In today's busy world, it's a necessity to juggle a thousand things at once, and this means that you can't be by your child's side at all times. When it is time to go back to work and leave your child in the hands of a day care centre, it can certainly be a time of mixed emotions. You should know, however, that child day care can be an extremely enriching experience for young children who benefit from their interactions with other children and the carers at day care.
This is not to say that you should opt for the day care centre that is cheapest or closest to your house, but you should look at various options before making a final decision. Here are four questions that you need to ask on any tour of a day care centre.
What do you serve for meals and snacks? This might not sound like an essential question, but the food your child eats can greatly impact their mood and their health. At home, you have control over everything that goes into your child's mouth, and so you should have the same knowledge about this at a day care centre. If your child has specific allergies or food needs, you should also ask about how those would be catered to.
How are behavioural problems managed? Young children go through many changes, and things like pushing and biting can certainly take place. This is an inevitability, but there are multiple ways to deal with behavioural problems, and you should ask the staff about this to ensure that their philosophy correlates with your own and to make sure you can protect your child from any misbehaviour.
What is the educator-to-child ratio? This is an essential question to ask at every centre you visit. The more carers a facility has, the more attention your child will have, which could be beneficial for their development. It also means that in the case of behavioural problems, individual children can be monitored and cared for more closely.
What activities will my child be engaged with? Of course, what your child will actually be doing is of the utmost importance. Let's say that you typically go to the park each day with your child. You wouldn't want this routine of outdoor activity to be interrupted by a day care facility that only provides indoor activities. Try to search for a day care centre that offers a blend of fun games, learning activities and activities that boost self-development.
If a day care centre can provide suitable answers to these questions, they are likely to be reputable and trustworthy, and an ideal place for your child to develop and grow.