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Ballard Road KinderCare

Dana Kaphingst, Center Director

3036 North Ballard Rd. Appleton WI 54911
(920) 749-9878 Contact this center

Ages: 6 Weeks to 12 Years

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Special Instructions:
3 blocks S of Interstate 41

Across the street from Memorial Park

Elementary Schools Bussed To:
Huntley, Ferber, Classical, Franklin

We are proud of the positive difference we make every day for the children in our community through our exceptional early childhood education programs and expert care. Our dedication to quality has earned accreditation from both the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and the state’s coveted YoungStar 5-star rating. We have also been recognized as a Breastfeeding Friendly ChildCare Provider by the Breastfeeding Alliance of Northeast Wisconsin.

  • Accreditation Seal Every Day · Every Child · Excellence · Accreditated · Knowledge Universe
  • NAEYC Accreditation NAEYC


Welcome to our Ballard Road KinderCare Learning Center and Preschool.  We understand choosing a child care provider is one of the most important decisions you will make for your child and we want to help. The first time you drop your child off at child care, you want to be certain that they are taken care of the exact way you would care for them.  Here at KinderCare we provide a safe, clean, stimulating environment for your child to grow and thrive! All parents want their child to grow and develop to his or her fullest potential and so do we.
We are rated 5 star by the state of Wisconsin and received our Accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children.  Come in and see the center and meet all of our passionate, educated and loving teachers.  Find out what it’s like to be part of the KinderCare family.

Dana Kaphingst, Center Director

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Many of our child care centers are accredited by national organizations that require us to meet rigorous early childhood education standards and guidelines for high-quality care and education. Programs that are accredited have demonstrated their commitment to go beyond the state’s minimum licensing requirements to meet and maintain these high standards of quality.

Our Programs

Infant Programs (6 weeks - 1 year)

Babies grow and learn every day. Our goal is to provide a safe and nurturing "home away from home" where babies can explore and make new discoveries. We know that learning through play is extremely valuable at this age and our Early Foundations® Infant program is designed to give babies the skills that will serve as the building blocks for a lifetime of learning.

Toddler Programs (1 – 2 Years)

As toddlers develop friendships, self-esteem, and curiosity, our Early Foundations® Toddler program will help them explore their world in a safe and nurturing environment. Our unique curriculum is based on the philosophy that children learn best through experiences. So each day is filled with fun activities that excite and develop toddlers, giving them the comfort and confidence to speak those first few important words, as well as make their first friends.

Discovery Preschool Programs (2 – 3 Years)

At this age, children are making new discoveries daily. And as two-year olds begin to exert their independence, our Early Foundations® Discovery Preschool program is prepared to open their eyes to a world of learning, sharing, and exploring. Our holistic approach in the classroom engages young minds with a blend of music, art, and movement, as well as the early education fundamentals they'll need as they continue on to preschool.

Preschool Programs (3 – 4 Years)

As preschoolers gain more self-esteem, they may feel ready to take on the world. Our Early Foundations® Preschool program enhances that confidence by providing activities to help children become problem solvers and lifelong learners. Through independent exploration, structured activities, and hands-on learning, children will work on early literacy, math, science, and social studies concepts. A healthy dose of running, jumping, and dancing keeps them active too.

Prekindergarten Programs (4 – 5 Years)

Prekindergartners are preparing for the adventure of a lifetime – school. And our Early Foundations Prekindergarten® program is designed to get them ready by teaching letters and words, math concepts, and valuable social skills. With small group instruction, independent play in an organized atmosphere, and whole-group activities, children will have all the right skills to hop, skip, and jump right into kindergarten.

Before- & After-School Programs (5 – 12 Years)

Even after school's out for the day, children need to be engaged in a comfortable, yet stimulating environment. That's where our Catch the Wave® program comes in. This innovative before – and after-school program allows school-age children to balance learning and fun through a variety of experiences. From homework help to fun physical activities, our program is designed so that everyone goes home happy.

Summer Programs (preschool, prekindergarten, and school-age)

Don’t miss out on KinderCare’s Summer of Wonder: Six themed programs that will make summer exciting, educational and tons of fun. Whether your child is in our preschool, Pre-K or school-age programs, all of it is designed to help children learn while soaking up the fun. We offer flexible scheduling options to meet the needs of busy families like yours so we hope to see you there.

Participating Child Care Aware Center

KinderCare has partnered with Child Care Aware® of America in an effort to offer fee assistance for Active Duty military families and solutions to their child care needs when care at a Child Development Center on the installation is not available.

Learning Adventures - Enrichment Program


The Cooking Adventures program gives children opportunities to participate in fun, developmentally appropriate cooking experiences. They will learn about recipes, ingredients, cooking vocabulary, and the importance of a healthy diet. The curriculum includes lessons on picnics, pizza, and heart-healthy meals.


The Math Adventures enrichment program is designed to teach important mathematics concepts such as geometry, numbers, measurement, and probability. Your child will learn about length, height, and weight. He will learn about shapes and solids. He will learn how to add, subtract, multiply, and count money. Math is everywhere and giving your child every advantage now will add up to success later in life.


Ongoing research proves that early exposure to music helps children think, reason, create, and express themselves. Children will laugh and learn about rhythm, vocal melodies, and a variety of musical genres and instruments, which can lower stress and advance memory. Learning never sounded so good.

Phonics & Reading Adventures

Set your child up for advanced success with literacy through phonics, the study of letters and sounds. Reader books, games, and activity cards help your child understand the basics of vowels and blending syllables, giving him confidence and command of language.

Upcoming Events at our CenterView All Events

  1. Sunday January 01, 2017
    1. January's Learning Focus

      Children 6 weeks to 3 years old: Light and Dark, plus the Sky and Weather

      Through shadow play, experiments with flashlights, observing the Sun and more, infants and toddlers will enjoy learning about light and dark this month. Infants continue sensory development by looking at contrasting patterns and at objects that are clearly defined by sharp edges and bright colors, while toddlers will build on their understanding of the light and dark concepts with play around daytime and nighttime. The older Discovery Preschool children will turn their attention to the sky as they learn about weather, the Moon, the Sun, and stars.

      Children 4–5 years old: Transportation, Healthy Bodies, and Winter

      For children in the Preschool and Kindergarten classrooms, January is filled with variety! They’ll begin by learning about transportation and studying how things get from “here” to “there.” A few weeks later, the focus will shift to health and bodies, with an emphasis placed on how to make good choices for a growing body. Towards the end of the month, children will be introduced to the transformative nature of the winter season and learn how to dress and take care of themselves when it’s cold outside. 

  2. Monday December 26, 2016
    1. Center Closed in Observance of Christmas Day

Teachers & Staff

Meet your child’s future teacher. We have fun, loving teachers dedicated to your child’s early education. Our family cannot wait for you to join us. Don't forget to ask about our free trial day.

  • Dana Kaphingst

    Dana Kaphingst, Center Director

    Dana has been with KinderCare since July 2005.  Dana started as an assistant teacher part time while she finished her Associate's Degree in Early Childhood Education.  After she graduated she became the lead teacher in the toddler room and stayed with the toddlers until she became an Assistant Director in August 2013!  Dana then became the Center Director here at KinderCare Ballard in February 2016.  Her passion has always been to provide a quality learning experience to children and to support the families in her building. Dana loves watching the children grow and learn new things daily! She could not imagine her life without her KinderCare family!

    Year Started:
    11 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    Associate's Degree in Early Childhood Education
  • Michelle Jackl

    Michelle Jackl, Assistant Director

    Michelle has been with KinderCare since March 2010. She has her Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education.  Michelle had worked in the Preschool classroom for 6 years before becoming the Assistant Director here at KinderCare Ballard.  She loves that she can make a difference in the lives of children! It is important to Michelle to involve learning in all areas of the classroom to engage and meet the needs of each individual child.

    Year Started:
    6 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    6 Years
    Assiciates Degree in Early Childhood Education
  • Ms. Emily

    Ms. Emily, Infants

    Ms. Emily has been with KinderCare since 2015. She is currently pursuing her Child Development Associate Credential through Rasmussen College. Ms. Emily has working in the childcare industry since 2010, but has found her home at the Ballard KinderCare in the Infant classroom. She loves the children and feels fortunate to be part of their development.

    Year Started:
    1 Year
  • Ms. Jessica

    Ms. Jessica, Toddlers

    Ms. Jessica has been with KinderCare since 2014.  She has her Child Development Associate Credential, an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education and is working towards her Bachelors Degree in Early Childhood Education all through Rasmussen College.  Ms. Jessica loves coming in everyday and seeing each child's smiling face and watching them learn and grow!

    Year Started:
    2 Years
  • Ms. Katie

    Ms. Katie, Infant and Toddler

    Ms. Katie has been working with KinderCare since 2015. She graduated from Kent State University with her Bachelors Degree in Human Development and Family Studies with a minor in English. Ms. Katie's favorite part of teaching is getting to work with the children everyday, watching them grow into bright and strong individuals.

    Year Started:
    1 Year
  • Ms. Sarah

    Ms. Sarah, Discovery Preschool (Two's)

    Ms. Sarah started working at KinderCare in 2015. She is currently working on her Child Development Associate Credential through Rasmussen College. She has been working with in early childhood since 2010. Ms. Sarah enjoys watching the children learn and grow. Everyday is a new learning experience, and she loves that she can be a part of their learning adventure.

    Year Started:
    1 Year
  • Ms. Kalia

    Ms. Kalia, Preschool

    Ms. Kalia started at KinderCare in 2015. She graduated from University Wisconsin Stevens Point in 2014 with her Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education with a minor in English as a Second Language (ESL).  Ms. Kalia has been working in early childhood since 2010.  She loves seeing the growth of each child and the warm hugs and smiles that she receives everyday.

    Year Started:
    1 Year
  • Ms. Melanie

    Ms. Melanie, Prekindergarten

    Ms. Melanie started at KinderCare in 2016. She has her Bachelor's Degree in Art Education and has been teaching for 15 years. Ms. Melanie loves sharing ideas and exploring with the students. She loves seeing their creative ideas and making art with them.

    Year Started:
  • Ms. Katie Barnes, 4K

    Ms. Katie started working with KinderCare in 2016. She has her Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education and has been teaching in an early childhood classroom since 2006. Ms. Katie enjoys giving children opportunities to explore through hands on, engaging and fun experiences. She loves watching children grasp a new concept and aid in their continued growth and school success. 

    Year Started:

December 2016 Events

December Hero Image
Filter Center Calendar
  1. Thursday December 01, 2016
    1. December's Learning Focus

      Children 6 weeks to 3 years old: Family, Friends, and Things that Go!

      Infants and toddlers will be exploring family and friends, while three-year-olds will focus on things that go vroom! Social and emotional development is foundational to growth and development in babies, so this month, infants and toddlers will participate in activities that reinforce their connection to family while also exploring connections that exist outside their home, such as friends. Meanwhile, their older friends in Discovery Preschool will learn about and play around with things that move (like bicycles, cars, buses, trains, and airplanes), which are all very exciting for little ones as they continue to explore the world outside their homes. 

      Children 4–5 years old: My Country + Tools and Machines

      The four- and five-year-olds continue exploring the world around them by learning about the state and country they live in! They’ll sings songs, play games based on travel, and learn about flags, state foods, and more. Children will also be introduced to cardinal directions (east, west, north, and south) and gain an appreciation for travel and meeting new friends from different places. 

      Children are naturally fascinated with machines and how things work and are put together. So to encourage that fascination, during the second half of this month children will learn about and play around with tools and machines. In addition to building literacy skills by using the names of machines and tools, children will develop math skills by graphing information, counting wheels, and more.

  2. Monday December 26, 2016
    1. Center Closed in Observance of Christmas Day

About Our Center

Our staff would like to welcome you to visit our KinderCare Learning Center on Ballard Road. We are located near the Intersection of Northland Ave and Ballard Rd. We have a very unique open concept center that allows your child to have very smooth transitions. The staff takes pride in keeping up to date with the latest trends in Early Childhood Education. Ongoing training is offered to the staff during the year and through the various training opportunities in the community.

Meals & Menus

Meals Served

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • PM Snack

Additional Menu Options

  • Special diets

Holidays Observed

We observe the following holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • President's Day
  • Memorial Day
  • 4th of July
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Day after Thanksgiving
  • Christmas Day

Please note that because holidays observed may vary between centers, please be sure to check with your Center Director for specific closures.

Health and Safety

The Ballard Road KinderCare knows that children's health and safety are just as important as their early education. We pride ourselves on our weekly health and safety checks from our health and safety coordinator. Not only are we looking at things in the building for safety issues, we are also practice emergency drills monthly. The safety of the children is always the first and foremost concern for all the staff. All doors are locked in the building along with our keypad for parents entry. We require picture identification for all other people who parents have permitted in picking up their child and will escort them through the process of our signing in-and-out procedures, and into the classrooms. We want to ensure that the families have a healthy, happy, and safe experience with us.

At KinderCare, what families say about us means a lot. Read below some of the great experiences our families have had with us.

Share Your Story
If you have a story about your experience at KinderCare, please share your story with us.

KinderCare is an amazing place. You know you have found the right place for your child when the staff shows love and compassion for my child everyday. I could not be any happier with the KinderCare facility that I have chosen for my child.   -Michelle

- Mom

The preschool program at KinderCare has been absolutely the best decision I have made for the educational development for my son. My son loves going to daycare everyday! He is making lots of new friends and memories. He brings home art projects and tells me stories about his entire day! It is such an incredible experience for him! The amazing teachers and directors make us feel like family.  The center has that "it feels like home" environment that we absolutely love! I am so grateful to be able to see how passionate the staff can be everyday. They are fantastic at communicating with any and all questions I have! It really helps me feel connected to my son while he is there. I highly recommend KinderCare on Ballard! They have made a huge difference in our lives!! " 

- Mom

Our son has been going to KinderCare since he was 12 weeks old. The first day of daycare/school for us as first time parents were tough as we were putting the trust of our child into strangers.  When he came home with pictures of him smiling and a 'report card' of the daily interactions, I knew we made the best decision as he felt safe enough to be himself. His teachers have actually become our friends as we both have a common interest, our son. They genuinely care for him and are excited to share with us the milestones in his life. We toured other facilities and we are very happy with our decision with KinderCare.

- Mom

See what’s happening on the blog

Our staff would like to welcome you to visit our center. The staff takes pride in keeping up to date with the latest trends in Early Childhood Education. Ongoing training is offered to the staff during the year at the center and though the various training opportunities in the community.

View More

Resources for Parents

Download helpful guides and other resources to make your child care decisions easy.

Local Resources

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