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Our Mission

We believe that the best place for kids to be is outside with their friends! Elements sets itself apart by balancing outdoor exploration with purposeful time indoors. Each day’s direction is guided by the elements and the children’s curiosity in what the season brings. We are enthusiastic about play-based learning in nature and sharing our love for adventure with the next generation! We are looking to connect with a community of families who share our passion and want to instill that appreciation in their children.

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About Us

The Founders

We’re Nicole and Emily- best friends, hiking buddies, co-adventurers, self-growth extraordinaires, and business partners! Since we met 11 years ago as American Sign Language interpreters, we’ve set and smashed shared goals together. We’ve been by each other’s side to new summits, on the most incredible trails and also the most difficult. We ran the journey to our first, second…tenth half-marathons together; We’ve been through mud, barbed wire, and scaled walls together. We conquered backpacking the 93-mile Wonderland Trail together. We nerd out to the sight of marmots and bears, agree there’s nothing quite like a sunrise in the mountains, and revel in the therapy nature and movement provides us. We’ve been roommates, each other’s bridesmaids, and now we’re walking alongside each other through motherhood. Our friendship and support of one another has so many flavors that we refer to one another as Chonga- yes, the “Everything” bagel from Starbucks. We are beyond thrilled to be on this next adventure of our lives together, as co-teachers who cannot wait to share our love of nature and play with your littles!

The Operators

We are Nicole and Michael, dual sides to a shared coin. We have been married for 7 years and have 2 wild and crazy sons together. We originally met in passing as teenagers, crossed paths again many years later as adults, and the rest is history! Fun fact: we got married on a 10-mile hike to Packwood Lake with all our friends and family in tow! Nicole is the extrovert to Mike’s introvert; the tidy-up to his deep clean; the podcast to his curated playlists, the nature to his technology, and the action to his plans. We’ve shared many seasons in our life together and have always found a way to support each other’s dreams. Elements Total Child Care was originally founded between two best friends with a dream for sharing the love of the outdoors with the next generation, and Mike was an integral part in making that dream come true; supporting the ever-changing landscape of the plans and giving up his home to welcome in families searching for childcare. After months of helping behind the scenes, Mike felt the calling to join Nicole at Elements as her Assistant Teacher to spend more time with his family and officially answer all the kids requests for more “Dada Mike”!

Nicole Norman

Hello! I’m Nicole! I’m a member of the 2 under 2 club and professional diaper changer. For 12 years worked in the Puyallup School District as an Sign Language interpreter and a building coordinator, because of this I’m wonderful at multitasking and routines. I’ve worked in a variety of grades and settings implementing special education goals and developmental techniques. I’m a natural born learner and know a little bit about A LOT of things. I’ve helped children navigate speech and learning delays in a professional sense, as well as at home with my own son! I’m resourceful and inquisitive, always happy to talk about the wonders of the world and I believe all things are better outdoors with a snack in hand! If I wasn’t an early learning provider, I would definitely have my own true crime podcast or be on the cast of the Real Housewives of Pierce County.

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Hours and Pricing


Elements is open Monday-Friday 7:30am-4:30pm


Registration and enrollment fee:

$150 paid upon enrollment to secure spot


Newborn (under 1): $1495 per month

Infant (under 2): $1388 per month

Toddler (2-5): $1324 per month

Pre-school*: $1,000 per month

*Pre-school tuition rates apply to children that leave to attend an outside pre-school during care hours.

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Enrollment Info

Current spots available: 0


(12-23 months)


(24 months - 5 years)


(3-5 years + enrolled in preschool)

Waitlist Available

Waitlist Available

Waitlist Available




Process for Enrollment:

Availability last updated January 1, 2024

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Daily Schedule

A Day in the Life at Elements!


Drop off, free play




Circle time for checking the calendar and weather


Outdoor Play! *weather pending activities*

Art, project, Sit Spots, scavenger hunt, counting, sorting, patterns, gross muscle, team building activities, or other collaborative tasks




Restorative time: Naps and quiet activities




Free outdoor play and parent pick-up

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Gear List


Best materials will vary as summer warmth fades. Soft wool and fleece blend layers are key for chillier mornings and cotton and soft denims for warm afternoons. Rayon is the best material for the rainy season.


Best materials for winter are soft woolen thermals, fleece blended with cotton, silk, denim, and cotton clothes. These materials help retain heat within the body and fight cold.


Best materials for spring are cotton, linen, cotton blends, hosiery or soft denim. Kids also need clothes that resist water and keep them dry. Rayon is the best material for the rainy season.

Full Body Rain Suit

Rain boots






Best materials for summer are cotton, linen, denim and suede. These materials absorb sweat and are light on the body. Cotton and linen also allow air circulation, keeping the body cool and preventing rashes.

Long Sleeve UV Protective swim shirt.

Multipurpose shoes + Sneakers

Sun hat



*Links are to recommended gear, but are not sponsored

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Resources & Research

Time in nature can improve our mental health, boost our mood, and sharpen our cognition.

Playing outside promotes socialization opportunities and education in its broadest sense.

No matter what the weather brings, playing outside is good for kids. There is scientific evidence that playing outside improves health, and children of all ages love it.

Family Resources

We're here to help!

If you would like more information on a topic that you don't see here, let us know!

Early Intervention Services

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Policies and Forms

In efforts to minimize our environmental impact, longer documents such as the Parent Handbook and Health Policies will only be printed upon request.

Forms that require a signature will be provided in your enrollment folder.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Where can I find a copy of the Parent Handbook and Policies?

A: Here's the link for you right here!

>>Parent Handbook<<

Q: What do parents need to bring daily?

A: Diapers if your child isn't potty trained, pull-ups if needed, at least one change of clothes, and necessary gear for the season. You are welcome to leave outdoor gear at the daycare for convenience! Other than that, we've got everything covered!

Q: Does Elements Total Child Care provide transportation to preschool?

A: Currently, transportation to-from preschool must be arranged by parents. We are excited that pre-school transportation is in our growth plan! Stay tuned!

Q: Do you offer part time care or drop-ins?

A: No we do not.

Q: Does Elements Total Child Care provide food for the children?

A: We sure do! We provide daily breakfast, lunch & snack!

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Contact Us


Farwest Dr SW

Lakewood, Wa 98498

Email Address

Phone Number


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