strongstart

Participate with your young child (aged birth to five) in a free, play-based program. StrongStart BC programs provide rich learning environments designed for early learning development – language, physical, cognitive, social, and emotional. Qualified early childhood educators employed by the Langley School District lead learning activities where children find opportunity to make friends and interact with others of similar ages.

The overall learning experience is shared as parents and caregivers attend with their children and are encouraged to get involved in activities like telling stories, playing games, and serving healthy snacks. Join us to learn new ways to support your children’s learning, get information about community programs and services, and make valuable connections with others attending the program. Centres are open Mondays through Fridays, except on school holidays and Pro-D days. In the event of inclement weather or power outages, call the school before you come or check school websites.

At no cost to families, StrongStart is offered at nine Langley locations. See locations listed in the Frequently Asked Questions below.

The Early Learning Department is pleased to announce the District will continue to offer the StrongStart program for the 2021/2022 school year, taking direction from the Ministry of Education and Provincial Health Office. Drop-in sessions will start Monday, September 27, with a maximum of 20 visitors in the centre. All sessions will be 2.5 hours, and facilitators will offer a minimum of one outdoor session per week.

Please review the following information below to help you and your family plan your child’s early learning opportunities.

  • Provincial COVID-19 Health and Safety Guidelines for StrongStart 2021-2022

    • Mask wearing for all staff and adult visitors when indoors.
    • Parents/caregivers completing the Daily Health Check before attending with their child. Please refer to the K-5 list.
    • Daily attendance record keeping for students, staff, and visitors.
    • Enhanced cleaning.
    • Proper hand hygiene.
    • Upgraded ventilation to MERV 13 filters in all District sites including portables to meet provincial standards.

    *Physical distancing of 2 m will not continue. Adults and children to the best of their ability are asked to please consider and respect the personal space of others. Personal space is the distance from which a person feels comfortable being next to another person.

  • StrongStart 2021-2022 Instructions for Families

    1. Families will line up and wait for the StrongStart facilitator to greet and guide them to the StrongStart centre.
    2. StrongStart facilitators will greet with an attendance clipboard to collect names and contact information of the attending families. Visitors will indicate on the form that they have completed the Daily Health Check, and reference the K-5 list.
    3. Facilitators will outline instructions for registration. Parents/guardians will be required to complete a registration form and other documents to fill out as well as be required to provide a birth certificate for their child.
    4. Strollers/buggies will be parked on the designated spots outside or in the marked area of the classroom depending on the centre, providing there is space available.
    5. With StrongStart centres with no direct exterior door, facilitators will lead the participants to the StrongStart room following the direction of the arrows. Masks are required for all adults in all areas of the school.
    6. There will be a handwashing/sanitizing station either in the hallway or entrance to the classroom. With most centres having a sink, families can walk directly to the sink to wash hands.
    7. Once hands are washed, StrongStart facilitators will direct participants to a play area. Children will be allowed to move between play areas, with the caregiver accompanying the child.
    8. A change table area will be provided with a closed garbage that can be open and closed with the patron’s foot.
    9. During circle time, please respect the personal space of others at all times.
    10. Pre-packages of snacks, and/or cut fruit or vegetables will be offered to families as they leave the facility. There will be no snack time within the session time.
  • Important Reminders

    As the numbers are still reduced to 20 in each centre, please limit your attendance as appropriate. Thank you for your consideration and thoughtfulness to your fellow StrongStart attendees as we work to create a plan that will be accessible to all and allow participation in sessions by all children and caregivers. We appreciate your understanding and cooperation.

    Families may attend more than one centre in the District. Please continue to reference our website for updated schedules and addresses.

    If you have any questions or concerns, please contact a StrongStart centre by calling the school site or e-mail the District: feedback@sd35.bc.ca.

    For additional information on health and safety guidelines, please find the K-12 Education Recovery Plan here, and the BCCDC’s Public Health Communicable Disease Guidance for K-12 Schools here.

    We look forward to welcoming families to our Langley School District StrongStart centres. Our goal is to create a safe, welcoming opportunity for all early learners and their caregivers.

  • FAQ — What is the Purpose of StrongStart Programs?

    The goal of StrongStart centres is to provide parents/caregivers and their preschool children with the opportunity to play, learn and grow together. The centres are operated in school settings so you and your child can become an important part of the school community before your child enters Kindergarten. Together, with a qualified Early Childhood Educator, you help your child to develop important oral language and early literacy skills, and physical, intellectual and social skills, preparing them to successfully transition into Kindergarten learning.

  • FAQ — Where are StrongStart centres located?

    See information below to learn more about our StrongStart locations. Stay connected to the school community by following their Facebook pages (see links). This is where you can read site-specific information and additional activities you can engage in with your child(ren).

  • FAQ — What are StrongStart closure dates for 2021-2022?

    Closure DateReason
    October 12Stat Holiday - Thanksgiving
    October 23Professional Development Day
    October 26Administration Day
    November 11Stat Holiday - Remembrance Day
    November 23Administration Day
    December 16Last day with families before winter break
    December 17Administration Day
    December 18Administration Day
    January 5Strong Start Closure
    January 6Open to families
    February 12Professional Development Day
    February 15Stat Holiday - Family Day
    February 22Administration Day
    March 12Administration Day
    March 15 to 26Closure - Spring Break
    April 2Stat Holiday - Easter Friday
    April 5Stat Holiday - Easter Monday
    May 21Professional Development Day
    May 24Stat Holiday - Victoria Day
    June 22Last day with families
  • FAQ — How can I register my child for StrongStart?

    Advanced registration is not necessary. On the first day of attending StrongStart, the facilitator will provide you with a registration form and other documents to fill out. Parents/guardians will be required to provide a birth certificate for their child. Please follow any further instructions outlined by the facilitator at the centre.

  • FAQ — Are there any costs?

    No. Nutritious snacks, use of toys and materials at learning centres are provided free of charge. StrongStart Centres are funded by the Ministry of Education and are open to all parents in the entire community.

  • FAQ — What do my child and I do at the centre?

    StrongStart Centres are places full of fun, with many play/learning centres, materials and stimulating activities for children ages 0 – 5.

    Note: There are baby change tables in the closest washrooms. Every child must be accompanied to the washroom by their parent/caregiver, and wear a mask in the centre, hallways, and washrooms.

    With regular StrongStart attendance, young children will develop good social skills and form trusting play relationships with other children. Over time, children become prepared to successfully learn in a Kindergarten setting as they gradually learn to communicate their wishes, listen to others, share toys, and sit and focus at circle or story-reading time. They are involved in a safe and happy environment where they develop self-confidence. Together with their parent/guardian, children can play with other adults and with other children. Both parents/guardian and children engage in the following:

    • use costumes to play dress-up
    • play with puppets, clay, puzzles
    • pretend play with trucks, tractors, trains, cars, dolls, little people, animals
    • hear and participate in story-telling and story reading
    • play at sand and water tables
    • sing songs, do rhymes, finger plays
    • work with a variety of art media
    • play with natural and real materials
    • develop large and small motor skills and coordination
  • FAQ — What are the expectations at StrongStart centres?

    Health and Safety:

    • Do not bring your child to the centre if you have not reviewed your child’s health using the health check.
    • Upon arrival, line-up, wait, and sign-in as directed by the StrongStart facilitator.
    • Take full responsibility for the supervision of your child(ren) at all times.
    • Snacks will be provided upon your departure from the centre. Please supervise your child eating.
    • Please do not smoke on the school grounds.

    Behaviour Expectations:

    • Your children look to you and learn by example, so they’ll need your support at the centre.
    • For the older children, you can help your 4 and 5 year-olds to prepare to enter the school environment by reminding them to use indoor voices, walk in the hallway, play gently, clean up toys and materials.
    • Set simple and clear expectations for your child, be consistent.
    • State limits in a positive way, focus your child on what to do, instead of what NOT to do.
    • Acknowledge your child’s feelings, listen to them, respond to them.
    • Give your child alternatives, choices that are appropriate, and do this in a non-threatening way.
    • Redirect your child at times when situations may cause inappropriate behaviour to occur (refusing to share, etc.)
    • Give your child cues and directions prior to changing from one activity to another.

    There are plenty of opportunities for you to connect with other adults, pick up pamphlet resources for adult-to-adult discussion, offer a kind word or two, and create new adult to adult friendships. Thank you, parents/caregivers, for actively participating in your child’s play, for working together to help the Early Childhood Educator to establish and maintain routines such as Circle Time, Story Time, etc. with the children. Thank you for cooperating with other parents and caregivers in gently guiding the play and learning of the children in the Centre.

  • FAQ — What is the Philosophy of the centre?

    We believe that:

    • Parents and caregivers are children’s first and most important teachers.
    • Everyone is special and unique and has a lot of knowledge to share with others.
    • The experiences of the first five years in a child’s life set the stage for success in life.
    • Children learn through discovery, exploration, and play.