The infant program is available at our Redwood Avenue site. We accept children as young as 6 months of age and children are considered infants until they turn 18 months of age, when they graduate to toddlerhood. The staff-to-child ratio for infants is 1:3 and our program is licensed for 6 infants.
The infant program is a program that focuses heavily on developing social-emotional skills and all skills are developed through play. Activities are provided daily which include, but are not limited to music and movement, cognitive development, gross and fine motor skills, constructive play, sensory experiences, creative art experiences, and early literacy development.
The infant educators keep track of everything that happens in each child’s day on written reports. These reports are always available to parents and include diapering information, meals, and periods of rest.
The infant program is breastfeeding-friendly and parents are encouraged to breastfeed throughout the day. They are equipped with a fridge for bottles of formula or breastmilk. A kettle is used to boil water. The water is then poured into a pot and the bottles are placed in the water to warm.
Infants are required to go outside daily for up to 2 hours of sleep or play, in accordance with the Child Care and Early Years Act. Our “cut-off” temperature is -15 with the windchill in the winter, however, staff are encouraged to use their discretion and they may go out if it’s slightly cooler or than that. As such, appropriate outdoor apparel is required daily.
Parents are required to provide: diapers, diaper wipes, formula (can or premixed bottles) or breastmilk (if applicable), bottles (if applicable), a soother (if applicable), extra clothing.
The infant program is very careful about the Health Unit (and our) illness policy. Children with a temperature of above 100.4*F/38.0*C must be excluded from the centre for a full 24 hours after the fever has broken without the use of fever-reducing medication. Children who are experiencing diarrhea or vomiting must be excluded for 48 hours after the last episode of diarrhea/vomit. Other illnesses or infections may require a doctor’s note to return.
The educators in the infant program try to ensure that their program is not overstimulating, but is still aesthetically pleasing and intriguing for the children. They carefully select their activities so that they are developmentally-appropriate and tailored to the enrolled childrens’ current interests and developmental levels. The infant group is a diverse group as they can have infants ranging from 6 months of age to 18 months of age, who have very different skill levels and developmental focuses. This presents unique challenges for the educators but is of utmost importance that each individual child’s interests, needs, and developmental milestones are met.