The vision of Semillitas Early Learning Center was planted in 2012 by a group of experienced early childhood educators. Their vision was to provide a high quality, nurturing, and engaging Spanish Immersion Infant and Toddler program that embodied the values of cooperation and partnership between administration, teachers, and parents.
Today we are reaping the harvest of that vision; with a thriving program that is committed to providing quality and affordable childcare to our diverse DC community.
As a participant in the DC quality childcare program, we are dedicated to maintaining a safe and caring environment. We provide responsive and individualized care and implement intentional learning routines and experiences.
It is our mission to provide a stimulating and nurturing, values-rich environment for children of varied backgrounds to learn, grow, and thrive, while celebrating Spanish language and Latin American culture. As a Spanish creative immersion program with inspirations form Montessori and Reggio Emilia pedagogy, we offer children a nurturing environment that balances freedom to work and learn independently, or to work in small groups and learn from collaborating and negotiating with other children.
We believe that mutual respect, honesty, and understanding between teachers, students, and parents are core to our mission. We strive to foster collaboration among our teachers, students, and families to strengthen our learning community and ensure we meet the needs of all. Transparency and accountability are fundamental principles that guide our work. Our goal is to nurture the potential of each child through compassionate and engaged relationships built on trust.
Teachers at Semillitas strive to create positive social environments to promote children’s social emotional skills; and help them become competent and enthusiastic learners. Teachers are facilitators of learning, by helping children to build knowledge and understanding. Teachers plan according to the interest and proficiency level of the children based on their observations and screening of the children. They ask open-ended questions and encourage children to explore their natural curiosities, while encouraging and supporting them along the way.
Early childhood educators in D.C. must be at least 18 years of age and meet certain education requirements depending on their role. Educators are required to have qualifications ranging from a Child Development Associate (CDA) credential, an Associate's degree in early childhood education (ECE), a Bachelor's degree in ECE, or 24 - 48 semester credit hours in ECE from an institution.
The suitability of our staff is assessed through completion of fingerprinting, criminal background check, and the child protection registry (CPR).
Our staff hold current CPR and first aid certification, as well as training in management of communicable diseases, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), and child abuse prevention. In addition to these annual trainings, staff are required to complete 21 hours of professional development courses provided by OSSE or Semillitas management.