About PlAY

PLAY is a licensed, not-for-profit daycare located in the Kensington area of Calgary. Our daycare  accommodates 64 children, ranging in age from 6 months to 6 years. 

At PLAY, families and community are the key to our program’s success. As a parent at PLAY, you have a say in how the centre operates as our board of directors is led by a team of passionate parent volunteers, and has been for more than 40 years!

We believe that children thrive when they grow in a community of caring and nurturing relationships. We emphasize learning through PLAY and have adopted FLIGHT: Alberta’s Early Learning Curriculum Framework to shape our work with the children both inside and outside of the classroom. 

We see children as competent, capable citizens who deserve the opportunity to interact with the world around them with wonder, curiosity and imagination. We aim to develop a love for learning and support children to engage with the world around them with a sense of expansiveness and openness. 

PLAY is located in the Hillhurst United Church, though our operations are secular and not directly affiliated with the church. Our hours of operation are from 7:00 am to 6:00 pm, Monday to Friday. Our Infant Room closes at 5:30 pm. 

Our History

PLAY was established in the 70’s by a group of parents in the neighborhood on a mission to create a place of belonging, community and quality care for children. With the help of a local incentive grant, PLAY has grown into what it is today, driven by the care and commitment of dedicated families, volunteers and teachers.

It’s hard to imagine, but the original founding children who first attended PLAY are old enough to be grandparents! 

PLAY continues to offer quality care to children and families, building on its legacy of community connections and belonging.

Mission & Vision

Mission Statement

PLAY is a community of individuals focused on relationships, collaboration and providing a safe and loving environment for children to learn and play. We are dedicated to ensuring children embrace their curiosity to engage the world around them with an open heart and mind. 

Vision Statement:

At PLAY, we imagine a future where the relationships and skills formed during children’s earliest years establish a lifetime of friendships and a passion for learning. We believe that what happens in childhood creates a ripple effect of unimaginable possibilities for a bright future for all.

Core Values

Our Teachers

PLAY teachers are known for their nurturing, caring and fun dispositions. We are proud of our team’s tenure, with one of our teacher’s recently celebrating 25 years of employment with PLAY!

Our Early Childhood Educators plan and facilitate meaningful learning experiences based on sound knowledge of children’s development and on daily observation of the child’s interests, needs and abilities. We implement programming that is relevant and meaningful to the children. Our philosophy is to provide a predictable yet still flexible daily routine to instill a sense of security which allows for individual preferences and independent choice.

All teachers at PLAY must have a valid child care certificate, police check with vulnerable sector search and a current first aid certification. They come from diverse backgrounds which supports children through a variety of experiences.

Get to know our leadership team:

Celeste McIlhargey

Executive Director

Celeste has been working at PLAY since September 2021. She has been working with children for 18 years, with a focus on early childhood since 2011. She is a casual instructor in the department of Early Childhood Education and Development with Bow Valley College and has a Masters degree in Education, with a focus on Educational Neuroscience and Leadership. One fun fact about Celeste… she still believes in unicorns!

Rachel Andallo

Assistant Director

Rachel has been working at PLAY since February 2016. She has worked with children for over 40 years. Rachel is known for being the “heart” of the PLAY community. She has her Bachelor of Science in Education degree from St. Paul College of Ilocos Sur as well as her Master’s Degree in Educational Management from the University of Northern Philippines. One fun fact about Rachel...she absolutely loves to cook and bake!

Interested in becoming a part of the PLAY community? Book a tour with us today!

Home   |  About | Program  | Admissions  |  Parent Resources  |  Contact