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3 Year Anniversary!




I cannot believe I'm writing a blog post for our 3rd year as a childcare center. When Parvanah and I both left our current jobs we loved and took a leap of faith into creating our own childcare center it was absolutely terrifying. Sitting here typing this, reflecting back on the last 3 years is hard to put into words.


One thing we never expected would EVER happen, was running a childcare during a worldwide pandemic. Nothing could have prepared us for this. After hearing of daycare after daycare closing their doors, we are so grateful and thankful that we are still able to come to work every single day, living our passion, and getting to provide high quality childcare to the families we serve.


Before I ramble to far, let's take a look at a few of the highlights from this last year...


Parties and Celebrations

We got to enjoy lots of themed parties and activities! We had so much fun at our annual Halloween party, enjoyed our Grinch party during the holiday season, celebrated Valentines Day with a Peace & Love Tie Dye party, and had lots of rhyming fun during Dr.Seuss week! Our friends at school also got to celebrate their first pizza party and movie day which they earned by filling up their classroom marble jar.





HERO UP FOR ELI!

We had the unfortunate experience of one of our children being diagnosed with Leukemia. It was so painful, and we were left feeling helpless for his family. This was an incredibly scary and difficult situation, but it was absolutely amazing to watch the families of the center and the whole community of Newport and surrounding towns come together to raise funds for this family. Together, we raised just over $8,000. We are happy to say that Eli is currently doing well!


A NEW location in Charleston!


We were so excited when we saw that another childcare was up for sale in Charleston, right on the Corinth line. Even though it wasn't the best timing with Covid, we had faith and we decided now was a good time to try to expand our business as we know there is such a high need in rural areas. With a lot of help from close friends and family, and long nights and weekends, we were able to quickly renovate and turn that center into our own! We are amazed at the welcoming arms that we were met with from the parents of the children who had already attended the center. We are also proud to say that we are officially FULL as of this summer and are currently taking applications for our waiting list. Still want a spot? We are hoping to have even better news about expansion at this center which are in the works... Keep an eye and ear out for more information!!





Urban Air Jump Day

Once the Covid fog started to lift a bit, we decided that the families and children of our center needed a day full of fun! We rented out Urban Air for a few hours on the weekend and invited our families from both Newport and Charleston to join us! It was so much fun to be able to mingle with parents, and watch the children play and get lots of energy out in a Covid safe manner.



Sensational Busy Boxes

We decided that we wanted to come up with a way to raise funds for outdoor equipment, keep parent costs down, and bring a part of what the children do here at school to their homes so that the fun, learning, and opportunity for development never stops. Our first month we started with a super fun Space theme, followed by a Spring and Ocean theme. It has been so much fun for us to make these, and we have slowly but surely been making improvements to our outdoor environment! By selling these boxes we were able to fund a new fenced area for our infants and waddlers, artificial grass for the area, and we will be making updates to our Pre School/ Toddler outside area very soon! Keep an eye out monthly for new themes and boxes! They are $25 and come in a reusable and stackable container for storage!





Occupational Therapy Practice is Growing

Last year during Covid the OT side of things wasn't looking the greatest. It was very difficult to attempt to schedule Zooms and keep close communication with families. However, this year slowly but surely, Occupational Therapy has begun to grow! As more families understand the purpose of OT and see positive changes in their children once they start the word has begun to spread! At Sensational Minds: Early Learning Academy LLC, we pride ourselves in being an inclusive environment. That means we are a neurodiverse center who appreciates and understands that children who are diagnosed with Autism, ADHD, Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, Attachment Disorders, etc. require different types of strategies and environmental changes in order to be successful at our center. We accept these children with open arms and work closely with families to develop plans to help set everyone up for success. Part of that plan is often Occupational Therapy services to help children learn to regulate their sensory systems, develop fine motor skills and much, much more.


A HUGE thank you to our staff

All in all, it has been a wild ride this past year but we are appreciative of our families for being so flexible, and most importantly our staff for being accommodating, patient, and loyal to our center. We have had so many positive staff changes this year and we can truly say we have the strongest staff roster we've ever had right now. Our teachers constantly put in hours of work at home, work through breaks (even though we tell them not too), and go above and beyond to not only present educational material to the children, but make it fun and engaging. We can confidently say that to our staff, this isn't just a job. It's a passion. Working with children all day every day is not an easy feat. It's hard and can be incredibly exhausting, but it is also one of the most rewarding jobs out there. To see the lightbulbs go off, the changes made, and to know that we are a positive impact on a child's day- it makes every challenging minute worth it. So thank you, to our staff, because without you we wouldn't be where we are today.


Pictured below is most of our staff! (A few were absent for photos)


Pre School Staff:


Toddler Staff:


Infant/Waddler Staff:


Plans for the Future

It's hard to look forward an entire year, but we definitely have plans in the making! We have been incredibly busy now that OT is booming and we have a second center, but we aren't stopping there! We may or may not have some plans in the work which include increasing our capacity in our Charleston center ;)... But we'll let you know more as more information comes. We are also going to be working on submitting our official documentation so that we can officially become a Step 4 center in the Maine Roads To Quality system and QRIS system. This means that parents would be able to get a double tax credit for their childcare costs, and it also means that we will hopefully be able to get nationally accredited. We want to continue to prove to the community that we CARE about the quality of services we provide. Lastly, we want to continue to focus on inclusion and expand the services that we are able to provide for children. Right now, the only service outside of childcare we provide for children is Occupational Therapy. We are going to do our best to add to that over the next year, and to continue to educate staff so that they are as prepared as possible to appropriately care for all types of children.


Thank you to all

Last, Parvanah and I would like to specifically thank our spouses and family for their support over the last 3 years. We wouldn't have been able to do it without you. We know that it often takes up a lot of time, late nights, and busy weekends and we appreciate your support through it all. And thank you to the families of our centers for trusting in us to provide quality childcare. We couldn't have a business without you, and we hope you understand how committed we are to giving your child the best experience possible while they're here and in our care.


Thank you, thank you, thank you.


Here's to another great year ahead!

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