Finding the right childcare centre will stir up a whole range of guilty emotions. Unfortunately, as mothers, we really don’t want to leave our most precious person in the hands of strangers.
However, there are many positives for both yourself and your child as a great early childcare centre becomes the home away from home.
Picking the right childcare service will nurture and enhance the development and growth of your child through play and socialization with others.
A mother knows her child the best, so before you begin your search for the right childcare centre, ask yourself what you are wanting from a centre.
Is it someone to look after your child for a couple of hours or a centre that provides early education for your child? Once you understand what type of care best suits your needs, then it’s time to find the perfect daycare centre for you and your child.
Here we have the top 7 questions you should ask a childcare centre:
1. What is Your Approach to Discipline?
It is the most critical question to ask a daycare centre basically because you can tell a lot about a provider’s general philosophy by how they choose to discipline the children in their care. Ask specific questions like does the staff use a raised voice to reprimand children? Does their approach differ depending on the age? Are time-outs used, and if so, what does that look like? Are there punishments or consequences for bad behaviour? Every parent handles discipline differently though it’s important to know the general attitude of the daycare centre.
2. How Many Children Does A Caregiver Attend?
It is another must-ask question so you can rest assured that your provider has the resources required. A low ratio is good, as the caregiver can fully attend to each child’s physical and emotional needs of your child.
3. How Do You Group Children By Age?
The grouping of children by age is important as children of each age require different care. For example, the needs of a 5-month-old are very different compared to those of a 3-year-old. You have to make sure your child is treated among their age category.
4. What Is A Day’s Routine?
Knowing what your child does during the day is important. Is the daycare centre highly structured or does it operate on an all-day free play model with meal breaks. It doesn’t matter if your preference lies somewhere in between, it’s just great to get a sense of what exactly your child will doing each day.
5. Do You Provide Any Educational Curriculum?
Early education involves play-based learning it’s the sum total of all the interactions, experiences, activities, routines and events that happen in the early learning program environment from when a child arrives until they depart.
6. Are Meals and Snacks Provided?
Some daycare centres provide meals, while others do not. If you don’t have to pack lunch for your child remember that’s an extra 15 minutes of sleep! If food is offered, ask about what they serve so you can make arrangements if any of the food is off-limits for your child.
7. Are Children Required To Be Up-To-Date on Immunisations?
Remember sickness spreads like wildfire wherever there’s a group of kids, and babies who are not old enough to have received all their vaccinations are particularly vulnerable. Therefore you should absolutely ask about the daycare centre’s vaccination policy and what steps they take to enforce it.
Do your research by checking out a number of daycare centres before making your final decision. Go online and read the reviews, book a centre tour and speak with the director so that you can compare. Some may even let you have a trial or orientation to ensure you are completely satisfied.
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