Our children will learn how to make healthy choices about food, screen time, self-care, and physical activity as part of their daily lives-building a foundation that will last a lifetime.
Day Nursery participates in the federally funded Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), ensures that all children are served nutritious meals and snacks, as well as milk with each meal. A diet with a wide variety of foods that are low in total fat, saturated fat and cholesterol is stressed. Children receive a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, which are served as close to their natural state as possible. Day Nursery serves nutritious meat and meat-alternatives that are minimally processed as well as low in fat and sodium. All grains served for meals and snacks are whole grains. Foods that are high in salt, sugar or fat are offered once or less per month.
Day Nursery does not serve foods containing artificial sweeteners, and foods containing processed sugars are severely limited. Wise food choices and healthful eating are encouraged.
All children enrolled at Day Nursery will have the opportunity to brush their teeth daily. Daily tooth brushing habits are important to establish at an early age to promote good oral hygiene. Every child has an individually labeled toothbrush for his or her own sole use.
At Day Nursery, we recognize that too much sunlight may increase a child’s risk of getting skin cancer in the future. The first level of sun safety protection is wearing dry clothing of a tightly woven fabric, such a lightweight long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and hats with brims, bills or flaps that shield the face and neck from the sun. With parental consent at enrollment, Day Nursery staff will apply sunscreen to children according to the manufacturer’s instructions before outdoor play.
Infants sleep according to their own schedule and are always put to sleep on their backs. To reduce to risk of SIDS, cribs will be supplied with a crib sheet only, never with a pillow, soft toys, bumpers or other soft items.
Children may choose to nap or rest quietly on individual nap mats while soothing music plays. Children are not required to sleep and may be given quiet activities such as books, puzzles, or other quiet manipulatives. Children may also choose stories to read from the bookshelf to read or have read to them.
At Day Nursery, we follow the recommended guidelines set forth by the American Academy of Pediatrics regarding screen time for children under age 5. Children under the age of 3 years are not exposed to any screen time while at school, and children ages 3-5 may have 15 minutes per week of screen time twice per week. Screen time for preschoolers consists of quality approved computer programs or educational software. Preschool teachers may occasionally use an educational video, no more than 15 minutes in length, which aligns with the monthly curriculum.
Day Nursery believes that physical activity is an essential component of a healthy lifestyle and must begin in infancy and extend throughout adulthood. Regular physical activity increases lean body mass, muscle, and bone strength and promotes good physical health.
Outdoor play is essential to children’s health and well-being. The time that children spend outdoors every day is just as important to their learning as the time spent in the classroom. Following NAEYC Weather Guidelines, children play outdoors every day, weather permitting.
Preschool children also take part in Kidsercise, a preschool exercise program created by the University of Scranton Occupational Therapy Department, in which OT Majors lead the children in a series of fun exercises during the weekly class. When outdoor play is not feasible for weather –related reasons, the teachers engage the children in gross motor activities within the classroom.
We support and encourage the breastfeeding mother’s decision to continue to breastfeed her child. In keeping with this philosophy, our program provides a welcoming atmosphere that encourages mothers to initiate and continue breastfeeding after returning to work or school. We also provide designated comfortable spaces for mothers to breastfeed their children at the center.
To assist the breastfeeding mother and infant in the transition from home into the childcare setting, Day Nursery staff will work with parents to develop a process for familiarizing the infant with bottle feedings prior to starting childcare.