Child Care Comparison Checklist

When looking for a child care provider, know the right questions to ask

To make a confident decision in regards to care and education for your child, you need to know the right questions to ask.  Our Parent Checklist will provide a reference guide during your review process.  We recommend you use this checklist to ask questions and compare AppleTree/Gilden Woods Early Care and Preschool with other providers. 

We feature all of the items listed below and would love to show them to you when you schedule a tour.


  • Warm and inviting atmosphere
  • Greeted with a friendly smile
  • Warm, pleasant environment with soft paint tones to intrigue but not overstimulate children
  • All meals and snacks are provided (not formula or baby food)
  • Menu meets or exceeds USDA guidelines
  • Adequate classroom space available for varied activities
  • Staff are easily identified with uniforms and name tags
  • Teachers receive on-going training throughout the year
  • Low VOC emission carpet
  • Spacious, attractive, separate playgrounds for younger and older children
  • Personal storage cubby and nap bag provided to each child

Health & Safety

  • Caregivers/teachers are certified in First Aid and CPR
  • Restrooms and hand-washing facilities are easily accessible in each classroom
  • Webcam access to child's classroom
  • Secured entry doors with code access
  • Check-in/check-out procedure
  • Learning materials are age-appropriate and safe
  • All dangerous products (ex: medicines, chemicals) are out of reach of children
  • Smoke detectors and fire extinguishers are available
  • Severe weather, fire, and emergency drills are performed

Learning Environment

  • Program based on age-appropriate learning objectives
  • Teachers demonstrate positive communication with children
  • Developmentally-appropriate activities planned each day
  • Teachers interact with children at their level and in a way that maximizes learning
  • Planned schedule of activities is available
  • Infants and young children have separate environments
  • Infants have individualized lesson plans
  • Child assessments are used to guide instruction and conduct parent-teacher conferences

Interest Areas/Curriculum

  • Reading and literature areas
  • Dramatic play areas
  • Early math and problem-solving areas
  • Creative areas
  • Blocks/community awareness areas
  • Science/sensory areas
  • Computers equipped with age-appropriate software
  • Age-appropriate curriculum with engaging activities
  • Curriculum provides or both child-initiated and teacher-initiated activities
  • Critical pre-writing and pre-reading skills are practiced every day
  • Take-Home Readers are provided at every age to extend learning into your home

Parent Communication

  • Daily verbal communication between teachers and parents
  • Newsletters and memos are provided to parents
  • Parent-teacher conferences with child growth and progress reports
  • Many school events are offered for family involvement
  • Parents are informed of accidents and unusual incidents
  • Daily reports for communication available online in real time
  • Monthly Home Connection activities are provided

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