Meet Melissa Toff, Our Center Director
At KinderCare Since: 2022
Education: Bachelor's Degree
Favorite Children's Book: Dog Heaven
Meet Melissa Toff! She is the Center Director at Lombard KinderCare in Illinois. Melissa attended Northeastern Illinois University where she earned a Bachelor's Degree. She has been with KinderCare for one year, and before that she was an assistant supervisor. Her favorite quote is, "Keep your children wild - don't make them grow up too fast." - Brooke Hampton. Outside of work, Melissa enjoys going to concerts and spending time with her family and dog.
Lombard KinderCare Programs
Infant Programs (6 weeks–1 year)
Leaving your baby in someone else’s care is a big step. Everyone at our centers—most importantly, our naturally gifted infant teachers—will work with you to make sure the transition goes smoothly. When you step into our infant classroom, you’ll see how much we want your infant to feel safe, loved, and ready to explore their world.
Toddler Programs (1–2 Years)
Everything in our toddler classroom is designed for little explorers. That’s because a lot is going on at this age. When your child is wandering all over the place, that means they’re learning and discovering new things every day. We’ll help them explore their interests (and find new ones!) as they play and learn.
Discovery Preschool Programs (2–3 Years)
This age is filled with so much wonder and curiosity. That’s why we offer a ton of books and toys and bring artwork down to kids eye level. Children in discovery preschool also begin to learn how we all work together in a classroom. Simple math and science, pretend play, and group play help them get used to a more structured school setting.
Preschool Programs (3–4 Years)
This age is all about expression, when kids really start to form their own ideas about what they want to play and how they want to create. Every day in our preschool classroom, your child will explore science experiments, create artwork, and play pretend—all the skills needed for their big next step: kindergarten!
Prekindergarten Programs (4–5 Years)
When you walk into one of our pre-K classrooms, you’ll see artwork and writing displayed around the room. Labels are everywhere to help kids connect letters with words. You’ll also see pictures on the walls that reflect the families in our community. Your child will also deepen their knowledge in language, math, science, Spanish, and social skills.
Before- and After-School Programs (5–12 Years)
You can count on us to provide reliable care for your school-ager while you’re at work, with safe transportation from our center to your child’s school and back! Whether your child wants to start a drama club, build a volcano, or create a comic book, they will have a place to follow their dreams. Your child will start and end the day with a whole lot of fun!
Interactive Kindergarten (5–6 Years)
Kindergarten is a critical year for young learners. Experienced KinderCare teachers will tap into your child’s natural curiosity to help get them even more prepared for elementary school. Our engaging lessons make the most of current technology while offering plenty of hands-on play and exploration.
School Break Programs (preschool, prekindergarten, and school-age)
Winter break, spring break, summer break—when school’s out (but you still need to work), you can count on KinderCare to provide a safe and supportive learning environment that’s focused on fun. We welcome children ages 5–12 during school break times and make sure they have a sensational, screen-free experience they won’t forget.
Learning Adventures - Enrichment Program
Cooking Academy™ (3 – 12 Years)
In Cooking Academy, kids learn new recipes from cultures around the world and develop a healthy relationship with food. They’ll whip up everything from Southwest rainbow lettuce wraps to pumpkin muffins, building their skills in STEM, communication, and more along the way. And yes—little chefs get to eat their culinary creations!
Music Explorers™ (2 – 4 Years)
KinderCare families are already giving a standing ovation to our newest Learning Adventures program: Music Explorers! Kids will learn to sing, move, listen, play instruments, and even create their own tunes. Our original curriculum blends math, science, social studies, literacy, and mindfulness (think yoga!) for a uniquely KinderCare way of learning the foundations of music.
Phonics Adventures® (2 – 4 Years)
Learning how to read is a whole lot of fun at KinderCare! We help kids grow to love books and words (and get ready for kindergarten) in our Phonics Adventures program. From discovering the basics of vowels to practicing poetry, kids learn all about letters and sounds in small-group lessons made just for their age group. (Bonus: Kids who attend our phonics program are more prepared than their peers for school—and we have the data to prove it.)
STEM Innovators (3-8 Years)
You’ve probably heard a lot about how important STEM education is for your child, but what does that really mean? Our STEM Innovators program takes kids’ natural ability to make sense of the world and applies it to robotics, chemistry, coding, geology, and more. While your child experiments, they’ll discover how to use technology to do amazing things!
“ Both of my boys have been attending Lombard KinderCare since they were three months old. My oldest is almost four and loves being in school, learning new and exciting things, and playing with his friends. It is such a joy for me to have him be so eager to go to school…he’s growing by leaps and bounds. The units the teachers teach are age-appropriate and very engaging. I especially like the enhanced curriculum giving the students an opportunity to boost their early math and reading skills. The teachers at Lombard KinderCare are extremely warm and friendly. My one-year-old smiles and laughs each morning as we walk into his room. Both the Center Director and Assistant Director are true professionals who will listen and work with you for the best interest of your child. My husband and I are both very happy with Lombard KinderCare!Show more
“ Dear KinderCare Family, It saddens us that our son Miles will be leaving KinderCare, but we wanted to send a special thank you to all of you. We chose KinderCare not knowing whether Miles was going to be a good fit, but Lindsey Forrest’s inviting attitude gave us the confidence to believe we made the right decision. We can’t thank you enough for all you’ve done for us. Because of Miles’ teachers and classmates, he has learned sign language, knows his ABC’s, can count to 18, loves to sing a handful of nursery rhymes, and has an impressively large vocabulary all at the age of 2 just to name a few things. Not to mention his amazing dance skills. We are so proud at how much he has learned at Kindercare, and there are no words that can explain how much we appreciate all you’ve done for us. We understand that being a teacher takes a lot of patience and passion, and we are so lucky that Miles experienced that kind of teacher at KinderCare. We understand that somedays are the best days and some days are the worst days, but I would like to tell you that Miles loved going to Kindercare any of those days. He would come home and tell us all about what teacher he saw that day with a huge smile on his face. When we would ask him if he had fun and if he liked his teacher he would shout yes. Your passion and patience has given Miles the direction to become the smart, happy, and sweet boy that we are so proud of. Kindercare has set our standards high when it comes to child care, and it was very hard to find a place that made us feel as comfortable as you have. We thank you so much for taking such great care of Miles, and thank you for all your patience and passion. Sincerely, Matt, Kathy, and MilesShow more
“ Our girls have been enrolled at KinderCare for the last three years and we continue to be pleased with the experiences at the Lombard KinderCare. They have always been willing to accommodate our many schedule changes which is truly a plus in today's hectic lifestyle. Moreover, our girls love everything about coming to KinderCare, extending from the teachers to their new friends. Bottom line, we feel comfortable when we go to work knowing our girls are safe and happy.Show more
“ Both of my children are so happy in their classrooms at KinderCare. My three-year-old has gone to this center since he was an infant, and at each stage I have been thrilled with his experiences there. Both of the boys have learned great socialization skills as well as getting developmentally appropriate curriculum. All of the staff is friendly and caring - I feel like we get a personalized experience every day!Show more
“ KinderCare Lombard has been a wonderful childcare experience for our family. All three of our children love going to 'school' at KinderCare. I love this center because I know that I have nothing to worry about while at work. When dropping off, my children all love to walk in the door, running to give their teachers a hug and to say hi to their friends. When it is time to go home, I get honest feedback about their day. When I drop off my infant, the teachers take the time to listen to how his morning was and truly care for my child. The center director is approachable and listens to parent feedback. When you walk in you feel the kindness and warmth of this nurturing environment. This center is truly a home away from home for my family.Show more
Frequently Asked Questions
What accreditations does KinderCare have?
We are your trusted caregiver. Our centers are state-licensed and regularly inspected to make sure everything meets or exceeds standards, including child-to-teacher ratios and safe facilities. Our centers aren’t just licensed—most are accredited, too! Find out more.
Do you offer part-time schedules at Lombard KinderCare?
Everybody’s schedule is different. We’re happy to offer quality, affordable part-time and full-time childcare. Drop-in care may also be available. Reach out to your Center Director to learn more.
How does naptime work at Lombard KinderCare?
Our teachers meet every child’s needs during naptime. Our teachers know how to get babies to nap. In fact, they are pros at getting children of any age to nap. Visit our article on "10 Ways We Help Kids Get a Great Daycare Nap" to learn more.
Do you support alternative diets?
We strive to be as inclusive as possible. To that point, we provide a vegetarian option at mealtime, take care to not serve common allergens and can adapt menus based on your child’s food sensitivities. If your child has additional needs, we’ll work with you to figure out a plan.
Are meals included in tuition? Can I choose to send my child with lunch?
We provide nutritious meals and snacks developed by a registered dietician to meet the needs of rapidly growing bodies and minds. If your child has special dietary requirements and you would prefer to bring in their lunch, please make arrangements with the center director.
Does my child need to be potty-trained?
Every child begins toilet learning at a different age. Until your child shows an interest in toilet learning, we’ll provide diaper changes on an as-needed basis. When your child shows an interest, we'll discuss how to work together to encourage toilet learning.
We're so proud!
AMERICA'S MOST ACCREDITED
What Learning Looks Like
We're the only company in early childhood education to select teachers based on natural talent. Being a great educator isn't enough though. KinderCare teachers are also amazing listeners, nurturers, boo-boo fixers, and smile-makers. Put more simply, we love our teachers and your child will, too.
Meet just a few of our amazing KinderCare teachers!
A KinderCare Teacher With An Artist's Heart
"My classroom is full of art!” says Mary Annthipie-Bane, an award-winning early childhood educator at KinderCare. Art and creative expression, she says, help children discover who they really are.
An Educator Dedicated to Making Readers
Soft-spoken, creative, and laser-focused on literacy, Alisha Jackson is a real role model for early childhood educators. “I am being the change I wish to see in the lives of children,” she says. Watch and find out how she helps children find a love of books and reading.
This Top Educator Teaches With Her Whole Heart
Music is learning. It lights up everything” says this award-winning early childhood educator. Attiya Mirza is particularly adept at using music to teach: She recorded a pop album in her native Pakistan and was also the captain of the Pakistani national cricket team (leadership skills are extremely helpful in a class full of three-year-olds)!
Gallup - Great Workplace Award
We put our best-in-class teachers in a best-in-class workplace. We're so proud to have been named one of Gallup's 37 winners of the Great Workplace Award. When you put great teachers in an engaging center, your children will experience an amazing place to learn and grow.
Who Are KinderCare Families?
They hail from hundreds of cities across the country from countless backgrounds, and proudly represent every walk in life. What our families have in common, though, is the want to give their children the best start in life. We are so proud to be their partner in parenting.
Hear from just a few of our amazing KinderCare families.
A Globe-Trotting Family Finds a Home in Houston
Four young children, four different passports, two languages, two full-time jobs…oh, and a few triathlons thrown in for good measure. Meet the globe-trotting Colettas—a family on the go.
This Inspirational Family Puts Love First
Music to our ears. Meet the Bachmans, an all-American, multi-racial family from Chicago who show us all what love is really about.
A Family That is Busy with a Capital "B"
When both parents are professionals, carving out some family "together" time can be a serious challenge. See how the Dorazios do it—from Taco Tuesday to trips to the shore.