Photo courtesy of MightyKidz Daycare: MightyKidz Daycare teacher Kimmy Govender plays with students in her charge at one of daycare centers in Queen Anne and Magnolia. Demand for childcare services in the area has spurred MightyKidz administrators to open a fourth location in Magnolia, which is currently under construction at 2307 W. Elmore St., Seattle. Once completed, the building will have a little over 10,000 square feet.
Photo courtesy of MightyKidz Daycare: MightyKidz Daycare teacher Kimmy Govender plays with students in her charge at one of daycare centers in Queen Anne and Magnolia. Demand for childcare services in the area has spurred MightyKidz administrators to open a fourth location in Magnolia, which is currently under construction at 2307 W. Elmore St., Seattle. Once completed, the building will have a little over 10,000 square feet.

With three centers already open in Queen Anne and Magnolia, MightyKidz Daycare owner Kyla Liboon and Executive Director Rachel Peterson know what it takes to have a successful business.

Now they are applying that knowledge to their fourth location, currently under construction in Magnolia, a building a little over 10,000 square feet located at 2307 W. Elmore St.

The philosophy at the daycare center, however, has not changed. Liboon said she wants the daycare centers to be a “home away from home” for the children and their parents.

That desire stemmed from her struggle leaving her son at a daycare center when she returned to work in early childcare development. Liboon said she and her husband, Jeff, came up with the idea of starting their own daycare center, which would allow her to continue her work, while keeping her son with her.

“For me, it was really important for parents to feel comfortable dropping their kids off at childcare,” Liboon said.

At MightyKidz, administrators and staff try to connect with families by getting to know the parents, as well as the children, Liboon said.

“That way you get a better sense of families,” she said.

Since Liboon and her husband opened their MightyKidz in-home center in 2014 at their Magnolia home, demand spurred them to open two more locations in Queen Anne:  MightyKidz — Lower Queen Anne in 2017 and MightyKidz — Upper Queen Anne in 2018.

Where they started with 12 children, MightyKidz now serves about 150 children and employs 50 teachers and staff. Once open, the newest MightyKidz site will serve 135 youth and feature 10 classrooms with 45 full- and part-time employees.

The MightyKidz Magnolia site is still a couple months out until construction is finished, and the licensing process can take up to three months, Peterson said. During that time, furniture will be built and classrooms prepped.

While they agreed, there is a demand for quality childcare centers in Queen Anne and Magnolia, Peterson attributes MightyKidz success, however, to the teachers.

“We have a unique business model within our industry, and really in any industry, in that we put our teachers first,” she said, adding administrators support staff and make sure they are engaged and their voices are heard.

The teachers’ satisfaction is reflected in their work, Peterson said, which makes for happy children and, in turn, happy parents.

“So, it’s a nice little cycle that all starts with teachers,” she said.

In addition to an open-door policy, Peterson said they give teachers flexibility and creativity in expanding on the curriculum they follow by providing a budget that allows them to capitalize on children’s interests.

For example, Liboon said, one day on a walk, one of the children saw a “choo choo train,” and soon, all that the children were talking about was the train. The teacher took advantage of that and planned a series of lessons about trains, which culminated in the class taking a ride on the monorail.

“So when the kids are fully invested in the topics they’re learning, then the learning outcomes are far greater,” Peterson said.

The MightyKidz administrators encourage teachers to take their young charges, sporting their MightyKidz capes, out in the neighborhoods, and the Magnolia location will not be any different, except for the landscape.

The new location will look different inside, however. Peterson said the Magnolia site will include many features they didn’t know they wanted their other sites to have until they were already built, from additional storage to a larger kitchen. The classrooms will also be larger, from 800 to 1,000 square feet.

“So this has kind of already grown to become our dream center,” Peterson said.

In addition, while the other MightyKidz daycares have a lead and an associate teacher in each classroom, the Magnolia location will have three teachers to a room.

And while teachers will still be encouraged to explore the neighborhood, the Magnolia daycare will have a “really great” playground, Liboon said, which the students will visit for 20 minutes twice a day.

“I think the playgrounds are going to be a huge improvement of what we’ve seen in the past,” she said.

And while their newest daycare is still not completed, interest has already grown. Already there is a waiting list to enroll children at MightyKidz, but that shouldn’t discourage parents from signing up. Liboon said they have found that waiting lists always change, and she anticipates they will only be 30 percent full on the first day.

For more information on the new location or MightyKidz, visit the website at mightykidz.com or email info@mightykidz.com.