For those times when you can’t be there yourself, our Early Childhood Center provides a safe, nurturing environment where your child will learn, grow and thrive.

Our Early Childhood Center is licensed by the State of Illinois and our staff members receive extensive training through the national YMCA as well through the Gateway Region YMCA.

  • Child-led and play-based
  • State-licensed
  • Focused on healthy living
  • Experienced and certified caregivers
  • Tuition savings for YMCA Family Members
  • Low teacher-child ratios

At the Y, children are happy and confident, secure and nurtured, and always learning and growing as they play, explore, and interact. We have programs for children from 6 weeks to 5 years, providing a healthy supportive environment that’s unique to the YMCA.

The YMCA believes that child care should provide opportunities and experiences that stimulate a child’s physical, social, intellectual and emotional development. 

Program Ratios:

  • Infants 1:4
  • Toddlers 1:5
  • Twos 1:8
  • Pre-K, 3-6 years 1:10
Contact Us

Kasey Camren
ECEC Director

618-451-9107

Email Kasey

Kids thrive when their physical, cognitive and social-emotional development is nurtured. By creating more healthy choices, the Y’s Healthy Eating Physical Activity (HEPA) standards lay the foundation for a positive youth development journey.

As a participant of the Child and Adult Food Program (CACFP), we are able to offer baby food, infant formula (Enfamil Gentlease) and rice cereal to all infants, at no extra charge. Parents may provide other food of their preference.

At the Y,  we use HiMama childcare software for communicating with parents and guardians. Families receive updates sent via email or smartphone using the HiMama app. HiMama is used by our educators to record activities, take pictures and provide updates throughout the day. Everything from naps to snacks, it will provide you with a complete history of your child’s experience in our program with photos stored safely and securely in a journal format.

Understanding how children develop and learn is vital to a quality early childhood program. Our program is designed to consider the general patterns of growth as well as to recognize and accept individual difference among children. 

At the Y, we use Project Construct curriculum. Project Construct is derived from the belief that learning is a lifelong process in which learners construct knowledge through interactions with their physical and social environments. Through “hands-on, minds-on” learning experiences, students in Project Construct classrooms attain deep understandings in the core content areas, while they also learn to work collaboratively with adults and peers in vibrant learning communities.

The YMCA Early Childhood Education Program provides a high quality, safe, convenient, recreational and educational environment for children regardless of ability. Our philosophy includes: 

  • To provide quality care for children, regardless of socio/economic background. 
  • To support and strengthen the family unit 
  • To help children develop their fullest potential. 
  • To deliver the program in a positive Y environment of safety, support, and care. 

We achieve these goals with the understanding that each child is a unique, special individual who will receive attention appropriate to his or her developmental needs. 

Through the Y’s Annual Campaign, we can ensure that everyone is always welcome at the Y, no matter his or her financial situation. Financial Assistance toward program fees is available for those with a demonstrated financial need. Applications are available at the early childhood education center office.

Our Y welcomes participation by children of all abilities. Children diagnosed with a disability will be referred to our Inclusion Services Department for assistance. The Y provides a recreational environment for children and teens with and without disabilities through added support staff when needed to facilitate successful participation in the programs. For more information, call the Inclusion Services Department at (314) 678-0162. 

Early Childhood Education Center
Address
Granite City, IL 62040

618-451-9107

Center Hours
Monday - Friday
7 am - 6 pm

We're closed on the following holidays:

Presidents' Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day and the day after, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. 

• Brochure
• Family Handbook
Sample Menu
Sample Activity Plan

Begin Your Career in Child Care

If you have talent, knowledge, and passion for working with children - and you want to work in an organization where you will be rewarded with opportunities to serve, it's time to learn more about what the Gateway Region YMCA has to offer.