Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Essentials for Safe Nursery and Preschool Classrooms - Screening and Check-in/out

I've talked about the components of a safe Nursery and reviewed a number of furnishings, equipment and toys. I also want to focus on the essentials for a safe nursery and give some ideas of how to utilize these items on a shoestring budget.

What do you think of when you think of your nursery and preschool classrooms as well as the resources you'd like to have? If I had an unlimited budget and the space for the "perfect classroom", I know there are some awesome resources I'd love to offer children. Unfortunately, our budget doesn't allow for those things, so which resources are essential elements for a truly effective ministry and yet are "do-able" on a shoestring budget?

Infants, toddlers, and preschoolers have certain needs, and those needs help us determine what is truly essential in these ministries. The top areas you need to consider for your classroom are safety, classroom aids, teaching aids, and visual aids so we'll look at each of these areas in the coming week.

Today let's look once again at safety. Consider the following . . . 
  • The first level of security in our nursery and children's ministry involves screening everyone who has access to the children. As I've mentioned, take a look at Reducing the Risk - it is an excellent resource and covers pretty much everything you need to know about screening volunteers and making your ministry as safe as you can. Be absolutely certain you have screened each and every person who has access to the children in your ministry. Put in place sound policies regarding your volunteer to child ratio, age of volunteers, training volunteers and be sure you have a policy regarding unsupervised children as well. You are responsible to make your ministry a safe place for children. Take this responsibility seriously. 
  • The second safety essential is to be sure you have some kind of check-in/check-out procedure when children arrive and leave. Find something which will work for your church and use it for every child every time. 
In my next post, I'll look at some additional levels of safety which are "essentials"!

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