As a childcare business owner, you may have discovered that keeping children safe and providing a healthy environment is an ongoing task. In fact, it seems to be the #1 focus of a childcare provider.
There are 10 websites that are loaded with health, fitness, nutrition and safety information that I believe every childcare business owner must visit and they are as follows:
- American Academy of Pediatrics
- The ask the Mediatrician
- Centers For Disease Control and Prevention
- Fit Source
- Head Start Body Start
- Let’s Move
- My Pyramid for Preschoolers
- Preschool Education from PE Central
- Safe Kids USA
- The United States Consumer Products Safety Commission
I know that may seem like a wealth of information in one blog post, however, I suggest that you visit at least one of the sites a day. You may also choose to follow the above organizations of social media or subscribe to their e-newsletters.
With Health & Safety in mind,
As I write this blog post, I reflect on my seven years of experience as a Medical assistant. As a Registered Medical Assistant I learned so much about the causes germs, the effects of sickness and disease.
Most importantly I learned how to stay healthy. I carried that experience into my Child Care Business and I believe mixing the two together has gave me the momentum to build a Quality, Healthy and Safe Child Care Business.
Along with my experience from the medical field, going through the Accreditation process 3-4 times, has inspired me to create a healthy & safe environment for young children.
Now, I am going to share with you (from my experience) 10 steps that you can take to provide a healthier and safe childcare business:
- Require that children wash their hands upon arrival
- Train your staff to be aware of the health & safety needs of young children in their care. This can be done in weekly memos, mentoring and/or with monthly health & safety meetings.
- Create an Illness policy that assures that sick children are not excepted into care and have a plan in place to isolate sick children when they become ill while in your care.
- Offer health & safety resources for parents on a regular basis. You are the expert and parents look to you for resources.
- Plan health & safety activities in your classroom(s) on a weekly basis. This could include: fire safety, hygiene practices, stranger danger, healthy eating practices, kitchen safety,etc. Idea: Sing Health & Safety songs,read stories, play healthy games, hang health related posters on the walls.
- Conduct a daily or monthly health & safety checklist. Here is a sample Monthly Indoor Checklist
- Be sure to train your staff on how to effectively supervise young children. “ Safe Care is Quality care.” Join the How to Effectively Supervise Young Children email list, for more information on child supervision.
- Have a procedure in place that assures that your entire program is sanitized at least once a week. This will help to minimize the spread of Germs. Including, sanitizing all toys. * Sanitize mouthed toys daily.
- Require that at least 2 staff members (in the home or building) has CPR certification and First aid Training.
- If you do not have a first aid kit, create one today. To create your own first aid kit, you will need: gloves, gauze, band-aids, first aid cream, medical tape, thermometer, splinter remover, ice pack and first aid procedures to refer to. (I may have forgotten some items, but this is a basic first aid kit) Be sure to create a kit for field trips, for your van and to take on the playground. Check out this article on First aid kits. Click here
For more childcare business tips, follow my podcast, facebook page, twitter and subscribe to my weekly childcare business e-tips. When you subscribe to my weekly e-tips, you will receive the e-Course: “7 steps to Quality care.”
Thanks for all that you do for young children and their families,