Sprouts (originally Sprouts Family Daycare) was dreamed up in 2013. In August 2014 it opened as a group home daycare on the lowest level of Caity’s central Champaign home. In addition to Ellen’s new baby and Caity’s children, they were licensed by DCFS to care for 9 other children from ages 6 weeks to 6 years.
Through the years, and one more of Ellen’s babies, Caity & Ellen developed policies, practices, curriculum, and a structure that they loved. By January 2019, they were ready to expand – and started hunting for a new space.
In February 2019 they found the perfect place. It had just enough indoor space for two small classrooms on a large in-town lot. It even had a privacy fence, space for parking, and a location close to home. They purchased the property in April 2019 and got to work! Adding a butterfly garden, a mud kitchen, and a natural area (unmowed) were high on the list of things to do.
With lots of help, Caity & Ellen opened their new center, Sprouts School, in January 2020, now licensed for 20 children by DCFS as a daycare center.
Caity & Ellen take great pride in this space – natural light highlights the prominent natural and re-purposed materials. Lining each classroom are hand-made cubbies, tables, and shelving, with accents of art made by friends, relatives, and the teachers and children themselves.
You can take a tour of the Sprouts School space here.
Check out our original announcement video below!