Caring for Our Children (CFOC)

Chapter 5: Facilities, Supplies, Equipment, and Environmental Health

5.2 Quality of the Outdoor and Indoor Environment

5.2.1 Ventilation, Heating, Cooling, and Hot Water Type and Placement of Room Thermometers

Thermometers that will not easily break and that do not contain mercury should be placed on interior walls in every indoor activity area at children’s height.
The temperature of the room can vary between the floor and the ceiling. Because heat rises, the temperature at the level where children are playing can be much cooler than at the usual level of placement of interior thermometers (the standing, eye level of adults). Mercury, glass, or similar materials in thermometers can cause injury and poisoning of children and adults. Mercury is a potent neurotoxin that can damage the brain and nervous system (1). Placing a safe digital thermometer at the children’s height allows proper monitoring of temperature where the children are in the room. A thermometer should not break easily if a child or adult bumps into it.
Center, Early Head Start, Head Start, Large Family Child Care Home, Small Family Child Care Home
RELATED STANDARDS Indoor Temperature and Humidity
  1. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 2010. Mercury: Health effects.