Even though you’re already aware of the myriad benefits of childcare centres for your child, are you still having a hard time deciding on which one to devote your child to?
It’s not just about the safety of your child, after all, but also how he will respond to being entrusted to a childcare centre.
Of course, there’s also the question of whether your child will be able to enjoy all the benefits of these centres.
More often than not, you just have to be mindful of essential factors that go beyond just looking at any given child care centre’s licensing and registration. For your reference, we have outlined the seven main ones here.mm
1. What type of learning philosophy do they adhere to?
Childcare centres are educational institutions, after all, that have undergone substantial development through the course of history.
Now, parents have the privilege to help set up their children’s future education with the help of these learning centres.
You have probably already encountered the name “Montessori” before and know its deep connection to schooling. It has been around for decades and has acquired quite a reputation for good reason.
The advantage of a kids’ Montessori school is that it is aware of what a child needs in terms of ensuring her full development. It focuses on creativity and collaboration and even includes having fun and playing games.
That is, besides focusing on developing her core mental, physical, emotional, and social aspects. These are all innately included in any kind of Montessori child care program.
That said, a Montessori learning centre is just one example of the kinds of childcare centres that are probably available near your area. Find the time to learn about their teaching methods and type of education they offer so your child will have the best early learning preschool experience.
You can never go wrong with those that already have an established reputation, though.
2. How many children and staff does it cater at present?
Taking the time to know this will ensure your child will receive the amount of care and learning afforded to him. Most schools assign one teacher for up to four or five toddlers.
Anything above this should is no longer an optimal arrangement for your child might not get the proper amount of care and learning he needs. Take note that not all childcare centres have the same capacities. Certain institutions can accommodate hundreds of children at once. Find out whether this is ideal for your child or not.
Will your child connect well with his teacher?
Admittedly, this isn’t made obvious from the outset, and oftentimes, it’s best to rely on your gut when figuring this out.
You can always ask your child about his experience, but it’s crucial that your child will at least have an enriching student-teacher relationship built on trust, happiness, and exceptional learning.
3. What meals will they serve your child?
Since the centre will practically become a second home to your child, you have to take the time to know what types of meals they serve to kids.
It goes without saying that you should prefer those that serve nutritious meals as often as possible if not always.
4. Is the childcare centre near your home?
The location should never be overlooked as you will have to drive and commute to and from the centre on a regular basis.
Even if you did find an excellent childcare centre with the achievements and awards to prove it, it might not be suitable if it is too far from your home or just takes too long to get to.
Unless you’re willing to do lengthy commutes, that is.
It’s always recommended to choose one that is near your home or office simply because it lets you check up on your child easier as well. Furthermore, it ensures you’ll be able to get to her quickly in the event of an emergency.
5. Are they within your budget?
We all want to get value for money on anything we spend our hard-earned money on and choosing a childcare centre for your child is no different.
Montessori child care still falls well within the average costs of highly accredited childcare centres, though some will probably find $170 a week already a bit on the expensive side.
What matters the most is for your child to have the best experience and, of course, acquire valuable learning along the way. Any centre that manages to do that for your child, while making sure he is kept happy and safe is always a winner.
6. How do they maintain their lines of communication?
Communication should be any childcare centre’s priority, especially as far as parents are concerned. Certain centres might give you a weekly report of your child’s performance and progress that will be delivered to you. Others will rely largely on apps to do this, allowing you to track your child daily.
All the better if a centre encourages active involvement as well, so you will also have an inkling about how early learning preschool usually goes. Being actively involved undoubtedly puts to rest any worries you might have regarding your child’s safety.
7. Will they be able to fit your schedule with yours?
Last but not least is how much flexibility they have with regards to your schedule. You have to know beforehand that not all childcare centres can offer you enough versatility when it comes to scheduling pick-ups and drop-offs.
If the opening hours of the centre are long, then this shouldn’t be much of an issue. Not overlooking this only means you’ll be able to effectively forgo any avoidable stress in the future.
These are but the elements you need to consider when selecting a childcare centre. In the end, the decision still rests solely in your hands.
If you’re still having second thoughts, one good way of arriving at a solid decision is to simply trust your instinct. If you think there’s something off with a leading childcare centre, then it’s probably best to consider other options.