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A Day in the Life: Green Apple Kids

A Day in the Life: Green Apple Kids

January 26, 2018 | Savannah Copland

This fall, the HiMama team visited one of our highly successful customers, Green Apple Kids, to tour their preschool and see how their directors, educators and families use HiMama on a day-to-day basis.

We were interested to find out what concerns the Green Apple Kids community had about using HiMama before the program had been implemented, and how HiMama was able to win them over in the end!

    Jennifer, Director & Supervisor, Windermere Kids

    Q: What was your biggest concern about using HiMama?

    Jennifer: One thing that we don’t want to do is add to the staff workload. They have very busy days. Their first priority is always going to be the children – providing for them, providing them the best possible education throughout the day. Adding anything new to the program can always be a challenge.

    But, we’ve found that parents love it, and that the ease of the program has also made the staff really love it!

    Q: What surprised you the most about HiMama?

    Jennifer: I think its pretty budget-friendly – at least for us, it was a very good decision. Yes, its an additional cost, but what we’ve gained from it has more than made up for what we’ve spent on it.

    There are so many other plusses – like the programming. The fact that [the teachers] can do their programming on the tablets in the classrooms during downtime like sleep time has given them extra time when they are out of the classroom to do all the other things they have to do.

    Q: How do you use HiMama throughout the day?

    Jennifer: One of the first things I do when I come in every morning, I open up my email and then I open up HiMama and have it available all day. If I notice that one of the rooms is slower to check in, than I can go in and actually see who here, what time they came in and what time they left, as well as monitor all of the messages coming in and out of the center.

    Even at the end of the day when I close my email I’ll still have HiMama open, so I can make sure that all reports have been sent and all the kids have left before I do my final check [of the center] for the day.

    Katrina, Casandra, Dashar and Paula, RECEs

    Q: Were there challenges to using HiMama at first?

    Katrina: When I first saw HiMama I loved it! I was like YES, this is great!

    It didn’t take to long to figure everything out actually. I think its so much better to have how many servings, and when nap-time is [in HiMama], because we used to write all of this outside on a board and parents would just look at the board and there wouldn’t be many questions about it. Now they get a full report at the end of the day. I think the parents really like it.

    Dashar: Maybe at the beginning it was hard getting used to it, because there’s a lot HiMama has to offer. We needed to figure out what we were going to be using on an every day basis at first. I would say for the first month we were getting used to it, but after that it was very smooth.

    Casandra: If I had to be on a tablet all day, how am I going to watch the kids? How am I going to take a thousand pictures if the parents expect too many per day, and then they are going to be like, “Are you actually watching the kids?”. But we ended up getting a lot of positive feedback, so I think it really worked out.

    Q: How do you use HiMama every day?

    Paula: The first thing the staff does in the morning is get the tablets out, get them open and get them on HiMama. Before I start my program I like to check my messages, see if there’s anything I need to respond to, if any kids are away, anything like that. I love that you can schedule absences ahead of time, which is awesome, so I can quickly see who I’m expecting for the day.

    Then, throughout the day we are taking pictures. Sometimes we take pictures through the app [and tag activities], and sometimes, depending on the activity we take pictures quickly and add them later.

    Dashar: [Throughout the day] I am recording their lunch, bathroom routine, their sleeptime and afternoon snack… pretty much everything goes through HiMama!

    Laura, Julia, Neil and Anna, Parents

    Q: What is your favourite part of HiMama?

    Laura: I think its awesome! It’s really nice to see the pictures and the videos during the day, we really look forward to getting those.

    With HiMama, I can also send an email directly to the teacher, so if [my daughter] is having a rough morning sometimes, I can send them a quick email and say “I just wanted to check in to see if things are good”. The response is great, and it makes it so easy to connect with teachers and the director as well.

    Julia: They are linking [activities] to a particular skill, which I don’t think we got before which is nice. Now we get these biannual report cards and you can see what they’ve been doing that checks against that skill.

    Neil: When HiMama came along, the teachers said you can sign up other family members if you want, and that’s a great fit for our parents (both sets), as just they always wanted to know what the kids were up to and see them grow, and now they can every single day.

    Q: How do you use HiMama throughout the day?

    Julia: We use it at night oftentimes sitting around the dinner table. The kids want to see the pictures because they often haven’t seen the pictures, and then we talk about what they did during the day.

    Anna: You’ll often see me using HiMama under the desk, during a meeting checking photos! It’s just a really nice break, it’s a nice connection to the kids throughout the day.

    Q: What surprised you the most about HiMama?

    Julia: It’s got a really nice history to it, right? Some of these the things [in the app] you worry they might disappear, but you do have the whole history and that’s a nice momento.

    Neil: Really, just seeing them doing their day to day activities that, because of work we’re not able to be present. I get really excited - a lot more excited than I thought I would originally when the app was first launched.

    Thanks to everyone at Green Apple Kids and Windermere Kids - we had a wonderful visit!

    Learn how HiMama can transform your center

    Green Apple Kids’ decision to implement HiMama has brought its parents, teachers and administrators closer together and has saved everyone time!

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