Friendly URL: www.mass.gov/dph/mcap

MA Children at Play is a childhood obesity prevention program which aims to improve the nutrition and physical activity policies and practices of child care settings.

Goals of the MA Children at Play Program

  • To provide child care facilities with an easy way to evaluate their nutrition and physical activity practices, and identify areas where they would like to improve.
  • To help Massachusetts facilities reach the state requirement for 60-minutes of active, structured play each day.
  • To promote age-appropriate, active play in preschool children
  • To promote healthy eating in preschool children
  • To improve foods offered at child care settings
  • To provide information and handouts that child care providers can give parents to help their children live healthy at home.

As part of the MA Children at Play program, a Mentor is assigned to work with child care providers to conduct a self-assessment of the facility, set goals, and create an action plan that works for each child care provider’s unique setting.

To help child care providers achieve their goals, MA Children at Play provides workshops, resources and structured activities to be used in child care settings.

The Massachusetts Children at Play program combines two well-known programs: Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care and I am Moving I am Learning (IMIL).

This program allows preschoolers to engage in fun, age-appropriate structured play and learn about and eat healthy foods. Families receive extra materials and information to help their children live a healthy lifestyle at home.

More Resources for MA Children at Play


This information is provided by the Wellness Unit within the Department of Public Health.