A good early childhood environment meets the child’s basic needs and supports and encourages children to engage in activities that implement the program’s curriculum. the environment is designed to enable staff to facilitate the optimum learning for their children. the environment makes parents and guardians feel welcome, involved, and empowered. Kids often trip or tumble so the play space should accommodate this with safety precautions. Local building codes for children’s indoor play areas are also important to ensure the area meets all standards during the construction phase. An early childhood environment is many things: It’s a safe place where children are protected from the elements and are easily supervised, and it’s where the important activities of the day take place, such as playing, eating, sleeping, washing hands, and going to the bathroom. The success of an early childhood environment is not dependent upon aesthetics and design alone. Places Children Can Call Their Own. A basic human need is the need to belong. Children need to feel they belong, too. They need to be close to people they know, have familiar and comfortable objects, and be in a setting that has a personal history for them. Early Childhood Environments Should Be Functional for Both Children and Teachers
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Accidents- leading cause of death for children. Most deaths could easily be prevented, so it is important to keep your child’s safety in mind at all times. Children are most commonly exposed to lead by the ingestion of paint chips or dirt that is contaminated with lead-Those days lead was an ingredient of paint, so children living in older homes with chipping paint are most at risk for lead poisoning- Reviewing your home’s risk for causing lead poisoning- avoid purchasing older toys at yard/garage/rummage sales. Some may have been recalled for lead paint- eating foods that are cooked or stored in imported or glazed pottery. Make sure older buildings contain no lead, asbestos or other toxic materials. Your community health department or child care center licensing agency can put you in contact with experts who can take samples of paint and other materials for official findings.
Learning to use baby products correctly and according to age appropriate recommendations. Putting door knob covers on doors that you don’t want your child to open, including the bathroom, rooms that aren’t childproofed. Checking the floor regularly for small items and toys that younger children can choke on. includes marbles, balls, uninflected or broken balloons, small magnets, and small toy pieces. Keeping all of the top household poisons out of your child’s reach and in a childproofed cabinet. Ice pack-angin medicine-kids panadol-first aid-updated regularly. You can prevent falls and/or things falling on them; As with infants, be sure to secure chairs, tables, shelves, lamps. so they can’t pull them over on themselves. If you have windows that they can reach, be sure they are screened, open from the top, or keep them closed and locked. If you can’t- barricade them. Installing smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.- common sources of carbon monoxide exposure include:- Preventing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning:
Oil and gas furnaces
Placing latches and locks on cabinets and drawers.
Installing a stove guard in front of the stove to keep your child’s hands off the burners.
Securing appliances, including the refrigerator, dishwasher, and oven, with an appliance locking strap.
Installing covers on electrical outlets- Take a look around your home at your electrical cords- move them out of reach.
Be sure your stairways (stairs, porches, decks, lofts, etc.) have railings- if possible one that a child can reach. If your steps are prone to being slippery, put tread mats on them or carpeting- something non-skid. If you are using a high chair for toddlers, be sure they have a wide base (so they can’t be tipped over) and always use the restraints. Never leave your baby unattended in the bath. Be sure your smoke alarms are working properly. SAFETY SCISSORS-dap equipments!
A baby gate should be an important part of every home with children. These items safely block off different parts of the house that are potentially dangerous to toddlers such as staircases. If there are any areas of the house that your toddler should not be going to yet, then you definitely need to find a gate to keep them safe. Ideally, they should be easy to install sturdy and be made of materials that are safe for your toddler. guidelines for buying the best one possible:
A frame that connects to a door frame and does not have any gaps for the heads or fingers of children. Be sure there are no sharp edges.
Do not use gates with potential foot holds.
Do you have toys or objects like marbles, legos, etc that have a diameter of less than 1 1/4 inch (about the size of a half dollar) or have detachable parts? If so they need to be thrown out or put away and NOT USED in your daycare for toddler safety/ Keep all plastic bags and Styrofoam packing out of their reach for toddler safety-Choking/suffocation and Poison hazards
Common sense tells us to keep all medications, cleaning supplies, insect poisons, bug spray, weeds killers out of reach or locked up. be sure that all sunscreen, perfumes, and cosmetics, alcoholic beverages, vitamins, and pet supplies are as well. Do not chemically treat your yard, use insect/rat poisons, or weed killer when the kids are present. Also, can the kids get behind your T.V.? If so, move it so they aren’t able to. If you have your computer, DVD players, cd players within their reach, move them up high so they can’t. Keep lighters and matches out of reach. Be sure your toilet lids are always closed. Always keep sharp objects out of a toddlers reach. Only takes a couple of seconds for those to become sharp! So are the edges of an aluminum foil/plastic wrapping box! There must be two exits out of each child activity room. One exit must lead directly to the outside. There must be a fire suppression system throughout the facility. Follow guidelines-health/fire departmnt. The building will need to have high ceilings to accommodate the main play structure. We recommend between 5 and 6 meters. Insurance?Equipment made of?-high quality. Matainance-carefully evaluated and assessed on an annual basis.
If you have a working fireplace, wood stove or space heater, is it safely screened and inaccessible to children? Are privacy locks on bathroom or bedroom doors inaccessible to children? Can the lock be opened quickly from the outside? Does the kitchen meet fire safety standards? Is fire protection available within a short distance of your center? Does the center have adequate hand washing and toileting areas in the rooms occupied by children?
The location for the preschool play area is one of the most important decisions- Choosing the location for each piece of play equipment takes some time and consideration. An open space with plenty of room for active preschoolers is essential. The room also needs some degree of security depending on the particular situation. In a child care setting, a room that is easy to monitor and keep secure is more important. Avoid areas with high air pollution/near gas stations where there are underground or above ground gas/oil storage tanks. Survey-surrounding-road-CAR parks. Once the location is established, the foundation of the room begins to take shape. Responsive/Stimulating-Not overwhelming(DAP)(colours). Because so many child care facilities have limited space, it can be challenging to respond to the uniqueness of each child within a collective environment. Young children have unique personalities and needs that require us to respond to them as individuals, not as members of a group. The environment must be responsive to this need. Ease of cleaning, maintenance, supervision, cost, and adult aesthetics should not detract from providing spaces children feel are designed for them. Children need to have private areas, secluded corners, lofts, and odd-shaped enclosures. Individual cubbies for each child’s clothes and belongings, photographs of home and family, and at least a couple of secluded areas where two or three children can gather allow children opportunities to maintain their individuality and break away from the group to avoid over stimulation.
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Accurate measurements of the area help with the indoor play equipment selection. It also helps when choosing and purchasing the floor covering. A soft flooring option helps prevent injuries when children fall off of the soft play equipment. Preschool children often fall; soft surfaces such as mats underneath protect the kids. A rubber floor covering is a common option for a children’s indoor play area. It helps absorb the shock when a child falls from short play equipment. Gymnastic mats are another option for the area. These floor mats also help absorb the shock. Foam mats are also used for kids’ play areas. Local building codes governing children’s play areas might have specific requirements for the floor covering so it’s always a good idea to check first. A floor plan of the room helps determine the layout of the children’s indoor play area. It should provide a mixture of play equipment that is appropriate for preschool-aged children. The budget will influence the selection of the equipment. Soft play equipment is a popular option if the budget allows. These special pieces of equipment are designed to prevent injuries as the young children play on them. Evaluate the entire center, including the playground, hallways, and bathrooms.
Hire professional-know 1st aid/***- handle young ones-follow RATIO. knowledge and understanding of infant/toddler growth patterns and developmental needs are critical in providing appropriate care and experiences.
Creating play zones that separate the different types of play equipment increases the safety of the children’s indoor playground. Consider the amount of space each toy needs, including a buffer area to allow easy movement. The types of activities that go well together are also a factor. Once the arrangement is selected and the soft play equipment and other play areas are set up, a final walk through is needed. This test run checks for a good flow in the indoor play area to make sure the kids won’t constantly run into one another. Kids and adults should easily move around all of the play equipment. A clear line of vision for the adults from all vantage points in the room is another key factor to check during the test run.
Noise making area separate-quiet ones. Managing noise is important in a classroom. Placing carpet on the floor absorbs noise as absorbent tile on the ceiling. The reading center should be next to a quiet area like the art area. Blocks are loud, and should be located next to other loud areas such as the woodworking bench. Noisy activities can also be placed in transition areas or moved outside in good weather.
group size, the developmental stages and the infants’/toddlers’ needs shall determine the amount of space and spatial organization. The environmental needs of non-mobile infants are different from those of mobile infants, as space becomes a crucial consideration for young infants developing gross motor skills such as crawling and walking. The use of appropriate barriers is necessary for the safety and protection of younger infants. Dividers are any physical object that serves to delineate areas within a classroom, create interest areas, control traffic, and distribute children throughout the classroom. Almost anything can be used as a divider, so long as it is safe shelves, couches, fabric hung from a line, streamers attached to the ceiling, folding screens, puppet stages, etc. Safety is obviously a critical issue. Some dividers are easy to push over. The larger and heavier they are at the bottom, the safer. A divider can also be secured by fastening it to the floor or a wall. Several equipment companies have introduced dividers that attach directly to storage units and furniture. Ideally, dividers should be multi-functional for use as storage units, play furniture, and display boards. Keep in mind that solid dividers or walls of more than 30-40 inches high disrupt the circulation of air in the classroom and limit supervision of children. Less solid dividers, like fabric, avoid this problem. One teacher creatively used colorful fabric streamers attached to the ceiling as effective dividers.
Unlike traditional classrooms, early childhood environments need to support both basic functions and learning activities. Look around your classroom from a child’s perspective. Are toilets, sinks, windows, faucets, drinking fountains, mirrors, towel racks, chairs and tables, tooth brush containers, and bulletin boards at the child’s level and child-sized? Are classrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and eating areas close together so that children can develop self-help skills and important autonomous behaviors?
Like children, teachers also need to have spaces that are functional. Teachers need to be able to arrange and rearrange their classrooms for various class activities and supervision purposes. Classrooms that include permanent, built-in features such as lofts, playhouses, tables, benches, alcoves, and cubbies can be problematic. These types of fixed features make it difficult for teachers to create areas for gross motor activities, can cause injury in active children, or prevent inclusion of physical activities altogether. Classrooms built as a basic shell work best. Adaptations must be made carefully for any child with special needs, be they physical challenges, learning disabilities, or emotional issues. Brail and large lettering can be used for children with visual impairments, and sign language can be incorporated into the curriculum for those children with hearing impairments. Reducing distractions, glare, and over stimulation helps accommodate children with ADD and ADHD. Visual images are an important part of developing a feeling of belonging in all children, so it is important to display pictures of single parent families, grandparent families, and homes of every race and ethnicity, including interracial, multiethnic, and adoptive families. The entire center should also reflect diversity throughout the world race, ethnicity, languages.
Storage areas are a little like entrance and exits-they receive lots of traffic and are noisy and congested. For these reasons, storage areas can sometimes foster disruptive behavior and noise. Provide easy access to materials, allowing children to get what they need quietly and easily. The closer materials are to where they will be used, the better. Storage must also be designed so that materials for independent child use are separate from those teachers control.
Activity Area Access. Activity areas need to be located next to supplies and be easy to clean up. The classic example is the art area. While providing easy access to paint, easels, paper, and brushes, the art area needs to be close to a water source and on a surface that can withstand a mess. Similarly, the reading area must be close to book shelves, magazine racks, and comfortable places to sit.
This is especially true once their children become mobile and start crawling their way into trouble. Child safety is a very sensitive issue and importance for it is rising in the recent times with the rising cases of child missing, child injuries, child labor and so on. As a social citizen; it is your duty to support child safety awareness and this could be best done by protecting your own child from the world. efforts which you put to save your child from any of the dangers. Saving your child is extremely easy as it mainly includes one precaution which if followed by you can surely make a change. This precaution is that you need to keep a constant eye on your child.
The areas for play, diapering, feeding and napping shall be set up to maximize contact between the caregiver and the infant. These areas shall allow the interaction to be unhurried and quiet. Areas (especially play areas) for non-mobile infants shall be separate from those for mobile infants. The napping area shall be physically separate from other activity areas. Partitions or other suitable barricades shall be used to separate the napping area from other areas. The outdoor activity area shall be suitably surfaced and well-drained. The outdoor activity area shall be equipped with a variety of age-and developmentally-appropriate toys and equipment. The outdoor activity area shall also have shaded areas. Cribs/cots shall be of sturdy construction with closely-spaced bars. Each crib/cot shall be occupied by only one infant. Each crib/cot shall have a firm mattress and it shall be covered with vinyl or similar moisture-resistant material. Cribs/cots shall be arranged so as to provide a walkway and work space between the cribs/cots sufficient to permit staff to reach each infant without having to step over or reach over another infant-observable. Separate facilities shall be provided for food preparation. Food preparation utensils and equipment shall not be used for other purposes. Sufficient and suitable facilities shall be provided for the sterilization of milk bottles. Sinks with running water shall be provided near the diaper change area at a ratio of one sink for every 10 infants /toddlers aged 18 months and below. Sufficient potty chairs shall be provided for the infants / toddlers- kept separate from the kitchen/food preparation areas. Sleeping infants shall be placed on their backs rather than on their fronts to ensure that their breathing is not interfered. Any other soft materials that may potentially block the airways such as pillows, blankets, comforters, and bean bag chairs shall be removed. Feeding equipment and all surfaces used for food preparation shall be sterilized after each use. Liquid soap shall be used and hands washed under running water
before and after diapering
before and after preparation of meals and feeding an infant
when in contact with bodily fluids such as mucus, urine, saliva or faecal matter
Disposable paper towels shall be used for drying hands. The diapering area shall be disinfected with each diaper change. Soiled diapers shall be placed in plastic bags and disposed of in a covered bin, preferably with a step pedal to reduce the risk of contamination. Log book RECORD-allergies/ diaper changing routines/ feeding times/ injuries/visitors
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