Program: Strong Start
Location: various schools in BC
Cost: free, parent participation required
When: mornings or afternoons, depending on the school
Parking available: yes, limited
This is probably the most complete program for 0-5 years olds that exists at the moment and it is completely free. It is more of a 360 program and I will explain why. It requires parent/ caretaker participation.
The program runs in the morning from 8:45am to 11:45am or in the afternoon, depending on the school you go to. Some schools offer it in the morning, some in the afternoon. Here’s a schedule that I found, some may have changed, it’s been a while since I found this, actually it was handed to me by a representative some time ago.
It starts with a 1h 30 m of free play, then they do clean up and head out to the gym, 15 minutes later, they come back for snack and then circle time. There are a large variety of toys and activities, every day is different, and entertaining. My daughter goes here almost daily, and she is never bored, neither am I, just by watching her. You get to network with the other parents as well.
The only downsize I see is that there are kids of different ages so sometimes the older ones will take the toys from the little ones, or some toys are not suitable for all children and so on. But the parent is there to watch the child. There is of course a coordinator as well, that makes sure things happen as they should; Jennifer Benoit is this person at Riverview Elementary and she is very nice, and helpful, my daughter loves her very much. She is definitely a good influence on her.
There is a washroom, for children mainly of course.
That’s it for now!
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