Step 2: Space & Materials

What are the goals in Step 2?

  • Offer a variety of materials to support play and learning experiences for children with different interests and abilities.
  • Serve nutritious food to children.

Why is Step 2 important?

A child’s work is play! Having enough of the right materials that are set-up in a chosen space encourages children to play. When children develop good play skills, they are better prepared for school, work and life.

How do I show that I meet the Step 2 Quality Standards?

  • Demonstrate how your program serves nutritious food to children. Choose 1 of 4 options that best fits your program. 
  • Demonstrate how you use your space & materials to support play and learning experiences through an Environment Rating Scale® (ERS®) observation. The Environment Rating Scale® is a reliable, valid, research-based observational tool, which is designed to assess the quality of the environment. A Bright & Early ND Assessor completes an ERS® observation and programs must earn an average score of 4.0 or greater on each tool used.
  • Meet Professional Development Quality Standards.
  • Plus, the Health and Safety Quality Standards in Step 1.

Get Help with Step 2: Together We're Better

Are you interested in taking your program quality to the next level? We've teamed up with Child Care Aware of North Dakota® to help you achieve your Step 2 Quality Rating.  You have the option to work with a Coach the entire time, so you never have to go it alone. Coaching is not required, but it's to your benefit to have a coach.  Here's why:

  • Someone by your side to help you navigate the Bright & Early North Dakota Quality Standards.
  • A cheerleader on your team to encourage & provide feedback as you work toward YOUR goals!

Are you ready? Submit your Participation Application today!


Resources to Help with Step 2