Day Care 't Olefantje is a warm and homely care and offers parents and children a familiar and cosy environment. It is important to us that children can develop, grow, feel safe and above all have lots of fun.
We strive to ensure that parents, children and our teachers feel at ease in a cosy and warm atmosphere. Because we are small, we know all parents and the communication between parents, children, teachers and managers is very open. We have a nice and committed team with permanent employees and permanent substitutes. This ensures tranquillity and continuity in the groups. It is important for children, but also for parents to hand over their child into trusted hands every time.
Together with our educational team, we have drawn up a vision in which we make clear what we think is important for our children and why. In order to guarantee this, we get together as a team on a regular basis. We discuss together what we can do better and where we need to make adjustments. In this way, we continue to inspire each other to take the education of the children entrusted to us seriously.
We offer tailor-made education. This means that we look at all children individually and respond to their needs. Each child receives personal attention so that they can develop at their own pace. We do not have a clearly defined picture of how a child should become and what the right approach is. Each child has their own personality and it is that personality that makes each child so unique and wonderful. In order to maintain this individuality, it is important for the child to develop self-confidence. We trust that when a child is given plenty of love, space and structure, they will grow up as an individual with self-confidence.
Of course, we realise that in day care, children have to deal with a group, so personal attention is different to that received at home. But in a group, it is often easier to learn structure: after all, children often imitate each other.
In our Educational Policy, which you can download here, you can read more about our vision and way of working.
Day Care 't Olefantje Nieuwegracht consists of five horizontal groups:
Green: This group has a maximum of eleven children from 6 weeks to 24 months, who are cared for by two or three teachers. The teachers of this green group are Rebecca, Meryem, Esmee and Nathalie.
Red: This group has a maximum of nine children from 6 weeks to 24 months, who are cared for by two teachers. The teachers of this group are Jolanda, Moos and Cassandra.
Blue:This group has a maximum of sixteen children from one to four years, who are cared for by two or three teachers (depending on the legal professional-to-child ratio). The teachers of the blue group are Kim, Daisy, Muhsine and Manuela.
Pink large:This group has a maximum of sixteen children from two to four years, who are cared for by up to three teachers. The regular teachers of the toddler group are Simone, Kim, Michelle and Kim.
Pink small:This group has a maximum of five children from two to four years, who are alternately cared for by Michelle, Kim and Simone.
We base our approach on six interaction skills. These interaction skills are briefly explained below using a number of examples.
1. Sensitive responsiveness. We pay close attention to children’s signals and what is on their minds. We encourage them when they are interested and enthusiastic. We try to verbalise what they feel and ask about their feelings and thoughts. We talk with the children and not to the children. We do this by sitting with the children on the ground (eye level) and by asking them regularly for their opinion. If possible, we consider the input of the children, or explain why it is not possible to do this. We also involve the parents to find out if a child does not feel understood or heard.
2. Respect for the autonomy of the child. We encourage the children to do as much as possible themselves. We let them discover for themselves and offer them the opportunity to choose for themselves. We ask them to think along with us about plans, solutions and activities. We offer all children the space to be themselves. This means that in addition to fun joint activities, a child can also play alone when they want to. We also give the child the space to have their own (autonomous) emotions. Of course, we strive for cheerful and happy children, but we also find that they can be angry or sad. By observing the children and discussing details with each other and parents, we can help children quickly when they run into something. If necessary, we make arrangements for extra supervision for the child. Think of the birth of a new brother or sister or the frustration that may be felt by a child going through a developmental leap. We adjust the daily programme or daily routine if this is in the child's best interest.
3. Structuring and setting boundaries. We offer structure and continuity. For example, we have a fixed daily schedule and permanent teachers. We state the rules and agreements in the group and explain why we have these rules and agreements. We offer an alternative in case of undesirable behaviour, for example “Can you ask if you can play with that, instead of grabbing it?” in order to steer the children in a more positive direction. We convey important values and norms to the children by setting a good example ourselves. For example, we wait to eat until everyone has something to eat, we do not talk over each other, we are nice to each other and we consider one another.
4. Talking and explaining. We continuously use situations to talk with the children. We supplement these conversations with extra information and repeat what the children say in the right words. We explain what we do and why. We name what the children see and do. We read to the children interactively. We do this by asking open questions during the reading or by engaging them in conversations about the subjects of the books.
5. Development stimulation We encourage the development of the children in different ways. We ask ourselves out loud how something works, or why something happens in a certain way. We make stimulating statements such as “your boots will probably fit me too”. Where possible, we encourage the children to do things themselves. Think about getting dressed or making a sandwich themselves. We speak using varied language and just above the level of the children in order to offer them as wide a range of languages as possible.
6. Guiding (positive) interactions between children We make sure that children feel safe and at ease with each other. We notice interactions between children and respond positively to (spontaneous) positive contact between children. We encourage conversations between the children and not only between the children and the teachers. We consciously create situations where children play together, share and help each other. The children often play in small groups and because of this, they feel safer. We teach the children to communicate both verbally and non-verbally with us and the other children. So, we encourage the children to look at others and respond to them.
All our teachers are qualified for the position of educational worker according to the CLA for Childcare. In addition, they have a genuine interest in children and can create an atmosphere that is pleasant, safe and feels like home. In order to be able to follow the development of the children well, all children have a mentor in the group. This is one of the teachers who works in the group and is assigned to the child. The mentor is the main point of contact for the parents and regularly discusses the development and well-being of the child with the parents.
We are a recognised internship company and like to work with interns. The interns are always under our supervision. In the end, they perform the same tasks as the teachers, but do not yet bear final responsibility.
We like to have interns who do an internship with us for at least one school year. Advanced interns can be engaged as professionals if their level of education allows it. This is pleasant for the children because it offers continuity.
We work with as many permanent, enthusiastic substitutes as possible. Some substitutes or interns also look after parents, making it extra familiar for the children and parents.
We invest a lot of time in the teachers and interns and are happy to offer them the opportunity to continue their development through training and courses. In addition, they all have a child-oriented first aid certificate.
The time needed to adjust is different for each child. While your child is adjusting, please ensure that you are available the first day and on call for the next few days. This only concerns parents of new children. Children generally adjust to the care three times before they start. The adjustment arrangements are made in consultation with the parents and generally take place in the month before the official placement. During the first adjustment appointment, there is generally also an intake meeting with the parents. Here general information about the care and important information about the child is discussed.
For new children in the toddler groups, adjustment is arranged in consultation with the parents. This is because it can be very different for each child.
When a child moves internally from one group to another, the teachers make agreements with each other. The parents are of course informed about this. In general, children, accompanied by their regular teacher, go three times to adjust and participate in the new group.
You can find more about the adjustment procedure in our Educational Policy.
Health & Safety
We strive to provide children and employees with the safest and healthiest possible work, play and living environments where children are protected from risks with serious consequences and learn to deal with minor risks. The risks within our care do not belong to the management, but to all of us. Our teachers and interns are actively involved in identifying and evaluating unsafe or unhealthy situations and are also involved in the actions that are taken. In this way, we ensure that we continuously learn from practice.
Here you can access the Safety and Health Policy of Day Care 't Olefantje. This Policy Plan indicates how we work at our location.