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Monday, July 4, 2016

POTM: Staff & Volunteers

The following is taken directly from our Handbook. If you have any questions, let us know.

Jellybean Daycare & Preschool teachers enjoy their jobs and truly love working with children. They display a passion for teaching children through their conversations and affection with the children. All of our teachers either have their CDA (Child Development Associate credential) or Child Care Professional Associates in Applied Science or are working toward it (or a related field). 

Our staff members all go through the hiring process which includes: a personal interview with the administrator, a working interview in the classroom, and documentation of education and credentials. 

All staff members meet the requirements required by the state of Michigan. 
• Each staff member has had a criminal history check using ICHAT 
• Each staff member has been cleared through the Department of Human Services 
• Each staff member has current CPR, First Aid, and Blood Borne Pathogens certifications. 
• Staff members in the infant/toddler room have training in safer sleep, SIDS, and Shaken Baby Syndrome 
• Each staff member completes 16 hours of trainings, workshops, or seminars every year to learn new information on child development, curriculum, health and safety, family communications, and many other topics. 

Staff candidates (and volunteers) will NOT be hired if they have been convicted of any of the following: 
• A listed offense, as defined in section 2 of the sex offenders registration act, 1994 PA 295, MCL 28.722. 
• Child abuse or neglect.
• A felony involving harm or threatened harm to an individual within the 10 years immediately preceding the date of hire. 

Staff (and volunteers) will not be present in the center until there is documentation from the department of human services on file at the center that he or she has not been named in a central registry case as a perpetrator of child abuse or child neglect. 

The Director and owner, Ms. Jenn, has been doing daycare since 1999. She started as a home provider then expanded to a group home and has now opened Jellybean Daycare & Preschool. She worked very hard to receive Accreditation from the National Association for Family Child Care, obtain her Child Development Associate and her Associate degree in early childhood education.

When we are full, our staff will consist of 15-18 employees. Ms. Jenn is the director, owner, and lead preschool teacher. Juju is Jellybean Daycare & Preschool’s administrator and co-director. Mimi is our chef. There will be a lead infant/toddler teacher and assistant teachers enough to meet a 1 to 3 ratio in that room. There will be a lead preschool teacher and assistant teachers to meet a 1 to 5 ratio in the preschool room. These ratios are ones that we have chosen to give the children a little extra attention. Occasionally, we might have to use state ratios (1 to 4 and 1 to 8) in instances where a teacher calls in or in an emergency situation. For more about your child’s teacher, look in their room where their interests and credentials are posted or on our website staff page. If you ever have a question for any of us, please let us know. We are here to help. 

Volunteers, including parents, who will be unsupervised with children, will have also been cleared by the Department of Human Services. All other volunteers will be supervised by staff at all times. If a volunteer has contact with children for at least 4 hours a week for 2 consecutive weeks then we will require a physical from their doctor as well as verification that they are free of TB. This is the something that the state requires of our staff and volunteers. 

Jellybean Daycare & Preschool hires employees based on their education and expertise within our environment. We cannot be responsible of held liable if parents hire center employees for privately arranged child care outside of Jellybean Daycare & Preschool. 

Monday, June 20, 2016

Busying your Kids this Summer

If you have older ones (as many of our families do) you may be wondering what you're going to do this summer with all their extra time. There are many different things around here that you can do as a family or they can do by themselves that will keep them engaged and interested all summer. Here are some ideas based on how much money you're willing to spend.

$$:

• Summer Camp: There are so many different summer camps around the area for multiple interests. Is your kid super interested in horses? There's a ton of horse riding focused summer camps.

• YMCA Programs: The YMCA has a ton of different classes for different things that you're bound to find something that your child is into.

• Community Center Programs: Just like the YMCA, your local community center has a list of different classes you can sign your child up for.

• Road Trip: Take a family road trip! Plan a route and head on out. Explore different states and take hikes. Whatever your family interests are, find them on the road!

• Planet Rock: This awesome rock climbing adventure is open to kids 5 and up. Help them move their bodies and work on their coordination!

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• Water Park: Any water park is a day full of fun and ends in exhaustion for everyone. Plan a day, take a lunch, and spend time with the family rolling around in the water.

• Amusement Park: Cedar Point or any park like it is a great time for the whole family. Schedule a day during the weekend and head on out.

• Little League (or another sports team): Let your kid challenge themselves with a commitment throughout the summer. Find out what they like and sign them up for a summer full of excitement and fun.

• Hands On Museum: This museum in Ann Arbor is a fun way to explore science and other fun things as a family. It's also indoors in case you need a break from the sun and the welcome feel of air conditioning. :)

• Domino's Petting Farm: The petting farm at Domino's Farms lets your child explore the animals up close. They're also open every day!


Free:

• Water Play: Water play in the backyard is a fun easy way to get cool while staying close to home.

• Botanical Gardens: The Matthaei Botanical Gardens are a beautiful sight! Take a walk with the whole family and look at all the pretty flowers together.

• Fairy Door Search: There are so many fairy doors around Ann Arbor! You can get a map of where all the current ones are (even though new ones pop up every day) and explore Ann Arbor as a family. Maybe you could stop by Kilwins on your way back for an ice cream.

• Ann Arbor Art Fair: The Art Fair comes around every year and is a fun way to look at local artists and explore Ann Arbor.

• Ann Arbor Summer Festival: The Summer Festival has something for everyone! There are so many different artists and genres that you'll find something for your family every day.

Monday, June 6, 2016

POTM: Toilet Training

The following is taken directly from our Handbook. If you have any questions, let us know.

Once a child has shown interest in using the toilet at home or at the center, teachers will remind the child frequently (usually every hour) throughout the day and at transition times (before going outside, before nap, after nap) to use the restroom. Teachers will not force a child to use the toilet. We want this to be a pleasant experience for the child so that it continues to be something they want to do. We recommend children wear underwear during this time, and accidents do happen, so we ask that while your child is toilet training, you keep their cubby stocked with plenty of extra clothes. If they have an accident, we just change their clothes and try again. By law, we are not permitted to rinse or wash any contents from the soiled clothes. Children do not have to be toilet trained to be in the preschool room.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Letter from Ms. Jenn: Mindfulness in the Classroom


   Lately, I have been super into mindfulness and meditation and would love to start bringing it more into the classroom. Being mindful means to be in the present. To be non-judging, positive, aware, trusting, patient, and to be able to let go of things that don't really matter in the grand scheme of things.

   There are many ways to be mindful that usually just starts with trying really hard to stop, take a second, and be aware of everything that's going on. That's a little easier said than done, especially for the little ones. Some ways that we will be practicing here and that you can do at home include: yoga, breathing techniques, sensory exploration, listening exercises to really listen to the world, thankfulness, and not worrying.

   Being a kid with all kinds of things to busy yourself makes it hard to be mindful. But practicing a little at a time here and there definitely makes it easier, especially when the whole family practices mindfulness as a group.

   We shared an article awhile back about a school that practiced mindfulness as the lead core of their curriculum and they had great success with it. One of their favorite exercises that the kids were interested in was their breathing rock. Each child had their own special breathing rock that they would place on their belly to watch it rise and fall with their breath. The idea was for each child to breath deeply and calm their body all while they were being mindful of their breathing and their body by watching their breathing rock.

   There are lots of ways to easily be mindful. We would love to hear about what you do at home to be mindful as we practice mindfulness here at Jellybean.