The Sandcastle Times February 2024
"Building Strong Foundations for a Lifetime of Learning"
Empowering Growth: The Importance of Continuing Education for Educators
Our dedicated team of educators participated in a comprehensive training session on January 15th. This training covered a range of valuable topics to enhance our teaching skills and create an even more enriching environment for the children. All of our teams came together at the Holiday Inn in Norwich. It was a day of collaboration, learning, and laughs. Our staff were treated to breakfast, lunch and everyone received a swag bag of goodies. Many of our staff were also recognized for their dedication to Carelot and the Children they teach!
Here's a glimpse of what the training included:
Discipline and Guidance:
- Exploring effective disciplinary strategies
- Understanding guidance techniques that foster positive behavior
- Techniques for managing stress in the educational setting
- Promoting a healthy work-life balance
The Power of Sign Language:
- Introduction to sign language as a communication tool
- Incorporating sign language into daily classroom interactions
Hands-On Music for the Classroom:
- Interactive session on integrating music into lessons
- Creating a musical and engaging learning atmosphere
We believe that continuous learning is essential for personal and professional growth, and we are committed to providing our educators with the tools and knowledge needed to excel in their roles.
Meet our Teams!
A message from Holly Bevilacqua, COO
Dear Carelot Families,
WOW! This month marks a significant milestone for Carelot as we joyfully celebrate our 26th anniversary! We are beyond grateful for the incredible journey we've shared with all our families, children, and dedicated staff. Thank you for making Carelot a truly special place where bonds flourish, friendships are forged, and little ones thrive.
It's heartwarming to see families who have been with us since our doors first opened in 1998. Some of those children have now become Carelot employees or have enrolled their own children at Carelot—a testament to the enduring connections and trust we've built over the years.
As we embark on 2024, we can't wait to share exciting events and memories with you throughout the year. Stay tuned for some fantastic celebrations/programs/community events and more in the upcoming months.
A heartfelt thank you to all families and staff for your commitment to preparing for our upcoming parent-teacher conferences. Whether it's through a phone call, Zoom, or in person, we appreciate your active participation. Please ensure you've had a conference with your child's teacher and completed the necessary paperwork. These conferences provide a valuable opportunity for us to share your child's development and ensure a collaborative approach to their education and care.
Important Note: This conference marks the first of two times for formal written reports this year. Your active involvement in these conferences is invaluable in shaping your child's educational journey.
We believe that open communication between home and school is the key to a great education and the care of our children. Our goal is to blend your expectations and home practices seamlessly with ours, fostering a supportive environment for your child's growth. We encourage you to glance through your child's developmental portfolios. These are the black binders in the classrooms with the children's names on them. You will be amazed!
Our devoted staff has been diligently assessing and teaching the children in our care, preparing them for a bright future. While it may seem like playtime in the classrooms, rest assured that through structured play and instruction, our children are developing socially, emotionally, intellectually, and physically. Teachers not only provide care but also craft academically sound lesson plans to guide your child's development. Please continue to share your ideas, concerns, and information with our teachers daily; your input is invaluable.
Exciting news! We recently updated our website with more information and a user-friendly interface. Don't forget to explore it! It's now your even better go-to place for the calendar of events, important information, and our monthly newsletter. Stay tuned for our upcoming Programming calendar, outlining exciting activities and plans for the upcoming months
As always, please feel free to reach out directly anytime! Holly@carelot.net
Just a few reminders:
1. HEAT UPS for Lunches:
- We are unable to prepare food for lunches, as we are not licensed for food prep.
- Kindly prepare your child's lunch at home and send items that only require a quick heat up.
- Examples include items that can be easily reheated, while we are unable to prepare items like Easy Mac.
2. Safety for Infants & Toddlers:
- Please refrain from placing plastic bags in cubbies or within the children's reach.
- If you bring items in a plastic bag, kindly hand it directly to the classroom teacher to avoid any safety hazards.
3. Schedule Changes:
- Our staffing is based on the contracted hours provided upon enrollment.
- If you need to make a schedule change, a request can be submitted at any time.
- If space is available, we will add the extra hours you need to your permanent schedule.
- Please note that any change in hours requires a two-week written notice to ensure proper staffing- You can find a schedule change form on our website on the FORMS page.
- We appreciate your understanding, as we must meet state ratio requirements and want to ensure we have adequate staffing to cover your child's needs.
Your cooperation in adhering to these guidelines is crucial for maintaining a safe and organized environment. If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to us.
Please complete the Family Conference/Communication form below if you haven't already done so for our records!
Some Friendly Reminders
As we strive to provide the best possible care and education for your children, we would like to bring your attention to some important reminders regarding our scheduling policies.
1. Schedule Changes: Our staff is scheduled based on the hours you have contracted with Carelot. If there are any changes needed to your contracted hours, we kindly ask that you reach out to your site manager or Executive Director at the earliest convenience or complete the change form on our webstie. This ensures proper staffing and allows us to maintain the high standards of care we are committed to providing.
2. Drop-off Time: For the consistency and optimal early education experience for your child, we encourage you to adhere to your scheduled drop-off times. In the event that your child will be arriving late, please make sure to notify the center by 9 am. This allows us to adjust staffing accordingly and ensures the smooth functioning of our programs.
3. Pick-up Time: Many of our dedicated staff members have families or other commitments after their shifts end or the center closes. We kindly request that you adhere to your contracted hours for pick-up and be respectful of the center's closing hours. This ensures a smooth transition for our staff and helps maintain a positive environment for all families.
Your cooperation in following these guidelines is greatly appreciated. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to your site manager or Executive Director.
Extra clothes and outdoor attire:
Please check your child’s extra clothes bin for warm clothes and updated sizes. We also remind you to please send your child with hats, mittens, snow boots, snow pants, gloves and warm jackets as we do go outside daily for some fresh air!
Question of the month: If you could describe Carelot in ONE word what would it be? Please share your feedback by clicking the link below.
Don't forget to submit your answers! You can win a $25 tuition credit!
It's easy to win by clicking below and submitting your answer!
Thanks for helping us make our programs better! Without everyone’s input, we are not able to effectively assess how our programs are doing! We appreciate you taking the time to help us assess our policies, procedures, curriculum, and more!
January Winner: Congrats to The Cole Family of Brooklyn who won the January question.
What do you feel is the most important aspect of a childcare program?
Thank you for your feedback!
Fun and Learning through January!
2024 kicked off in full swing with our co-sponsorship of the Carelot Children's Center Annual In-service day for the staff!!! Staff from all of our programs participated in a day of professional development and curriculum planning made possible in part by the generosity of our PTO and Carelot!! The experience and information gained at in-service day come directly back to our children and their families through our teachers! We are proud to have been able to support such a wonderful day for the staff!!!!
Mabels Labels is offering an exclusive sale for you and your supporters. All month long the Fundraising Combo will be 30% OFF!
This combo is already our lowest price point and we’re dropping it even lower! You’re not going to want to miss this.
Here’s how you and your supporters can get in on the sale:
- Visit campaigns.mabelslabels.com and search for your organization’s name (CARELOT CHILDREN'S CENTER- EAST LYME)
- Choose the “Combo Label Packs” tab at the top of the screen
- Find the Fundraising Combo as one of the first options- personalize and add to cart!
A glimpse of Inservice Day!
All around Carelot……….
As we celebrate the month of love, we want to extend our warmest wishes for a Happy Valentine's Day from all of us at Carelot Children's Center. Don't miss sign ups for classroom celebrations.
A big thank you to all the families who joined us for Family Conferences in January. We trust you found the one-on-one time with your child's teachers insightful and enjoyed learning more about your child's development. Your partnership is invaluable in creating a nurturing environment for your child's early learning journey.
Our programs have been buzzing with activity as we focus on early learning standards and developmental milestones. We invite you to take a moment to explore your child's portfolio to witness the incredible progress they've made.
In February, get ready for some exciting learning experiences! Our theme for the month is "Community Helpers," and each week our Preschoolers will dive into the alphabet, exploring a new letter. Be sure to check our calendar of events for all the details.
Save the date! Valentine's parties will take place in each classroom on February 14th. Your little ones can look forward to special snacks, activities, and sharing Valentine's Day joy with their friends.
Looking ahead, we're thrilled to announce that we are planning an exciting summer for the children at Carelot! We'll be offering our Preschool Camp and a Camp for School-Age students in grades K-5. Registration will open soon, so be sure to sign up early as spaces are limited. Stay tuned for sign-up information that will be sent out later this month!