A guide to selecting child careSelecting child care can be a difficult process for families. Your child may be spending quite a lot of time there, so it’s important to select child care carefully.
Selecting child care can be a difficult process for families. Your child may be spending quite a lot of time there, so it’s important to select child care carefully.
Generally, there are three areas you want to consider when choosing child care. Those are:
Caregivers. Spend time with the person who will be taking care of your child. See how they interact with your child and other children. See if they are nurturing and willing to talk and listen to your child.
Ask about their past experiences in caring for children and about their educational background that helps them understand how children grow and develop.
Watch to see if children are treated with respect and affection. Ask how the provider would handle a particular situation, such as discipline or biting. Talk to other parents that use the program.
Place and program. Is it clean, safe and inviting, both indoors and outside? Are snacks and meals nutritious and appealing to children? Are there organized activities? Does the caregiver know CPR and emergency procedures? Are hand washing and other sanitary steps followed?
Play. Children learn by playing. Are quiet times, active play, indoor and outdoor play times a part of your child’s day? Are activities geared to your child’s age? Are toys and books available to the children at all times? How often and what type of TV and videos are watched?
Remember to contact Child Care Resource and Referral. Referral counselors can talk with you about the options for child care that are available in your community.
You know your child best. Take the time to select a caregiver for your child that matches your family’s goals and values.
This article was provided by Child Care Resource and Referral, a nonprofit organization that provides community-based services for families seeking child care, supports individuals and programs that care for children and builds connections to generate activism for child care issues. For more information, call (320) 759-3993.