School Age Child Care

The Basics of Good School Age Care

Families should select the type of care that best suits their needs and preferences. However, all quality school age programs share these characteristics:

  • A warm and attractive atmosphere which is inviting to children.
  • A variety of structured and unstructured activities including outdoor activities, creative activities and quiet activities.
  • Opportunities for children to make choices.
  • Time and space to be with friends and to be alone.
  • Adults who treat children with warmth and respect and who set  clear and fair limits.

Trust your intuition and observations. The checklist below will help guide you in your observations.

Observation Checklist

☐ Indoor and outdoor areas are clean and safe.
☐ There is a place for children to store their personal belongings.
☐ A variety of age appropriate toys, books, materials and equipment are available.
☐ Discipline is handled in a gentle, but firm manner.
☐ Rules are clear, simple and consistent.
☐ Children are not expected to sit quietly or wait for long periods of time.
☐ Planned activities are not an extension of the actual school day, but rather, offer children recreational activities.
☐ Children have opportunities to make choices.
☐ Parents are welcome at any time, without prior notice.
☐ Children and parents are greeted warmly.
☐ Children look happy, active and occupied.
☐ Field Trips and enrichment activities are offered.
☐ Caregivers have training specific to school age children.
☐ A nutritious snack is offered after school.


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