Any parent will agree that choosing a daycare facility is a challenging task. After all, leaving your child under someone else’s care can make you anxious. You may even want to give up your search for daycares due to the many factors you must consider.
However, the purpose of sending kids to childcare centers is far greater than the challenges you will face. Sending your little one to a child care center gives you peace of mind they are well taken care of as you work. Daycares also provide a suitable environment for young ones to learn, grow, and thrive. According to study findings reported by the American Psychological Association, children who receive high-quality child care perform better in science and math.
So, how do you make sure you are making the right choice? In this article, we discuss ways to choose the perfect daycare model for your child.
Research Different Daycare Models
Research will help you learn more about the two main types of childcare center models: in-home daycares and group daycares. So, what is the difference between in-home or home-based daycares and group daycares? It is simple.
In-home childcare centers operate from someone’s home, where the caregiver cares for kids attending the daycare alongside their children. While these centers provide personalized care for each child, they are less structured, meaning they don’t follow a schedule or program. Not to mention, if the caregiver is sick, your child might not receive care.
With this in mind, it is better to choose group or center-based daycares. These childcare centers are in buildings outside someone’s home. They are licensed, have trained staff, and offer different programs and learning curricula like schools. You can be sure your child will always have someone to supervise them while they play and learn.
Consider Programs Provided in Daycares
During your search for daycares, you will find that most of them offer different programs based on age groups. For example, there are programs for infants, toddlers, twos, and preschoolers. Each program provides personalized care and age-appropriate activities.
Given daycares have unique features, ask caregivers in different centers which approach they use to promote learning. The right daycare will provide a play-oriented and child-centered curriculum. These learning approaches encourage children to develop a love for learning.
Ensure the learning practices in your child’s future daycare are age-appropriate and meet state guidelines. As a parent, you want your child to receive high-quality education from an early age. Based on research findings cited in Forbes, high-quality early childhood education is vital for success in school, the workplace, and social settings.
Recommendations given by other parents, be it friends or family, can help you choose the correct daycare model for your little one. Listen carefully to what these parents say about child care centers near you. The best childcare facility will receive positive reviews like: “My child’s daycare facility is clean, tidy, and safe” and “Caregivers in the center are cheerful and trained to care for infants and toddlers.” You can also check online for testimonials and referrals to the best daycares for your child.
Visit Childcare Centers
While you can get every detail about childcare centers online, visit each of your top choices in person. During your visit, observe the environment. Are the exterior entrances guarded, or have access control systems to prevent unwanted guests? Does the facility have security cameras installed in classrooms and the playground?
Check if the center of your choice understands the importance of a safe surface for playgrounds by installing one. If the daycare center is dirty and untidy, cancel it off your list. The last thing you want is to enroll your child in an unhealthy environment. You should also monitor the teacher-child ratio and ask about experience, licensing and accreditation, and health policies. That way, you can be sure the daycare meets all the health and safety requirements imposed by state authorities.
Choosing the perfect daycare model for your child is crucial for their personal growth, education, and future success. However, it takes a lot of work, given the many options available. To ensure you make the right choice, you must research and understand different daycare models. Also, ask for recommendations, review learning techniques used in daycares, and tour other centers to get firsthand experience of their services.
Sandra Chiu works as Director at LadyBug & Friends Daycare and Preschool.