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And Preschool?


What is the ratio of staff to children?  Each of our smaller preschool classrooms have a ratio of up to 10 students with one teacher. The larger preschool classroom is licensed for 20 children, with the same child to teacher ratio.   At times, an additional staff member may join a class.  This enables us to provide a good deal of attention to the individual needs of each child.


Does a child need to be potty trained to enter the Preschool Program?   Should a child of pre-school age (over 2 years, 9 months) enroll at Four Seasons Creative Learning Center who isn’t yet potty trained, we will work with the parents to assist the child in this developmental milestone.


Do I need to pack a lunch and snacks?   Four Seasons provides both morning and afternoon snack, as well as whole milk and water upon request. Parents provide their child’s lunch – which can be heated in our classroom microwave. A refrigerator is available to store lunches.


Please note that FSCLC is a NUT FREE CENTER.  As a substitute for peanut butter, we recommend Sun Butter – made from sunflower seeds.


How about nap time?   Four Seasons provides nap mats/cots for napping, along with a small bag in which nap supplies are stored.  Parents provide a crib-sized sheet (and blanket) which will be sent home every week for cleaning.


Do you need for me to bring any supplies?   Please bring these items to Four Seasons for your child and please write your child’s name on each item:


  • At least two changes of clothing that includes a shirt, pants, underwear and socks.

  • A sweater or sweatshirt just in case it’s cool in the mornings or afternoons.

  • A crib sheet and light blanket for sleeping. (nap supplies are sent home every week for laundering and are returned on Monday).


When should I expect my child to move from one preschool room to the next?   Children transition from the Buttercups to Sprouts at approximately 3-1/2  years, and from there to the Sunflowers at approximately 4 year of age.  These transitions occur if there is an opening and if the child is developmentally ready. When the decision to move a child is being made, parents will be informed and given an opportunity to meet with new caregivers. As part of the transition process, children will make several visits to the new room, accompanied by caregivers they know. 


How many staff per child?    The Sprouts Room maxes out at 10 children and follows follows the MA regulations at 1:10 .  Our Preschool Room holds up to 20 children and follows the same Teacher to Student Ratio .  Once 11 children are in the classroom, an additional staff member is included.


When can I come for a tour?  We love to show off our school! Call anytime to schedule a tour. 

On to the Toddlers .....


What are the ratios of teachers to children?  In both Toddler Rooms, the ratio of teachers to children is 1:4.  We never have more than nine children in either room and always schedule two teachers (sometimes three) as soon as attendance reaches 5 children. This enables us to provide a good deal of attention to the individual needs of each child.


What are the ages of the children in the Toddler Programs?    The children in the Waddler Group range in age from approximately 15 months to 24 months.  Then they hop the gate to the older room where they remain until they are approximately 33-36 months of age.


What are some activities my child will enjoy?   Toddlers are a fascinating developmental group. Some of the younger children may still have characteristics of infants (they are babbling, needing to be fed, etc.) and some have characteristics of toddlers  (starting to say words, eating independently, etc.) The Toddler caregivers are expert at meeting the needs of this diverse and interesting group!


Keeping their developmental levels in mind, caregivers plan a variety of activities for the children and each day includes: art activities (coloring, painting, gluing), music and movement, story time (both group and individual), water and sand table play, playdough, puzzles and other manipulative toys, and free play. The children go outdoors to the small playground each day, weather permitting, to climb, dig in the sand and play with outdoor toys. Using our walking rope, the group will occasionally go for walks to enjoy the sights and sounds of the  area .


How do you serve snacks and lunch?   The children sit as a group for meals and there is a good deal of adult interaction. Special attention is given to ensure their nutritional needs are met: staff will feed children, will help to feed them as they become more independent with eating, and will encourage them to learn how to feed themselves. Please refer to the “Meals” section in Parent Handbook for specific food guidelines.


SPECIAL FOOD NEEDS – health or allergy related, nutritional, religious, or cultural, will be accommodated. The most important factor in special situations is to discuss these needs with administrators and caregivers.  Four Seasons Creative Learning Center is a NUT-FREE CENTER.  At no time are nuts or nut oils of any kind allowed at FSCLC.  For a peanut butter substitute, we recommend Sun Butter (made from sunflower seeds).


How are children’s diaper changes handled?  Children’s diapers are changed every two-to-three hours or when needed.  The younger classroom has a changing table inside the classroom.  The older children are brought to the bathroom for potty learning and for diaper changes.  Parents provide all diapering supplies and will be asked to sign a form giving us permission to apply topical creams or lotions. Diapers, wipes and diaper creams are stored near the changing table.


Do you need for me to bring any supplies?    Please bring these items to Four Seasons for your child and please write your child’s name on each item:


  • At least two changes of clothing that includes a shirt, pants, onesie or undershirt and socks (Waddlers are a messy bunch).   A sweater or sweatshirt just in case it’s cool in the building or outside.

  • Diapering supplies including diapers, wipes and diaper ointment or cream. It is advisable to bring in a large pack of diapers and as you run low on diapering supplies, you will receive a note asking you to bring in additional items.

  • A crib sheet and light blanket for sleeping. (nap supplies are sent home every week for laundering and should be returned on Monday).  These will be kept in a nap bag, supplied by Four Seasons.

  • 4-5 sippy cups.  As per MDEEC regulations, we are not allowed to rinse and re-fill cups.  Please label them with your child’s name.  Sippies will be sent home every day for cleaning.  Children in the older room will be using small paper cups for beverages.  No sippies are allowed in the older room.


What about pacifiers?   We do allow pacifiers, but only at rest time - or if the child is having a rough time and needs some "paci" comfort.  The logic behind this is that some children in this age group are prone to "mouthing" anything and everything they get their hands on!  No pacifiers during the regular part of the day alleviates any issues with "sharing" pacifiers.


Do you potty train in the toddler room?   Yes!  Four Seasons’ policy on potty-training is to encourage children to use the potty if they show interest. Children do not have to be potty-trained to enter the program. We will work with you to provide consistent potty-training and our teachers are very knowledgeable about the best methods. When they notice your child is beginning to show interest in the potty, or if you want to begin training, we can set up a meeting with you to talk about how we can work together to make this time fun and easy for you and your child.


Specific to Infants:

You have questions?  We have answers!


How do you communicate with parents?  We have a Parent Communication Board outside each classroom that is filled out daily by the child’s lead teacher, giving general information about the day.  We also send out a monthly newsletter that includes tidbits about each classroom, reminders about upcoming events, and articles relevant to the age group.   


In addition, we have both a public and private Facebook page which is updated regularly.  The private page is for enrolled families, by invitation only.  Parents must sign permission for their child’s photo to be posted on either Facebook page or the website.


Do you have Parent-Teacher conferences? We schedule Parent Conferences for each family once a year, usually in winter. This conference is with the parents (and other significant care-givers if desired), the child’s lead teacher and the Preschool Director.  If at another time there are issues that are of concern either to parents, teachers or both, a conference is scheduled. A parent can request a conference at any time.  Assessments are completed twice yearly - usually November and May.


How can I reach Four Seasons during the time my child is at the center? We have phone lines directly into each classroom so parents can call any time during the day and ask how their child is doing, and the staff can also call the parents if we have any questions or concerns.  Parents are always welcome to call the main number as well.


What about meals?   Infant parents provide their child’s meals and snacks.  Once transitioning to the toddler program, Four Seasons provides both a morning and afternoon snack, as well as whole milk and water upon request. (Organic whole milk is provided at an additional cost of $2/week).  Parents of toddlers and preschoolers provide their child’s lunch – which, if necessary, can be heated in our classroom microwave. A refrigerator is available to store lunches.


Please note that FSCLC is a NUT FREE CENTER.  

As a substitute for peanut butter, we recommend Sun Butter – made from sunflower seeds. 

What is the Four Seasons procedure for enrolling a new child?      After you have taken a tour of Four Seasons and decide that you would like your child to enroll, we will do our best to find you a space that fits your schedule.  We will send you home with paperwork that will need to be returned on your child’s first day in the program. Included in this paperwork are forms explaining our policies and questionnaires to get a better idea of what your child likes, dislikes, what will comfort him/her, eating habits and so forth.


I only want a part-time schedule, will that be possible?  We offer 2-5 day schedules. However, we do not offer partial days at this time. Let the Director know what schedule will best fit your needs and we will do our best to accommodate you.


How do you handle payments?  We accept cash, checks and venmo.  Unfortunately, credit cards are not an option at this time.  Tuition is due the Friday morning before the child attends and is due by 9am.  Any late payments are subject to a $25 late fee.


Tell me about your staff.  We know that consistency is very important to a child’s well-being. We do our best to provide our teachers with competitive benefits and salaries which we feel helps to maintain a strong staff with minimal turnover. Our teachers come from every walk of life,many with college degrees, bringing with them their own unique experiences and interests. Four Seasons counts itself as fortunate to have staff that works as well collectively, as they do individually, to create the most nurturing atmosphere for the children in our care. We all have a love for children that inspires us everyday.

Are you able to warm my baby's bottle in a bottle warmer?  No, we are not. The Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care has specific guidelines as to warming bottles. We are not allowed to use any sort of warmers, microwaves, crockpots or stove top warming. The most we can do is hold the bottle under running water or place it in a container filled with warm water - and regulations state the water can be no warmer than 120 degrees.


What is the ratio of teachers to children?   The ratio is one teacher to three children (1:3). Four Seasons is licensed for three infants in our smaller classroom and  seven infants in the other.  We have two caregivers as soon as we have four children in the room. There are other staff available for help in the center should the teachers require assistance, so sometimes the ratio is lower.


What will my child do during the day?   Most of the time is spent in their routine care: eating, sleeping, holding, rocking. We work hard not to interrupt their bottle feeding time which is a time of bonding, and quiet, calm for them to eat and have a real experience of being nourished, in ways other than just the bottle. As they get older they will spend more time involved with the toys and materials and exploring with various age-appropriate activities. We play music as an environmental background and we have musical instruments. We enjoy water play and sensory experiences with a variety of materials. We take the children out doors in stroller rides. We spend time on the playground where the older infants can play with push/pull toys, play in the sandbox or in the playhouse or climber.


What about breastfeeding, can I come during the day?  We welcome breastfeeding moms to come any time of the day. As children grow and change we work closely with the parents to monitor their eating habits.


What kind of schedule will my child have? In our in-take interview with the parents, we cover your child’s routine and patterns of behaviors. You provide the input with how they eat and sleep, how they get soothed. This information we combine with our own observations to set up the child’s schedule according do their current rhythms.


When does an infant transition into the Toddler Room?  Depending on the child and availability, we can transition the child into the Toddler Room as early as 12 months and as late as 18 months old. We prefer the infant be sure on his/her feet and able to feed himself/herself. There is also the element of the child’s emotional readiness, which is determined by the teachers and parents.




Childhood is the most beautiful of all life's seasons.

                    - Unknown 

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