Nobody wants to be sick. Parents are legitimately concerned for the health of their children as they start school, and participate in group class activities. There are a lot of germs out there, and H1N1 is making us ALL take a look at what we can do to stay healthy.
Kindermusik International (as always) has done extensive research on the subject, and is providing educators facts and recommended methods for keeping everyone Healthy and Happy.
“It is extremely important to create environments where parents are assured their children are as safe as we can provide. It adheres to our Core Value of doing what is best for the parent and child.” – Michael Dougherty, President of Kindermusik International.
Based on this information, and my further research, the following policies will be in place for our Kindermusik classrooms. Many cleanliness practices in the classroom were in place already, but some have been adapted, and together we must renew our commitment to be diligent, consistent, and proactive.
All instruments and props, as well as door handles, etc. will be sanitized. (See the next blog posting for this new method of using ultraviolet light to kill 99.9% of germs on any surface. It just takes time, so I will be arriving early to ensure a clean environment.)
Each person, upon arriving, must either wash their hands with warm water and soap, or sanitize with antibacterial hand gel. Please make sure to arrive timely so there is time for this before class starts. It is also recommended to wash hands after class. Warm soap and water works best, so Ms. Debbie will clean hands before each class.
Each person should do their best to make sure they are healthy before attending class. PLEASE do not attend if either you or your child are sick (allow 2 days after fever is gone to recover). Kindermusik International is developing some wonderful online resources for you if you have to miss a class. And I will have an open make up policy so there will be ample opportunities for class attendance.
My blankets serve as uniquely defined spaces for each family to sit that encourages interactions with each other
, and reduces touching interactions with other families. Blankets will be washed each week, and extra blankets will be available if some need to be removed.
All participants must strive to utilize the healthy habits of keeping their hands out of their mouths, and covering sneezes and coughs with the inside elbow. If a child wipes their noses or puts their hands in their mouth, their hands should be cleaned again before any interactions with others outside their family. Of course, we expect young children to explore instruments and their hands with their mouths – that’s how they learn. We will just reduce the possibility of sharing that learning experience with others.
Instruments / props will be handed out individually (instead of all crowding around the container in the center), and collected in a separate container where they will be sanitized before any further use. Scarves will only be used once, then sanitized before further use.
Some activities may be adapted to reduce unnecessary touching
. For some activities that encourage person to person contact, like circle dances, we may clean hands prior to the activity. We don’t want to make children afraid to touch others, but we want to teach them to be aware of how to help everyone to stay healthy.
It may take some extra time to ensure a healthy environment, but it will be worth it for the health of everyone involved. I am committed to ensure this happens!