choosing a childcare center for your child

Quite frankly, it can be a lot balancing family life and work as parents, which is why it’s perfectly fine to seek a little bit of assistance with the kids if it ever comes down to it.

Accepting the fact that you need help is the easy part, choosing a childcare facility that would be an ideal fit for your child is where you’ll have your work cut out for you.

Depending on what kind of care your child needs; full-time or part-time, or perhaps for specific periods such as after school or for summer camp, you’re sure to find a daycare facility that offers such services.

What childcare services are available to choose from?

No matter what form of daycare service you enroll your baby in, what matters is that they are well cared for, protected, and supervised.

The following are childcare options you can choose from:

In-home Day Care

Home daycare services are small scale. They are often run within the childcare provider’s home and have a limited capacity in terms of the number of children that can be enrolled.

In some cases, the caregivers are required to be properly trained and licensed, while at other times there are no such requirements.

While the environment can certainly be conducive and ideal for children of different needs, it’s important to note that home daycares can be a bit expensive and if the caregiver happens to fall sick or is unavailable, it isn’t likely that there would be a substitute.

Day Care centers

Group daycare services or daycare centers often vary between large, well-established facilities and smaller centers. Kids are usually divided by age group.

Larger centers tend to have more staff and can accommodate more children compared to smaller ones. Their setting is quite similar to the way schools are run, in the sense that they offer tuition and there are separate sections for children of different age groups.

Six important factors to consider when looking for a childcare facility

While you are obligated as a parent to choose the best childcare facility for your child, it’s also just as important to pick one that works best for your family and doesn’t conflict with your work schedule and other duties.

Before enrolling your child in a daycare, no matter how right the environment feels or how well the caregivers seem to interact with children. Ensure to have a one on one discussion with the director to get important information concerning your child’s well-being and other related topics.

If you’re considering dropping by a daycare center here are a couple of things to look out for and questions you should ask during your sit down:

1. National accreditation and licensing

As we’ve mentioned previously, not all daycares are required to be licensed. However, those that undergo occasional inspections by childcare agencies are an exception and must be licensed by the state.

A licensed childcare service is a more suitable option since they are under the watchful eye of the law and must adhere to standard safety and disease control practices otherwise they run the risk of being shut down.

A licensed daycare center is more likely to stay on its toes and follow guidelines to a tee, which means your child’s health and safety will remain a priority.

2. Cleanliness

The state of the environment in which your baby will probably be spending most of his/her day must be hygienic at all times.

Your first impression is a big deal, and for a better opinion, it’s preferable if you show up unannounced. This way you’ll have a glimpse of how the surroundings will be when you aren’t around.

If you find a daycare that prepares meals for kids, it’s essential that staff wash their hands before doing so, and before and after each diaper change.

3. Safety

The right daycare for your family is the one that makes your children’s interests and safety a priority.

As such, endeavor to pay close attention to pieces of equipment around child care facilities and ensure that the surroundings are clean and free of any choking hazards.

There should be age-appropriate toys for younger children; babies and infants, while older children should also have their toys which should be kept away from babies to avoid accidents.

The center should have a regular first aid kit and pediatric first aid for younger babies, look out for smoke detectors and see if cleaning supplies and harmful objects are kept out of children’s reach.

4. Curriculum

Daycare centers are a dime a dozen these days, especially if you live in the big city. Each center offers different child care programs and curriculum activities to ensure that your child’s day is spent well.

However, parents must understand that kids learn at different rates and have their specific interests. And it would take highly-trained adults who truly understand children to be able to identify each child’s strong suits and what areas they need extra help with.

A highly qualified daycare will integrate and tailor age-appropriate activities and childcare programs to suit the needs of every child in its care.

A good childcare service should have a roster of well-trained, attentive, and dedicated caregivers. All their staff must be well versed in every aspect of childcare and must be capable of administering CPR.

Make the effort to know whether or not the daycare facility offers proper training in case of medical issues or allergic reactions.

5. Care provider to child ratio

Daycare centers with a balanced caregiver-to-child ratio are the perfect choice for any family.

In a scenario where an instructor has a fair number of children to teach and care for, it’s very unlikely that the instructor would be stressed out or overworked.

This means there is no reason why your child shouldn’t get enough attention and supervision. It’s a great idea to inquire from the family day care provider or manager about teacher turnover rate and performance.

If your child has any existing health issues or allergies, you must relay all such information to the caregiver to ensure that they are handled properly when you aren’t present and that your child remains comfortable throughout their stay.

6. Cost of tuition

The price of tuition is an important factor to consider if you’re working on a budget. While some child care centers can be a bit pricey, you shouldn’t let this deter you as there are a ton of affordable alternatives with the same level of quality if not better.

Many day care centers are beneficiaries of federal tuition assistance programs, most of these childcare facilities offer reasonable discounts on tuition.

What questions should you ask in your search for an ideal child care center in Cleveland?

Looking for a Preschool Academy in Cleveland? As a parent you want your child to be in a safe, conducive, and comfortable environment so you don’t have to constantly worry about their wellbeing.

Aside from this, you also want to choose a childcare center that incorporates and enforces your ideals about childcare. In a nutshell, what you’re after is a homely atmosphere for your child.

Each of the following information can be acquired straight from the source, however, you can as well talk to current clients and other parents.

What is their take on discipline?

It’s necessary to find out a caregiver’s outlook on discipline. How does he or she handle a situation when a child acts out of line? Observe how the staff interacts with kids, do they reprimand bad behavior by yelling? or do they give time outs instead.

Pay attention to the children’s body language to see how comfortable they are with their instructors. Now, depending on your view on how children should be disciplined you can then decide whether or not your child belongs there.

Are kids grouped according to their age?

Children of different ages have different needs. Babies, infants, and toddlers need to be cared for in specific ways.

Are children cared for in small groups according to their age? If not, endeavor to find out what measures are in place to assist the caregiver in caring for children of different age groups to ensure they are all looked after.

Are children allowed to play outside?

Children must be allowed to spend time outside with each other daily. They make friends a lot easier this way and their communication skills will also be greatly enhanced in this free setting.

Inquire from the child care provider if there is an open space for recreation where kids can have fun and be easily supervised.

Are there protocols for injured or sick children?

Have a word with the person in charge on how specific situations are handled. You should also let them know if you’d like to be informed whenever your child is sick or injured no matter how minor. You should also seek to know if the tutors and minders are child care aware.

The importance of early childhood education

Learning is undoubtedly an essential part of every child’s life. A great daycare center must have a stimulating environment as well as highly qualified teachers with good work ethics according to the national association for the education of young children.

A great daycare is one with satisfied caregivers and teachers. If a caregiver is content with working conditions it becomes evident in student performance and it’s unlikely that they’ll leave their job.

A good child care facility aims for low turnover as kids tend to get accustomed to a particular instructor over time. High turnover can have adverse effects on a child’s learning.

Childcare and early childhood development

Childcare has a significant impact on a child’s development. They can connect and bond with kids their age in this setting, regardless of the group size.

They also learn to be comfortable with communicating with their peers and adults who aren’t their parents.

If you’re looking for childhood education in Cleveland, Ohio, for your toddler or preschooler, feel free to check out the Early Steps Learning Center.

Our Preschool Academy in Cleveland offers the best daycare services and will provide everything your child needs to excel academically. Most importantly they’ll acquire skills during their early years that will be beneficial to them as they grow older.

Conclusion

No one said choosing a daycare for your child would be easy. However, the process can be a lot more manageable by mapping out important details of what you want for your child.