When it comes to the care of infants and toddlers, we at the Austin Children’s Academy (ACA) know that your fundamental concern is for the safety, comfort, and loving care of your children. We treat your babies and toddlers with as much compassion as if they were our very own. By placing them in the arms of our joyful, experienced caregivers, in an environment designed to be a home-away-from-home, you’re offering your children a world full of opportunities for play, wonder, as well as cognitive, sensory, and motor skill development.
In our infant and toddler program, we focus on three basic tenets of early educational development. The first is to instill in your children a sense of warmth, safety, and security in their new environment. The second is to nurture trust between the children and caregivers by fulfilling the babies’ and toddlers’ most basic needs in a timely and loving manner. The third is to help them explore their new world in a way that will encourage their ever-maturing sensory, cognitive, and motor-skill development.
Ms. Blanca is very special to us and has been a real gem in our experience at ACA. She is always happy for the babies, and works diligently on their cognitive, social and kinesthetic development, all the while, ensuring everyone is loved and well-cared for. She comes with many years of professional early-childhood experience , speaks to them in both Spanish and English, reads and even plays guitar for them. We couldn’t be more fortunate to have her as our child’s caregiver!
When it comes to helping your child feel welcome and confident in their new environment, safety is the first priority. One visit to our facilities and any concerns you may have will be put at ease. Here are just a few of the ways we keep your infants and toddlers happy, healthy, and safe:
- Our classrooms are dedicated to specific age groups. This allows us to choose only the toys that are certified safe, engaging, and developmentally sound, as well as to modify the space appropriately.
- We have two large outdoor play areas, equipped to accommodate the gross motor skill needs of different age groups. These play areas are enclosed and monitored by security cameras.
- The ACA has strict policies and procedures when it comes to cleanliness and health issues. We require every parent to sign an Infant Safety Agreement concerning what materials are safe to be kept in the crib with a sleeping baby. Our goal is to protect every child and reduce the spread of illness.
- Every teacher is trained and certified in First Aid as well as infant and child CPR.
- Every classroom has at least two teachers so that there’s always someone monitoring the napping children as well as the active ones.
When it comes to developing a strong and trusting bond between child and caregiver, our teachers are experts. The daily schedule takes into account the needs of each individual child and is modified as they mature into new developmental stages. Our teachers understand the importance of interpersonal engagement in the development of young minds. A visit to the observation area of our facility will show caregivers smiling and making eye contact with gurgling infants, singing to them, playing games of peek-a-boo, and otherwise engaging with them to encourage language development and emotional bonding. Trained as keen observers, they’ll notice subtle shifts in mood that may indicate the need for a nap, a change of diaper, or a snack, and react to them to pre-empt frustration. When infants and toddlers feel as safe and loved as if they were in their own home, then they have the confidence to venture out to play and wander with joy.
Herein lies the advantage of the Austin Children’s Academy program over many conventional daycares. The greater Austin Children’s Academy is a large, 10,000 square foot facility with ten classrooms that focus on early childhood education through kindergarten. For those who dread introducing their children to a series of new facilities each time they “age” up through infant and nursery programs, preschool, or kindergarten, ACA offers your children the opportunity to “age up” at the same facility. But the more important advantage of the nursery program at ACA is that your children will benefit from the school’s child-centered Montessori Method of educational philosophy.
Developed over 100 years ago by Italy’s first female physician, the Montessori Method is based on child-directed learning. Montessori classrooms don’t have rows of chairs; they have wide open spaces. Teachers don’t lecture; they guide children through academic and developmental milestones using natural creativity and curiosity to your child’s advantage. The hallmarks of the method include keen observation by teachers, guided but independent learning, and developing the qualities of initiative, self-reliance, and intrinsic love of learning.
At the infant and toddler level, the quality of keen observation is the key. Teachers are trained to quickly discern when a child is hungry, sleepy, or frustrated, as well as to encourage cognitive, sensory, and motor skill development. Picking up a block is a milestone for a young baby, just as learning how to walk is for a rising toddler. Our teachers keep track of those milestones while encouraging and nurturing the ones that naturally follow. We encourage all this development through joyous play, whether it’s free play in the classroom and playground, playing games, singing, listening to stories, or engaging in art. Your child’s natural curiosity is the engine that fuels his or her development.
Finally, here at ACA we believe that communication between parents and teachers is vital to your child’s comfort and growth as well as your peace of mind. We encourage you to speak to the lead teacher long before your baby’s first day at our facility. The more information we know about your child, the better we can serve his or her ever-changing needs. Constant communication through the school year is encouraged so that we can mark the milestones your child is making at home as well as communicate the fun your child is having through his or her day.
Want to hear more about our three-to-eighteen-month program at ACA? Give us a call to schedule a tour and interview. We are confident that once you take a look at our colorful, child-centered, spacious facilities and talk to our experienced teachers, you’ll understand why we believe the Austin Children’s Academy has the best early education program in all of Cedar Park Tx.