Children’s Integrated Services is an innovative, effective program
By Chloe Learey, Executive Director
One of Vermont’s most innovative programs in early childhood is Children’s Integrated Services. Families with young children have been able to access multiple supports through one entry point for over 10 years because policymakers understood that this approach would improve child outcomes and be a more efficient, effective way to deploy our financial and human resources.
However, the Scott administration, as well as members of the Vermont Legislature, are looking at dismantling this program.
Farm to School
Our Farm to School team has been busy! Check out the video produced by the team below which showcases their goals, current activities and community partnerships. We were also featured on Food Connects’ blog with a peice writtten by Sheila Humphrey who has been guiding us through our Farm to School efforts. Read the blog here:
Par for the Cause
Our biggest fundraiser of the year is coming right up! We invite you to help support our programs by participating in Par for the Cause. We have a month-long raffle which awards 2 prizes every day in June and a Children’s Storybook themed disc-golf course on June 26 & 27. We could use your help to spread the word!
- Share the Facebook event
- Print and post a flyer
- Tell your friends & family about our amazing raffle!
We also have a small wish-list of supplies to help create the holes. If you have any of the following items that you can donate, please stop by the front desk or send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Shellac or other clear waterproofing spray
- Paint (gray, black, white, blue, yellow, red, green) – acrylic or tempera
- Paint brushes – various sized 1.5 inches and smaller
- Spray foam
More details about the event, including raffle prizes, tee-time sign-up, storybooks titles and business supporters.
Early Learning Center News
In the month of April, we gained a few new members to our team. We welcomed Tiffany and Amy and are happy to have them here! We were able to spend more and more time outside this month. Many Willow friends show an interest in using various gardening tools to dig in the dirt and transport rocks and other natural elements. Inside the classroom, we continue to promote turn taking experiences. We have really fallen into a great routine of doing our morning greeting cards with shaker instruments followed by doing the Animal Freeze Dance song and the We are the Dinosaurs song before we eat breakfast!
The month of April was busy! The children enjoyed the baby theme as they all liked being independent and taking the baby’s out on walks in the strollers. We also focused on some building activities with pegboards. Allie got new instruments like a triangle and bells, and they all loved it! Of course we did many woods walks to find cool nature things and exploring. We said see you soon to teacher Abby as she will return in mid may and teacher Rebecca is with us until then.
For the upcoming month of May we will be focusing on a pond theme and nature theme. The room is all set up for exploration! There are many different things in a science area such as how a frog grows and snails as well. There is a habitat table full of sensory items and creatures. We will be singing songs like “3 Green and Speckled Frogs” during circle and doing some counting 1-5.
The Birch Room was incredibly busy during the month of April! With the welcoming of warmer weather and less outdoor gear needed (Yahoo! Except for that minor glitch of a snowstorm in mid-April,) there was lots to discover during the month. Our theme of the month had to do with everything Spring including flowers, gardening/growing vegetables, and bugs. The classroom welcomed some new centers including a Farmer’s Market Dramatic Play area, a sensory bin that was filled with beans (to act as soil,) flowers, gardening tools, and snakes. Also, our science center got an upgrade in the form of everything one would want to know about bugs including the life cycle of a butterfly made of colored pasta shapes, a build-an-insect station, and books with lots of bug facts for the growing mind. We also continued to explore the woods on an almost daily basis. We will soon be starting back up our weekly trip to the pond as well now that it isn’t frozen anymore. We also continued to visit Barry the Flamingo, the Rock Garden, and the “Swimming Pool!” On another high note, this month also saw the return of Bookmobile visits which we are all incredibly excited about! We will have a visit with Sueno at Mrs. Cranberry’s Fort every other week.
The month of May will bring a new theme into the classroom of Community Helpers. We will be learning all about what a Community Helper is as well as continuing to build on some of the newer learning skills we are working on such as patterns, sequencing, matching, and more. We hope you all enjoyed your April break and let’s continue to get psyched for the warmer weather that is sure to head our way very soon!
April has been a very creative month in the Oak Room. Everyone has enjoyed some sort of creative activity, from building in the Block Center to drawing elaborate pictures at the Writing Table. We have also explored building in the Sensory Table with sand and using various smaller blocks to make pictures and build. During this month, we have discussed lots of spring themes, like gardening, flowers, seeds, and insects. We finished the month discussing trees and will continue this theme into May. Another very popular center has been the Science Center, which includes seeds to sort, binoculars, and plastic insects. We even have a bird’s nest to explore. As the weather gets warmer we are excited to spend even more time outside, eating breakfast and lunch and having circle and small group in various places around the campus.
- May 4 – Happy Birthday Rebecca ELC Teacher Associate!
- May 7 – Charlotte T is 2!
- May 7 – Happy Birthday Jess, ELC Teacher Associate
- May 12 – Asher is 1!
- May 22 – Happy Birthday Amy N, Supervised Visitation Program Coordinator
- May 23 – Brooke is 5!
Dates to Remember
- The ELC will close at noon on Friday, May 14 for in-service
- The Center will be closed on Monday, May 31 for Memorial Day
- The ELC will close at noon on Friday, June 11 for in-service
- Click here for our Summer Calendar
- Annual fundraiser: Par for the Cause – June 26 & 27
Resources & Events for families
Families of eligible children will get a food benefit to help make up for missed free or reduced-price meals at school
The federal government has authorized the Vermont Department for Children and Families (DCF) and Agency of Education (AOE) to provide a temporary food benefit to preK-12 students who would normally receive free or reduced-price meals at school. These benefits are called Pandemic EBT or P-EBT. Households that currently get 3SquaresVT on an EBT card may be issued this additional benefit on their cards while pther households will be issued special P-EBT cards. P-EBT benefits may be used to buy eligible food items anywhere 3SquaresVT is accepted. Benefits will be active for a year from the date of issuance and are non-transferable. To learn more, read these Frequently-Asked Questions.
Also, it’s time to think about growing your own food. Did you know you can use your 3SquaresVT benefit to grow your garden, what a great way to get children involved? Growing some of your own food is an inexpensive way to put fresh food on your table all summer long. You can use your benefit to purchase fruit and vegetable seeds or starter plants at any retailer that accepts EBT cards
Campus trails open to public
Did you know that we have a network of trails through the campus forests that are open to the public from dawn to dusk? The children in the ELC know these trails well. Please feel free to explore! Click here for trail map