Building Blocks Laboratory Preschool

What is the Building Blocks Laboratory Preschool?
The Building Blocks Laboratory Preschool name symbolizes the foundation blocks upon which a healthy child develops-blocks labeled trust, security, safety, consistency, positive self-esteem, food, shelter, clothing, etc.

The children who come to the preschool have had this foundation shaken, or perhaps some of the blocks are even missing as a result of their life circumstances.

The goal of Building Blocks Laboratory Preschool is to strengthen this foundation. This cannot be done in isolation, but has the best chance of making a difference in the lives of children as staff work together with families and other community services.

Who is the preschool for?

Who are the staff?

How do children become part of the preschool?

What makes it a Laboratory Preschool?
Building Blocks Laboratory Preschool provides a training ground for college interns and area day care providers and teachers to observe techniques used in the classroom when dealing with the challenging behavior of children. The program helps professionals to recognize the emotional needs of the children in their care and helps them to become a healing environment. Staff observe how to prepare children to learn by dealing with the issues that interfere with learning.

What is the program like?

What are the goals of the program?

What does it cost to have a child at the Preschool?
There is no cost to families, but parents must agree to participate in weekly home visits, classroom observations and complete parenting classes.

Baby, Think It Over

Middle School students throughout Elkhart County have an opportunity to get a taste of what parenting might be like. From late night care-giving sessions to unexplained crying to the smell of baby powder, these computerized "babies" provide students with a very valuable learning experience.

The Elkhart County Community Foundation awarded CAPS a generous grant to begin the program with 30 "babies". Other donations from the community have allowed us to buy another 34. These "babies" have a computer box installed in their backs and are set to cry randomly. They can only be quieted when a special key is inserted by the student and held in the “baby” back until the care session is over.

Upon completion, the computer readout tells the teacher what kind of care the baby received: how quickly the student responded to the crying, how many times the "baby's" head was not supported, the total number of minutes cried, and if the baby was roughly handled, shaken, or dropped. The goal for this program is for students to realize what is involved in caring for a baby, so that they will come to good conclusions about their readiness and what kind of time and lifestyle changes it will require. Also, the experience allows a good opportunity for a dialogue to develop between the students and his or her parents concerning a subject that is important to all.

For more information, please contact CAPS at 295-2277.