The experiences that take place in children's different living and learning environments have an impact on their development. The vast majority of children in Québec will visit an educational child care service regulated by the Ministère de la Famille at one time or another before they start school. It is a known fact that quality childcare services promote early childhood development. The Ministère defines orientations and produces tools and guidelines whose main principles can generally also apply to children's other environments.
Accueillir la petite enfance is an educational program that serves as the basis for sustaining the quality of childcare services [insert link to document]. It is used as reference for people working in day care centres. It also aims to promote the educational consistency between day cares and other sectors working with young children.
The other documents developed by the Ministère are guides intended for day care services to support children physical and motor development and promote the integration of special clienteles.
Creating environments conducive to physical and motor development
Educational child care services are living environments that first and foremost ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of the children in their care. When caring for young children, offering a varied, nutritional diet, having care and hygiene methods in place, and using safe equipment and tools, are crucial. To ensure optimal physical and motor development in children, day care services must ensure children move and are active at various times throughout the day.
Integrating special clienteles
Educational child care services aim to provide equal opportunities for all children. To achieve this, child care services must be accessible to children with special needs or who are underprivileged or part of a minority group. Integrating such children in a child care service is fulfilling for stakeholders and the other children, but it does bring about some challenges. The Ministère supports child care services in their role of welcoming and educating different children from all walks of life.
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