Kara Tolson, Center Director
Ages: 2 years to 12 years
Route 202 Central Ave. Lake Arbor
Elementary Schools Bussed To:
Lake Arbor Elementary, Kingsford Elementary, Kettering Elementary, Ernest Everett Just Middle School ( Only children under the age of 12)
Our center is accredited by NAEYC.
Meet Kara Tolson, Our Center Director
At KinderCare Since: 2017
Education: Associate's Degree
Favorite Children's Book: Cinderella
Meet Kara Tolson! She is the Center Director at Lake Arbor KinderCare in Mitchellville, Maryland. Nicole attended Prince Georges Community College, where she earned an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education. She has been with KinderCare since 2017. Every day, Nicole enjoys helping children learn and discover their true potential. Her favorite quote is, “In teaching others we teach ourselves.” Outside of work, Nicole enjoys going on bike rides with her family and taking trips to the beach.
AMERICA’S MOST ACCREDITED
Nationally only 10% of daycares are accredited - nearly 100% of our learning centers are. That’s a big difference, and that means KinderCare kids are getting the very best. Here’s why.
Lake Arbor KinderCare Programs
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!
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!
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.
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.
Don't take our word for it. Hear what our families have to say about our amazing center!
On October 2, 2016 I was awarded custody/Guardianship of my nephew and I was looking for a daycare to send him to. I remembered he was in KinderCare where he lived when he was in foster care, so I went on the internet and looked up KinderCare and I saw the one from Lake Arbor. Let me tell you ever since he has been going there, he loves it and the Directors, Ms.Rhonda and Ms.Nicole are amazing; they are so kind and very welcoming. Before he even started going there, just throughout the enrollment process, they were amazing I would definitely recommend everyone to take there kids there. The environment is so nice and they treat your babies as if they were their own babie. It's such a loving place to send your kids! My nephew's teacher, Ms.Raven is a very wonderful person and keeps you informed on everything about your child. I could go on and on! Keep up the great work KindaCare LakeArbor!”
Dinetra S. - KinderCare Parent
All parents understand how difficult it is to entrust their care to someone else. When I first discovered KinderCare Learning Center, Lake Arbor, I was hesitant because the school was located in a shopping center and slightly larger than my daughter’s previous daycare facility. During the tour I was impressed by the cleanliness, the warm smiles from the children and teachers, the detailed curriculum and the educational but fun environment. Immediately it felt like an extended family was focused to assist in heightening my daughter’s academic advancement. It has been nearly three years since my daughter started KinderCare Learning Center, Lake Arbor. Every day, she comes home with a new song, artwork and/or academic lesson. She is starting Kindergarten in a few weeks and she has learned to actively socialize with students and teachers, sign language, numbers, letters, days of the week, months of the year, and best of all, she can read. I can honestly say she is more than ready for Kindergarten. I’m so thankful that I found KinderCare Learning Center, Lake Arbor.”
Sharron L. - KinderCare Parent
Aaron and Alexis have been with KinderCare since the Summer of 2010. It has been a truly wonderful experience for both my children and me. Aaron and Alexis enjoy being with the teachers each day during summer camp as well as before and after going to school. We are happy in knowing that our children are in a safe and secure environment and in knowing that they are well taken care of. We appreciate KinderCare and the service it provides for our family.”
Arlene W. - KinderCare Parent
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.
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 Lake Arbor 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 Lake Arbor 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.