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The Infant Program

Overview

The Laurel Hill infant program is a place where your baby will begin to establish a secure sense of self. With the support of caregivers, infants begin the lifelong process of exploration and learning. While always exposing every child to the full breadth of resources and activities available to them, we are sure to allow each child’s natural rhythms and temperament to determine his or her daily schedule. The infant program maintains a ratio of 3 infants to 1 caregiver.

The Curriculum

The Laurel Hill infant curriculum is bursting with sound, color, and texture, intended to catch and hold babies’ attention and keep them smiling as they learn! Our language-rich curriculum maximizes sensory stimulation and consistently offers brand-new, exciting experiences. Unlike other programs that provide their caregivers with a general outline of daily activities and then simply hope that there is time to include them, Laurel Hill’s caregivers are provided with specific, step-by step instructions for administering each aspect of the program. Your child’s learning is too important to leave up to chance!
The curriculum follows a detailed schedule that differs week to week. The schedule focuses on various developmental domains, including language development, tactile stimulation, and motor development. Every domain is addressed daily and activities within each domain reflect a central theme that unites all the domains. Multi-sensory experiences, exercise and dance movement, music, stories, language and more expand each theme activity.

Music and Movement:

Equipped with musical instruments, toys that make noise when manipulated, and toys that sing! Exposure to music stimulates babies desire to learn, creates feelings of excitement and enjoyment, and encourages babies’ desire to interact with others to follow, sing along and move along with music.

Language Development:

Plenty of board books, vinyl books, and picture card sets that our caregivers will show and read to each child. Daily exposure to reading aloud stimulates babies’ natural ability to acquire linguistic skills and is an essential element of our program.

Creative Arts & Exploration:

Equipped with a mirrored wall and photo books. Research has shown that infants are drawn to images of their own faces. Mirrors attract and sustain infants’ attention while helping them develop a sense of their own bodies and to orient themselves in space. Our mirrored wall also allows babies to maintain contact with caregivers even when they are not being held in their arms.

Gross Motor Play:

Stocked with activity walkers, large climbing mats, and push and pull play toys, encouraging development of gross motor skills including reaching, object transfer, head raising and sitting upright.

Fine Motor and Self-Help Skills Building:

Using objects such as stacking blocks and reaction toys, the center encourages the development of two skill sets. These include fine motor skills, such as grasping, raking with fingers to pick up objects, holding and manipulating objects, and self-help skills, including grasping and holding a bottle while feeding and pulling up to standing position.

Storytelling Center:

Builds upon our goal of maximizing opportunities for language development by exposing children to storybooks, puppets, and soft stuffed animals that can be manipulated to create engaging tales.

Watch Me Grow Scrapbook

In the Infant Room, babies take amazing strides every day! Your child’s progress toward developmental milestones and goals will be recorded in an individualized “Watch Me Grow” scrapbook, compiled and maintained by your baby’s caregivers. Scrapbooks are shared with parents three times a year, and can be treasured always as a keepsake from your child’s precious early years.

Progress Evaluation

In addition to daily chats together, parents and Laurel Hill maintain a daily written log – the Daily Baby Report. Each morning, parents complete the first part of the Daily Baby Report, describing their child’s sleep patterns, morning nutrition, and any other information the caregiver will need for the day. As the day progresses, caregivers complete the Daily Baby Report, noting feedings, diapering, naps, daily activities and temperament. The Daily Baby Report is reviewed with each parent at pickup time.

Practical Matters – Hygiene, Nutrition and Security

Every aspect of our Infant Program is designed to protect children’s health and safety,and maintaining rigorous hygiene in the Infant Room is an essential element of this goal. Laurel Hill procedures include . . .

  • Building and classroom security for arrival, dismissal and pick-up of children
  • Full-time nurse on duty
  • Childproofed cupboards, electrical outlets and door knobs
  • Finger guards on all entry and exit door edges
  • Toss-away shoe covers
  • Regular sanitizing of toys, floors and play, work and service areas
  • Frequent laundering of bedding, washcloths and bibs
  • Protective gloves worn by staff for diapering and other personal baby needs
  • Changing table liners discarded after single use
  • Frequent hand washing in classroom sink
  • Complete sanitation procedures for safely storing food and removing waste

Welcome Back To School

Planning For A Healthy School Year

The gates to 2020-2021 are swinging open to welcome our Laurel Hill students and parents back!  It’s the event we have all been waiting for.  Although the good news is very recent, we have been preparing for a long time.  

For the past four decades we at Laurel Hill School have had the privilege of serving our local community by providing excellence in education. We have been overwhelmed by your positive comments regarding your children’s experience at LHS during quarantine.  Your glowing reviews of the program we developed  and  your appreciation of our dedicated faculty have been uplifting. We salute you for standing by LHS at this most difficult juncture.

Laurel Hill has always offered gifts far beyond the fun and excitement that fill each child’s day!  New experiences and strong relationships help our students become more confident, strengthen their capabilities and build their character.  These, however, are challenging times that require a comprehensive and thoughtful approach. 

We at LHS are committed to meeting these challenges and to fully embracing our responsibility to each of our students, staff members, and parents.  We understand that each parent is concerned, more than ever, about the health and welfare of their children and about our plans for the year.  We want you to know that we hear you and that we are fully committed to a thoughtful and comprehensive response to the current situation and to helping reduce uncertainty as much as possible.

Welcome Back To School!


Parent Bravos

Here is a small sample of some of the  beautiful comments from our Parents about our Distance Learning Program.

From a 6th Grade Parent:

Dear Mr and Mrs Stark,
And all our wonderful LHS teachers! We want to support all parents in sending our deepest gratitude for giving our kids some sense of normalcy during these very challenging times.
It’s very important for us to know that while my husband, as many other ICU doctors and nurses, are fighting every day with this vicious disease, our children can still follow their routine, learn, and communicate with their teachers and friends. It helps us, parents, and it definitely helps kids to continue their growth as individuals.
I see excitement in (our daughter’s) eyes when she is getting ready for school in the morning, when she is running to the printer to get an assignment, or just talking to her friends during breaks.
Thank you so much to every single one of you!
 
 

From a 3YR Old Parent:

“We wanted to say thank you for accommodating the preschool families with the tuition suspension during this time.
We are also amazed (and truly grateful) that the zoom on- line learning format is continuing despite the circumstances.
I know this is not an easy time for businesses, organizations etc. If there is anything at all we can do to help the school during this time or once we return, please let us know. Maybe a fundraiser or maybe there is something we can do for our individual teachers. Just brainstorming…
Finally, some thoughts as we’ve entered week 3 of zoom/on-line learning. It’s been such a wonderful experience participating in our kids’ learning! Yes managing working from home and helping with homeschool can be exciting… but I’ve enjoyed seeing firsthand how dedicated our teachers are to not only teaching and providing additional resources to enhance learning, but also doing it with such great enthusiasm.
 There’s a great sense of community and collaboration between administration, teachers and parents, and it is evident that our main goal is how to make this experience the best it can possibly be.
How lucky are we to have such amazingly dedicated teachers in our kids’ lives! How blessed are we to be part of the
Laurel Hill family!
In the midst of chaos you have given us a sense of normalcy and we are genuinely appreciative of all your efforts.
 
 

 

 
 
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HERE IS WHAT WE KNOW….
THESE ARE EXTRAORDINARY TIMES
 HERE IS WHAT WE ARE SURE OF…
TOGETHER WE SHALL PERSEVERE
As Charles Dickens famously observed…
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times . . .
it was the season of darkness,
it was the spring of hope . . .
We at Laurel Hill live “the best of times” every day because we are blessed by the beauty, by the serene innocence, and by the precocity of our boys and girls.
We at Laurel Hill live “the best of times” every day for the blessing of totally dedicated teachers and support staff who clearly know why they selected to do what they do in career and in life and give, and give, and give tirelessly to fulfill their greatest ambitions for their children’s growth and well being.
We at Laurel Hill live “the best of times” because we are blessed to have families joined with us to support and to build – partners in turning great ideas into great accomplishments, partners ready to share their skills and to help in the work that needs to be done.
 
IN THEIR OWN WORDS
 
FROM A TEACHER….
Ms. Bond’s Zoom Classroom
Never in my teaching career would I have thought that I would need to teach elementary class via online classes. Yet, here we are in uncertain times, teaching in a media platform that is geared towards the children of this generation.
As apprehensive as I was before the first day of Zoom (I woke up a number of times during the night like it was my first day of school!), I now feel energized and excited about what we are able to do with the Zoom program. I’ve found that I’ve been able to keep most of my teaching the same as when it is a live class! In Reading, we’ve done an author study and vocabulary work in just three days! I am so proud of how much hard work my students continue to do while they are at home!
FROM A PARENT…..
I hope this email finds you well and safe. I have been thinking about you & Mr. Stark often and must first apologize for the time lapse in reaching out to express my deepest gratitude. I can’t believe that we have just completed 3 weeks of successful and engaging remote learning. Your steadfast leadership at the onset of this crisis was inspiring. As this crisis turned into a nationwide tragic pandemic, your engaging and detailed remote learning program did not waiver. In fact, it strengthened! Our children were the lucky ones to maintain a sense of normalcy with their routine schedule and engaging “live” classes with all of their treasured teachers and classmate friends.

View additional parent testimonials and all other news updates by visiting Laurel Hill In the News.