Learn, Grow, and Thrive

Y Early Education programs are enriching and positive places that nurture children to explore, discover, and learn so they are school ready. 

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Washington State Early Achievers

All Y Early Education programs voluntarily participate in the Washington State Early Achievers Program. Early Achievers is building a state-wide system of high quality early learning by bringing families, early learning professionals, and resources together to support each child’s learning and development.

Program Mission

Every child and family in Washington has access to an anti-racist welcoming early learning setting that provides high-quality, responsive services so that they may thrive. 

Program Framework

Early Achievers is a framework for improving the quality of early care in Washington to ensure that:

  • Children have access to high-quality early learning experiences that help them develop the skills they need to be successful in school and beyond.
  • Families can find high-quality child care and early learning programs that fit their needs by providing evidence-based information about facility quality.
  • Early learning professionals have access to the resources and supports they need to provide quality care that supports each child’s learning and development.

 

Healthy Eating & Physical Activity

Healthy Eating and Physical Activity (HEPA) teaches children how to make healthy food choices and to enjoy physical activity, contributing to their social and physical development. At the Y, we have adopted these standards into our child care programs: 

  • Role Modeling: Y staff will model healthy eating and active living.

  • Family Engagement: Engage parents and caregivers using informational materials and activities focused on healthy eating and physical activity a minimum of once per quarter.

  • Physical Activity: Ensure that children engage in at least 30 minutes of physical activity for half-day programs and 60 minutes for full-day programs, including a mix of moderate and vigorous physical activities that promote bone and muscle strengthening. Play will take place daily outdoors whenever possible.

  • Screen Time: Eliminate screen time for children under two years of age. For children over two, screen time is limited to less than 30 minutes per day for children in half-day programs and less than one hour per day for those in full-day programs. 

  • Food: Serve fruits or vegetables at every meal and snack. Children serve themselves (family-style). No partially hydrogenated oils (trans fat), fried, or pre-fried foods. Serve whole grains when grains are served. Serve foods free of sugar as one of the first three ingredients or less than eight grams of added sugar. 

  • Beverages: Offer water at the table during every meal and accessible at all times. Serve only water and plain, low-fat (one percent) or non-fat milk.

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