Child Learning Center elevates programs, facilities, playground to meet the needs of campus and community families
The Little Govs Child Learning Center (CLC), APSU’s child learning program, provided quality child care for children ages 2 to 5 years to 41 children. The center underwent a significant transformation during the year, completing major renovations in classrooms, the main entrance and the main office. The center staff and volunteers also completed much-needed additions to the playground area.
A fence was installed around the facility, adding curb appeal while providing additional safety for the children. In addition, through a partnership with Lowe’s, company employees donated their time and effort to build a porch on the playground. The porch protects bikes and tricycles from the weather.
The center launched a new Parent Advisory Committee comprised of APSU students, staff, faculty and community. In its initial work, the committee identified a need to establish communication between parents and additional methods to connect and update parents other than social media.
In addition to the physical improvements, the center provided a multitude of programs and activities for the children and their families. Highlights included:
» A workshop hosted by the Child Care Resource & Referral Network for both parents and children — children learned about different kinds of birds and made a homemade bird feeder.
» Grandparents Day: The children invited their grandparents to join them for an afternoon of refreshments, introduced them to their teachers and friends, and presented them with a small handmade gift.
» Community Involvement Week: Clarksville Police Department, Clarksville Fire Rescue and Patriot Family Dental each made special visits to the center for the children to learn more about safety and caring for themselves. The children checked out the CPD patrol cars and sounded the sirens.
» Halloween Day: Children participated in games and activities on the playground made possible through over 100 student, staff and family volunteers.
» The Pumpkin Patch: Each child handpicked a pumpkin to take home to decorate and bring back to the center to enter in the pumpkin decorating contest. Hayrides were available for all to enjoy in the CLC parking lot while children took turns picking their pumpkins.
» Lunch Box Workshop: Parents learned about easy, healthy but economical lunch options, important because parents provide their child’s lunch each day, and the children taste-tested the options.
» Scholastic Book Fair: The center received over $900 in free books to add to classrooms. The books were used to create a family lending reading library so families can check out books and read to their children at home.
» The CLC hosted its annual Egg Hunt in March. The children hunted for eggs and played a variety of outdoor games. Several families participated and donated eggs and candy. The center collaborated with the Department of Communication, the College of Education and the School of Nursing who volunteered to help with the event. Students assisted with painting faces, facilitating games and hiding eggs.
» The center forged partnerships with the departments of Music, Nursing, Health and Human Performance, the College of Education and Middle College to enhance the learning experience of the children and support parents.
» The children celebrated the holidays with a book exchange. Each child brought one wrapped book and then exchanged books with a classmate.
» Off-campus partnerships included Two Rivers Association for the Education of Young Children (TRAEYC), Tennessee Early Childhood Training Alliance (TECTA), Nashville State Community College (NSCC), Clarksville-Montgomery County Foster Grandparent Program, Montgomery County Pre-K Advisory, Family Support Disability Grant, Tennessee Promise and several others.
» In the spring the center celebrated the graduation of nine preschool children in the Morgan University Center with over 70 people in attendance. The graduates sang several tunes including “How Far I’ll Go” and “We’re Moving Up to Kindergarten.” Each child was presented with a certificate, a graduation video and a “Kindergarten Bound” T-shirt.
» The Little Govs Child Learning Center once again earned a 3 Star Quality program designation, the highest rating available. The CLC also holds the State of Tennessee Gold Sneaker designation. This initiative was developed to enhance policies related to health and wellness within licensed child care facilities across Tennessee and is a voluntary program. Services are available to APSU students, staff, faculty, alumni and the community.