December 2021 Newsletter

Hi! My name is Bailey! I completed my 40 Hours Course work and am looking forward to becoming an RBT here at PlayDate! I’m from Oklahoma and moved to Colorado 1 year ago! I love to watch movies and recently my husband and I have been focusing our free time on preparing for our soon-to-be son!


I always knew that I wanted to work with children, especially after graduating with my psychology degree. I’ve had the pleasure of learning about ABA through my training here at PlayDate. It’s been such a joy working with all of the kiddos and staff! I look forward to becoming more knowledgeable in the field and helping clients achieve their goals.

The holidays are such a fun time of year and getting to spend them with these amazing kids makes it so much more exciting. I am looking forward to our annual Christmas party, and getting to watch clients and staff get in the spirit!

Important Dates

December 4 – Wildlife Conservation Day
December 5 – International Volunteer Day
December 6 – Last Day of Hanukkah
December 7 – Pearl Harbor Remembrance
December 11 – PlayDate Holiday Party
December 15 – National Cupcake Day
December 21 – Winter Solstice
December 24 – Christmas Eve (Center Closed)
December 25 – Christmas Day (Center Closed)
December 26 – Kwanzaa
December 31 – New Year’s Eve

Holiday Party

We are so excited about our upcoming 11th Annual Holiday Party! It will take place on Saturday, December 11, 2021.

Families may attend either 10:00 am – 12:00 pm or 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm. We will have photos with Santa, cookie decorating and so much more!

Kiddo’s Corner

Aksel has been initiating a much larger variety of full-sentence responses that are on topic when conversing with his peers or adults.

While working with a peer and staff, staff stated, “Alright boys it’s time to go upstairs for lunch.” Aksel replied, “Can I have a snack instead? Mom and I are going to lunch later.”

Masks and Social Distancing

We hope that everyone’s back-to-school weeks have been excellent. Many of you have likely received communication from your schools regarding the COVID-19 safety protocol. PlayDate has been closely monitoring the spread of COVID-19 in Colorado Springs, as well as all local, state, and federal guidelines.

Our vaccination rate among staff, clients, and their family members are very high. While it is still our policy that fully vaccinated individuals may be in the center without a mask (as long as proof of vaccination is on file), we welcome you to continue wearing masks if that is more comfortable for you. Please be aware, should updated guidance be issued, PlayDate may require all individuals to resume wearing masks in the building, regardless of vaccination status.

We also recognize that mask requirements are beginning to be re-introduced in many community settings. Due to this, we will be working with all of our clients on tolerating wearing masks, with the ultimate goal of wearing a mask for the duration of their sessions. We understand that there is a range of opinions on wearing masks. If it is your preference that your child does not wear a mask for any reason, please let us know at [email protected]. However, please be advised that group and social activities may be greatly limited.

While we hope that everyone continues to stay safe and healthy, we recognize that some of us may be exposed to individuals who are COVID-19 positive. If you or your child receive notification that you have been exposed to a COVID-19 positive individual, we will adhere to the following procedures:

  • If you or your child are not vaccinated: We will continue to follow the previous quarantining protocol, which requires the exposed individual to self-isolate for at least 7 days, plus at least 72 hours without symptoms (minimum of 10 days); self-isolation may be ended sooner if a negative COVID-19 test result is provided.
  • If you and your child are vaccinated: Quarantine will not be required, however, we will require you and your child to wear a mask for at least 10 days following the date of exposure.
  • If you are requesting additional sessions during times that your child would normally be in school, we will ask for documentation (from the school) stating that your child was not directly exposed to the COVID-19 positive individual.

Our maintenance team continues to work diligently to provide a clean and safe environment for everyone in our PlayDate community. We will continue to practice social distancing guidelines, which currently recommend at least 3 feet of distance between individuals, especially when at least one person is not vaccinated.

Finally, please continue to conduct symptom screenings at home, and notify [email protected] should you need to cancel sessions as quickly as possible. Be advised that our general sick child policy states that children should remain at home, or will be sent home, if they are displaying any of the following symptoms: coughing, sneezing, runny nose, vomiting, or diarrhea. Children should remain home until they are symptom-free for at least 72 hours.

Thank you for your commitment to keeping all members of the PlayDate community safe and healthy, and please reach out to your Consultant or Senior Therapist should you have any additional questions.

Sick Child Policy

The majority of parents are quite careful about children’s health matters, following policies that are more likely to ensure their health, and having therapy only when the child is well. This policy provides specific guidelines so that everyone, including therapists, can be sure of when to cancel/reschedule therapy and so you can be confident in your child’s limited exposure to other sick individuals.

In the event that your child is diagnosed with a communicable disease, please notify your Senior Therapist so that we may provide warnings to other families and report to the Department of Public Health as appropriate. Your child’s
confidentiality will be safeguarded.

Our policies are based on our commitment to help families and employees stay well so that children can attend and derive the most benefit from therapy. It is equally important for us to protect the other children and our employees, whose good health is directly related to their ability to maintain their therapy

Please read the information and keep these guidelines for your reference:

Children may only participate in services (in-home or Center) if they have NOT had a fever WITHIN THE 24 HOURS PREVIOUS TO THE APPOINTMENT.

This means that even if a fever breaks, services must be canceled until 24 hours have elapsed since the fever broke. This is standard medical policy and parents may verify this with their medical advisor. Since energy levels or fevers alone are not always accurate indicators of illness, our employee may advise you
that your child appears to be getting sick even in the absence of a fever. A child can be very contagious and quite sick before a fever appears. Because our employee is careful, they know they
are required by law to be aware of each child’s individual health “picture”, to watch children they suspect of illness, and then to advise parents of their judgment.

If, in the judgment of the therapist, a child is deemed ill, a parent must pick up the child within a reasonable amount of time. A therapist may also end a session early if the child appears too sick to actively participate. This is important, to safeguard the ill child and to safeguard other children and employees from being exposed to an illness unnecessarily. This also ensures that
service time is used when the child can receive the most benefit.

Cancel services for one (1) calendar day if your child:

  • Is being treated with AUGMENTIN – as this drug creates explosive diarrhea symptoms
  • Is being treated with antibiotics
  • Has vomited and/or had diarrhea
  • Has persistent cough or nasal drainage
  • Has a greenish discharge – as this is an indication of an active infection in the child’s respiratory system

Holiday Party Sponsorship

We are preparing for our annual PlayDate Holiday Party! This event is always a success due to the support of our wonderful community! There are many ways to get involved.

  • Present Donation
  • Volunteering
  • Monetary Donations
  • Craft Donations
  • Food Donations
  • Sponsorship (at a variety of levels)

If you are interested or would like to know more, please contact Shay at 719-439-4155.

Success Stories

A 9-year-old female has decreased her challenging behavior of throwing from an average of 7 throws per session to an average of 3 throws per session and is now using 1+ words on her AAC device 81% of opportunities!

A 2-year-old female is functionally communicating using 2 pictures when using PECS. This client began services about 3 weeks ago and has not had any previous training with PECS.

A 14-year-old male while on our most recent outing to the swimming pool went deeper into the pool deeper than he ever has. In the past, this client would sit on the side of the pool and put his foot in.