during provider vacations, holidays, and sick/personal days resulting in the daycare closing. In order to provide my family with a reliable income, I cannot offer discount for days when your child is unable to attend due to his/her illness or vacation.

Maternity Leave

If you will be taking maternity leave, I first want to say congratulations on your new addition! You have a few options.

  1. Continue bringing your first child for our contracted time at your contracted rate.
  2. Drop down to a part time space at the part time rate for your first child. Your current contact will be updated with the new agreement.
  3. You can keep your first child home with you. In order to hold your space during your leave, you will need to pay ½ your current contracted rate. Your current contact will be updated with the new agreement.
  4. I will be sad if you choose this option but you can give me your 2 week notice of termination.

If you decide to bring Baby #2, a new contract for both children will be created.

Child’s Absences and/or Vacations

If your child will not be attending daycare due to illness or other, please let me know as soon as possible so the day’s activities won’t be held up waiting for your child to arrive. Also, I need to know how many children I need to prepare meals for. You will receive up to 5 free days per year for illness or vacation. Beyond those days, no discounts will be given for your child’s absences due to illness or vacations. If your child will not be attending daycare for whatever reason, you are still required to pay.

Payment Policy/Attendance

Option One: Payment is due on Friday of each week prior to the first day of the week attending daycare. If payment is received after Monday of each week, a $10 late fee will be charged.

Option Two: Payment is due every 2 weeks on Friday prior to the first day of the week attending daycare.

Option Three: Payment is due on the 1st of the month for the entire month’s tuition.

Drop-In Care: Payment is due at drop off. If care is planned in advance, you will need to pay in advance to guarantee the spot for the day needed. If you do not show, you will not be refunded as I could not fill the space due to holding it for you.

Payment is done prior to care and to hold your child’s space, payment must be paid whether your child attends or not. Payment is based on contract, not attendance.

Unfortunately, I cannot switch around your child’s scheduled days of enrollment on an occasional or semi-occasional basis. In other words, your days contracted are your days and cannot be altered on a weekly basis. If you feel you need and/or want a more flexible schedule then you may want to consider adding days or going to full time. We can discuss options based on your needs. However, keep in mind you can also pay for extra days on an as needed basis for the rates of our drop-in or daily rates.

Termination Policy

If you will no longer be needing my childcare services, 2 weeks advance notice needs to be given. Whenever possible even more notice is better. This helps me tremendously. Reason being, unlike childcare centers Inquiring Minds Daycare can only take 4 children. So when I am full I am are forced to say NO to all incoming requests for childcare. If I have advance notice of discontinuation of needed services then it is possible for me make future arrangements with new family’s inquiring about daycare for their child. This helps to keep my open spots fluctuation to a minimum, and helps me be able to focus more on being the best childcare provider I can be, instead of worrying about “the bills”, and putting food on the table.

Arrival and Departure

Please send your child clean, dressed (no pajamas, unless you don’t mind your child wearing their pajamas all day), fed and ready for the day, as well as all of your child’s necessary supplies needed for that day’s care. Please make your goodbye brief (no more than a couple minutes): the longer you prolong departure the harder it gets for both parent and especially for your child. Never leave without telling your child goodbye. Please be in control of your child during drop-off and pick-up times. No one other than the parent or person designated by you will be allowed to pick up your child without advanced written permission indicating the person’s name and relationship to your child. If there is a court order keeping one parent away from the child, we must have a written note from the custodial parent in our file to that effect. Otherwise, we cannot prevent the non-custodial parent from picking up the child.

Supplies Needed at Daycare

Parents are responsible for supplying the following items:

  • Diapers/Pull-ups
  • Wipes
  • Diaper creams
  • Tooth brush
  • Weather appropriate clothes
  • A change of clothes or two
  • Jacket
  • Shoes that lace-up or Velcro and/or stay on feet (no flip-flops please)
  • Pacifier (if needed)
  • Wet Bag for soiled diapers if you cloth diaper
  • Swimsuit (for summer)

*I supply and apply sunscreen every day to any child playing outside.

**For an extra $5 per week, I will provide wipes and my Amazing Cream for diaper rashes, cuts, and any other skin ailments.

For the older children sleeping on a matt:

  • A crib sheet (optional)
  • A blanket
  • A pillow
  • If necessary, a comfort object for rest-time and anything else your child may need.

Your child’s crib sheet, blanket, and pillow should be taken home every Friday, washed and retuned to daycare the following Monday. There is a good possibility your child will get dirty throughout the day because of food, paint, markers, dirt, bubbles, etc. So please dress your child accordingly for play. I am not responsible for replacing stained or soiled clothing. I suggest that you write your child’s name on the tags of their clothing (especially socks and underwear) in order to prevent any clothing mix-ups.

Note: Please periodically check your child’s cubby to make sure they still have all of their necessary items needed at daycare. Furthermore, as the weather changes throughout the year, so do your child’s items needed at daycare. I greatly appreciate your adherence to this subject, as it helps the children’s day run more smoothly to have all of his or her necessary belongings with them at daycare. This way I can care for your child in the best possible way.

Art and Craft Supplies

Although not required, Inquiring Minds Daycare will greatly appreciate your assistance with providing art and craft supplies. I keep our supplies as stocked as possible for learning activities, however, I do so out of my own funds. Donations of the below supplies can go a long way to helping your child learn and grow:

  • Inquiring Minds - Painting and Crafts 1Paper plates
  • Sequins
  • Poof Balls/Pom Poms
  • Cotton Balls
  • Brown or White Paper Bags
  • Crayons
  • Washable Markers
  • Googly Eyes
  • Beads
  • Buttons
  • Washable Paints (acrylic or watercolor)
  • Paint Brushes
  • Dry Erase Markers (for the easel)
  • Foam Sheets and/or Shapes
  • Colored Chalk (Sidewalk and easel)
  • Glitter
  • Glue (sticks and/or bottle)
  • Craft Paper

Diaper Policy

It is the parent’s responsibility to provide diapers, wipes, and diaper cream for your child. It is also the parent’s responsibility to check periodically to see if or when your child needs more diapers, wipes, and cream. Each child has his or her own clearly labeled bin for personal items. Diapers are checked frequently and changed every three hours, or more often. Diapers containing #2 are changed immediately. The diaper changing table is cleaned and disinfected between each diaper change and hand washing of childcare provider and child is performed after each diaper change.

**For an extra $5 per week, I will provide wipes and my Amazing Cream for diaper rashes, cuts, and any other skin ailments.

Toilet Training

I am more than happy to encourage potty training as long as the child is ready (typically between 2 and 3 years old). The initial start needs to be done at home for at least two weeks with success before it can be effectively started at daycare. Parents will be required to supply pull-ups and wipes. Communication between parents and myself is imperative for a successful transition from diapers to toilet.

Open Door Policy

Please feel free to come and go at any time throughout the day to visit your child. However, please keep in mind that in doing so it can prove to be disruptive to the other children in the care of Inquiring Minds Daycare. During times like these the other children have a hard time listening and following our directions. If you or any other part of your family i.e. (grandparents, etc) would like to come and visit or play with the child for an extended period of time, please take the child in question out of the daycare, to places such as your home, a park or on a walk, etc. After which, feel free to bring the child back to daycare.

Health Matters

For the health and safety of your child and all of the children in our daycare, please do not bring your child to daycare sick. In which case I in turn may become sick making it difficult to care for the children at the high standards that I have set for myself. I can only care for children with mild cold like symptoms that are otherwise feeling and acting well. Mild cold like symptoms are clear runny nose, slight cough, and a slight (less than 100oF) or no fever. If you are not sure if your child should be brought to daycare, then please call and check with us. If a child becomes ill during daycare hours the parents will be contacted to pick up their child. Parents need to pick up their children within one hour of being notified. If parents are not available, the emergency contact person will be notified.

Note: State regulations mandate the ill child must be kept isolated from the other children until the parent(s) arrive. We will stay in close proximity of your child and provide any and all care necessary.

Once the child is removed from daycare due to illness, they may not return to daycare until symptoms requiring removal are no longer present. The child must also be void of any contagious disease, unless accompanied by a doctor’s note stating the illness in question is not contagious, and the child is otherwise feeling well enough to participate in our daily schedule.

Guidelines for Children Requiring Exclusion from Daycare

A child with any of the following illnesses must be completely free of any symptoms before returning to daycare. If the child is taking antibiotics for an illness, the child may return to daycare after the initial 24 hours of beginning antibiotics as long as he or she has a slight to no fever (under 100oF), no longer contagious, and is otherwise feeling well enough to participate in our daily schedule.

Signs of illness include the following:

  • Unusual lethargy
  • Irritability
  • Persistent crying for no reason
  • Green Nasal Mucus
  • Strong persistent Cough
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting more than once
  • Mouth sores
  • Rashes (note from doctor stating non-contagious is ok)
  • Pink eye
  • Chicken pox
  • Mumps
  • Measles
  • Roseola
  • Hepatitis A
  • Impetigo
  • Head Lice or Bed Bugs
  • Ringworm
  • Scabies
  • Strep throat
  • Scarlet fever
  • Tuberculosis
  • Shingles
  • Yellowish skin or eyes
  • Infected skin patch(es) – crusty, bright yellow, dry or gummy areas
  • Grey or white stool
  • Headache with a stiff neck
  • Severe itching of the body or scalp or scratching of the scalp. These may be symptoms of lice or scabies.
  • Any other contagious disease or rash

Any child with a fever of 100o or above, orally (in the mouth), or axillary (under the arm), may not attend daycare. State law requires that I notify parents of children who have been exposed to certain contagious diseases. Please notify me if your child becomes infected, so a note can be posted.

Note: A fever in and of itself is not all bad (given that it is not too high). A fever is your body’s natural way of trying to protect itself against whatever virus or bacteria is attacking it. Illnesses that cause fevers cannot live in our bodies’ abnormally hot environment. However, a fever is an obvious indicator that the child is sick and possibly contagious, therefore requiring exclusion from daycare.

Head Lice and Bed Bugs

If your child(ren) or someone in your house has head lice, you need to call me as early as possible so I can notify other families and take necessary steps to treat my daycare/home. A child who I see with head lice will be sent home immediately. You will need to give your child a treatment for the lice. I recommend treating your home and car with lice spray, vacuum and wash anything soft. If items can’t be washed, you should place those items in a closed bag for at least 2 weeks. The hair treatment will need to be reapplied in 1 week. If your child returns, is checked and still has head lice, they are NOT ALLOWED to return to daycare until they are “bug and egg (nit)” free.

After a known case of head lice, I will perform head checks on all the children for 2 weeks when entering daycare to make sure none of the other children have contracted lice. Inquiring Minds Daycare has the right to immediate termination of childcare if head lice reoccur over and over on the same child due to the possibility of contamination throughout the daycare. If I am forced to close my daycare for decontamination treatment, the day off will be applied to my 5 paid sick days per calendar year.

Medication

At Inquiring Minds Daycare will not give medications to the children without a signed consent form. If your child needs to be medicated in order to get through the day, and be able to comfortably participate in classroom activities, then it is quite possible he or she may be too sick to attend daycare. I will, however, give certain doctor prescribed medications to the children, of course given that they are no longer contagious, and only if the medication consent form has been signed.

In order to administer medications, all medicines must be clearly labeled with child’s name, date, physicians name (if applicable) and instructions for administration including times and amounts for dosages as written by the parent or physician. Medications must be in their original container.

Examples of these would be; antibiotics for ear infections etc and Tylenol for teething or pain associated with bumps or bruises (not to bring down a fever). If you’re not sure if I will administer a certain medication or not, please feel free to ask.

Immunizations

Unfortunately, I cannot permit your child to be enrolled or attend our daycare without being adequately immunized against preventable childhood illnesses due to state regulations. A record from your physician’s office must be provided.

There are a few exceptions such as: you’ve started the process for immunization accompanied by a schedule. Or if the parent/guardian has placed on file with the daycare administration a statement of exemption.

Cleanliness

I take the well-being of your child very seriously and work hard to provide an environment that is as healthy as possible. I am committed to keeping our home and the children in it as clean as possible, in order to help minimize and/or prevent the spread of germs. Our home is kept clean and disinfected at all times. I thoroughly clean surfaces that children come in close contact with using soap and water, a vinegar cleaning solution or other natural cleaner. The high chairs are cleaned between each use, and the diaper changing tables are cleaned and disinfected between each diaper change. Toys are cleaned and disinfected often, and water-play tables are cleaned and disinfected before being filled with water and carefully supervised when in use. Hand washing is the single most effective practice in preventing the spread of germs. I wash my hands many times throughout the day, as well as the children’s hands before and/or after engaging in a thorough list of activities.

Adults wash their hands:

  • Before beginning work
  • Immediately before handling food or feeding children
  • After using the toilet, helping a child use the toilet or after changing soiled clothing or diapers
  • After coming into contact with any bodily fluid, such as a wet or soiled diaper, runny nose, spit or vomit
  • Whenever hands are visibly dirty
  • After cleaning a child, the room, toys, or bathroom
  • Before giving medication or applying ointment
  • After work

Children wash their hands:

  • Immediately before and after eating
  • After using the toilet or having soiled clothing or diaper changed
  • Before and after using water tables
  • After using play-dough or other substances
  • After playing on the playground
  • Whenever hands are visibly dirty
  • Before going home

Reporting Child Abuse

I am required by law to report any suspected incidents of possible child abuse or neglect. Your child can be questioned by child protective services at any time without your consent.

Medical and Dental Emergency Procedures

Emergency information is kept on file at the daycare. In case of illness or injury this information will be used to notify you or the person designated by you, of your child’s status. If your child is injured while at the daycare, first aid will be administered. If treatment by a doctor is necessary, I will make every effort to contact you or the doctor you have chosen to treat your child.

In all cases, an injury report is completed, and a copy is given to the parents as well as the Department of Social Services. Authorization for emergency treatment must be signed at the time of enrollment to ensure that in the event of an emergency, I can make sure your child receives the necessary emergency treatment he or she needs. It is very important that all emergency contact information is kept up to date and correct. Please inform me immediately of any changes to keep your information current. Parents are responsible for all costs involved in emergency medical treatment, including emergency transportation if required.

Note: In case of a serious accident or sudden illness requiring immediate medical attention, the following procedures will be followed.

  1. A phone call to 911 is made.
  2. Child’s parents (or emergency contacts) are called.
  3. Child is separated from the other children and appropriately cared for.
  4. Parent, provider, or ambulance takes the child and health records to the doctor or hospital.

Evacuation Procedures

Inquiring Minds Daycare has written policies and procedures for dealing with emergencies and natural disasters. Evacuation plans are posted in the daycare. In the unlikely event, the children will be evacuated to an emergency location, and you will be notified as soon as possible. If we need to leave the house, our emergency location of choice is South on N Madison then turn right on NW 69th St to the dead end. A notice will be posted at the daycare with all information on the alternative sight.

TV Viewing

Television viewing is only done during meal prep, no more than a half an hour at a time and is limited to the Disney Jr and Nickelodeon Jr for the younger ones. On occasion, usually only on Fridays, I may pick an appropriate children’s video to watch i.e. (Finding Nemo or Dory, Frozen, Trolls, Up, Little Mermaid, etc). Children are never required to sit and watch TV, and TV is not offered in place of free play or learning activities.

Toys

I have well organized, separate, age appropriate toys for the toddlers and infants. Infants will not be allowed to be around or play with small objects and toys. During the initial adjusting period I encourage your child bring a piece of home with them; a special blanket, toy, or teddy can be very comforting. Photos of family members, neighbors, and pets can be left with us to help remind your child of familiar people if he or she feels lonely during the day. I made a recognition book for our daughter that she loved to flip through. It had photos and names of the people in our lives.

However, please do not bring your child’s toys to daycare except on designated sharing/show and tell days. As much as I try to encourage sharing, this seldom works when it is the child’s own personal toy. It only causes problems between them and the other children. Never send your child to daycare with toy weapons.

Meals/Snacks

Each day I provide two nutritious and well balanced meals and one snack following the USDA Meal Guidelines. I provide morning breakfast at 8:30 – 9:00 AM, lunch at 12:00 – 12:30 PM and afternoon snack at 4:00 PM. Milk is served with all the meals and snacks, and water is offered throughout the day. Juice is limited to once a day at 4 oz mixed with 4 oz water. I also provide baby food for infants in the form of steamed vegetables or soft fruits. Unless requested to puree, I follow the concepts of Baby Lead Weaning when introducing table foods.

On this site you will find a menu, showing an example of the different types of food we serve throughout any given week. The meals and snacks for each week constantly vary in order to ensure the children receive a well-balanced diet. There may be times when the menu may be adjusted should the family have a large meal the night before and leftovers are served.

The children are offered the food, but they will not be forced to eat. It is my goal to offer nutritious meals and snacks to the children in my care, as nutrition is a vital part of a child’s health and development. Children need to eat well-balanced meals in order to meet his or her daily energy needs and to help them build a strong body and mind. I know that the good food habits a child develops will help them prevent cavities, iron deficiency, anemia, and obesity, etc – all common nutritional problems in young children.

Special Diets

If your child has any particular dietary needs resulting from being a vegetarian, having allergies, religious beliefs, non-religious beliefs, etc, then I must be informed and, when applicable, given a doctor’s note stating to the fact.

Learning and Fun

For ages 0 through 5, I will offer a structured preschool curriculum. I am still in the process of researching the best fit for us. These are professionally planned preschool curriculum designed to be used in childcare homes and centers. I am looking for an option that fulfills the Head Start Domain Elements, Standards, and Indicator Guidelines and is consistent with the National Association for the Education of Young Children Guidelines for curriculum content that is also fun for both the children and caregivers.

Ongoing learning activities are offered Monday through Friday and is both entertaining and educational. Your child will enjoy activities ranging from art and craft projects to games, songs, finger plays, storytelling, creative dramatics, exercises, science, shapes, numbers, colors, alphabet, and much more through various monthly themes. Some of these projects will be taken home to share with you, and others will be group activities that you can ask about. We know that children learn best by “doing”. Therefore, the activities the children participate in are developmentally appropriate, concrete, hands-on, and most of all fun, because we believe that learning is an exciting experience.

For ages 24 months and younger I work on and with the following: throughout each day we practice on large and small motor skills by reaching, grasping, rolling, sitting, crawling, standing, walking, climbing, throwing, catching, kicking, cooing and talking; whichever developmental stage your child happens to be in at the time. Infants and toddlers learn through play by utilizing flash cards, books, numbers, shapes, colors, the alphabet, stacking blocks, puppets, age-appropriate toys, and much more. I encourage participation, but the child will not be forced to participate.

Most importantly, my goal is to make learning for all ages fun, and non-intimidating. It is my hope that both you and your child will be as enthusiastic as I am about my program.

Activities

I know that children also learn through play; because of this, I do not underestimate its importance on a growing child’s mind, body and spirit. Therefore, the children under my care receive lots of both free-play and structured-play throughout each day. During structured-play I primarily have only one group of toys or activity out at a time in order to allow the children to concentrate fully on each thing they do.

Age appropriate activities will be scheduled with the flexibility allowed to respond to the needs of each individual child and their various ages. Activities that we and the children participate in, include, but are not limited to the following:

Indoor activities include: books and story-time, circle-time, tumbling exercises, music and dancing, dress up, play food, interactive stuffed animals, cars/trucks/planes, arts and crafts, puzzles, flash cards, animals/dinosaurs, trains, musical instruments, balls, baby dolls, various learning toys, various games, blocks, beads and string, song games, play dough, coloring, sing along story books, painting, science, board games, puppets, Simon-says, singing, rice play, water play, and anything else our imaginations can come up with.

Outdoor activities include: climbing, sliding, jumping, running, balls, jump rope, racing, water balloons, parachute, catch, bubbles, follow the leader, squirt bottles, ride-on toys, wagons, tunnels, safe water toys, various games, water play, painting, neighborhood walks, exploring nature/weather, soccer, and yes falling. During the summer months (June, July and August) we allow for more outdoor activities and creative art projects. Weather permitting, we play outdoors every day.

As you know, children play hard and will get some bumps and bruises from time to time. I do my best to limit the amount of times this occurs, with constant supervision and watchful eyes. Due to the safe environment/toys I have gathered for my daycare, i hope to prevent any injuries before they can happen.

Nap Time

The infants sleep in pack-n-plays or a bassinet and the toddlers sleep on mats. My goal is to have the two different age groups (24 months and older, younger than 24 months) sleeping on the same afternoon nap schedule. Nap time for children 18 months and older is during the time between 1:00 PM and 3:30 PM each day. Typically children 18 months and younger will take a morning nap as well, moving toward a one nap a day schedule between 12 and 18 months. Typically children 6 months and younger may need a third nap during the day, which can be incorporated into their late afternoon schedule. The State of Missouri requires that all children under the age of 5 to have at least a two hour rest period every day. No child will ever be forced to sleep, however they are encouraged to remain quiet and on their mat during this time. For the older, toddler age children, sleeping on mats, please send a crib sheet, pillow, and blanket that can be kept at the daycare for your child.

Daily Schedule

This schedule is meant to give you an idea of your child’s day. Actual times and activities may vary depending on time of the year, weather, age and temperament of the children. Age appropriate activities are scheduled with the flexibility allowed to respond to the needs of each individual child and their various ages.

Older Toddler/Preschooler (24 months and older)

Time

Activity Description

7:15 – 8:30 AM

Arrival & Free Play Greetings & free exploration of play areas.
8:15 – 8:30 AM Diaper Checks & Bathroom Children will have diaper changed, use bathroom and wash hands
8:30 – 9:00 AM Breakfast

Children will eat breakfast, clean their plates and wash up.

9:00 – 9:30 AM

Circle Time Morning stretches, calendar, weather, music and movement, shapes and colors, monthly word and introduction to daily theme.

9:30 – 9:45 AM

Story Time

We will read 2 books related to the monthly theme.

9:45 – 10:00 AM Diaper Checks & Bathroom

Children will have diaper changed, use bathroom and wash hands

9:45 – 10:30 AM

Activity Time Arts & Crafts, Music, Song & Dance, Tumbling, Various Learning Games. We’ll follow our learning curriculum.

10:30 – 11:30 AM

Spring/Summer/Fall: Outside Play Time

Winter: Inside Free Play (may go outside in mild weather)

Children will release energy in our backyard playground.

11:30 – 11:45 AM Diaper Checks & Bathroom

Children will have diaper changed, use bathroom and wash hands

11:45 – 12:45 AM

Lunch Children will eat lunch, clean their plates and wash up.
12:45 – 1:00 PM Diaper Checks & Bathroom Children will have diaper changed, use bathroom and wash hands
1:00 – 3:30 PM Nap Time / Quiet Time

Children must remain in their cots/playpens. If a child refuses to nap he/she may read books and have toys quietly in their cot.

3:30 – 3:45 PM

Diaper Checks & Bathroom Children will have diaper changed, use bathroom and wash hands
3:30 – 4:00 PM Free Play Free exploration of play areas.
4:00 – 4:30 PM Snack

Children will eat a snack, clean their plates and wash up

4:30 – 5:30 PM Spring/Summer/Fall: Outside Play Time

Winter: Inside Free Play (may go outside in mild weather)

Children will release energy in our backyard playground. If inside, color, play-dough, free play.

Infant/Young Toddler (younger than 24 months)

Throughout each day we practice on reaching, grasping, rolling, sitting, crawling, standing, walking, climbing, throwing, catching, kicking, cooing and talking; whichever developmental stage your child happens to be in at the time. For a younger child still taking two to three naps a day, additional naps will be incorporated into their schedule.

Infant (3 to 6 months)

Babies will receive cuddles, love, and affection and they’ll eat, poop, and sleep.

Brightwheel & Parent Communication

Brightwheel allows me to connect with parents. Makes sign in-out easy, I can share photos, notes, and information about your child’s day. It is free for you to download on your smart phone.

Behavior Management & Discipline

I believe that the discipline of a child is achieved through patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement. I also try and teach the children in our care manners, kindness and to be respectful to others. One of the ways in which I do this is by the example I, as provider, set. I understand that our actions and reactions speak much louder than our words. The children are explained the rules of the daycare frequently, so they know what’s expected of them. Once a child is old enough to understand the rules and disobeys them by, exhibiting inappropriate behavior (hitting, aggression, etc), hurts others, or property, the following developmentally appropriate guidance techniques will be used. These techniques are as follows:

  1. Positive Reinforcement: The child will be encouraged when he or she is demonstrating acceptable behavior.
  2. Redirection: The child is redirected to another activity and given an opportunity to try again at another time.
  3. Deep Breathing Techniques: When the child is worked up, crying, or otherwise upset, I will sit with the child and instruct them to breathe deeply in and out. This may be done in conjunction with time-out.
  4. Time-Out: The child is separated from the group for an age appropriate amount of time (one minute per one year of age). This technique is only used when a child repeatedly will not follow my directions or listen to my words, is exhibiting temper tantrum type behavior, or hurting one’s self, others or equipment. When the child shows that he or she is ready to demonstrate acceptable behavior, they are encouraged to join the rest of the group to try again.
  5. Last Resort: When a child’s behavior is continually upsetting or dangerous to others, a conference will be called with the parents. If the problems cannot be resolved, arrangements will have to be made for the child to go elsewhere for care.

Note: Sometimes if both a parent and a provider are both in the same area (examples would be during drop-off and pick-up times) a child may forget the rules or test the boundaries. Please help show your child that you respect me and my family, the rules of our house, and our property by reminding them that the rules still apply when you are around. I will also remind them of the rules and correct them if needed.

What Is Ask of the Children

  1. All food and drinks must be kept in the kitchen area.
  2. No playing in the bathroom.
  3. No coloring on anything but paper.
  4. Name calling and foul language or yelling is not allowed.
  5. No hitting, kicking, pushing, pinching, biting, spitting or pulling hair.
  6. No pulling or picking of plants, grass, trees, or flowers.
  7. No picking-up, pulling, poking or squeezing of babies.
  8. All kitchen and bathroom cupboards are off limits to daycare children.
  9. Upstairs bedrooms are off limits to daycare children.
  10. Take turns and share.
  11. Help clean up.
  12. Laugh, smile, play, and be happy.

Communication

So I can provide the best possible care, please feel free to communicate any needs, wants and/or concerns regarding your child. It is only through good parent/provider interaction that good quality nurturing care can be achieved. I will provide the same respect by giving you recaps of the day’s events, any behavioral issues we’ve been seeing and any health-related issues during the day.

Miscellaneous

  • Here at Inquiring Minds Daycare I do not transport any child by car or any moving vehicle, unless a medical emergency requires me to do so.
  • Understand that your child may be included in classroom evaluations by State Licensing officials, Head Start Program, CDA Nutrition, and other parents observing their right to our open door policy.
  • Understand that your child may be included in pictures connected with my daycare program, unless otherwise specified by you the parent.

Contract Adherence

This is our home as well as my place of business, so please be respectful of my family and home by adhering to the policies and procedures outlined in this parent handbook. I realize this is a lot of information to absorb. Because of this, please keep your parent handbook accessible so you can periodically review our policies and procedures as necessary. Do not hesitate to request a second copy or an electronic copy. I reserve the right to amend any portion of the Parent-Provider Contract/Enrollment Application, and Parent Handbook at any time. If and when I do make a change to the contract you will be given a copy.

A Final Note

It is important that you feel comfortable with my policies and procedures. If you do not understand something, have a concern, or you feel uncomfortable with one or more of our policies and/or procedures it is important that you express that to me before enrolling your child in our daycare. I am always open to suggestions and feel communication is a very important part of a quality daycare. If there are any problems or concerns in the future, I encourage you to talk to me about them. If a lengthy discussion is needed, a time that is convenient for both of us will be scheduled, as the other children still need my attention during business hours. Thank you for the opportunity to work with you and care for your little one. I look forward to a future of keeping your child smiling and safe.

Note: By signing the Parent-Provider Contract/Enrollment Application, it is understood that all of the policies and procedures of Inquiring Minds Daycare handbook are understood and agreed upon.

Brownell Family 1