Putting your little one in daycare is hard and choosing one is even harder! For one parent, a large-scale, clean daycare environment may be priority but for another the priority may be to opt for a child care center with lots of interactive play and one-on-one interaction.
This is why before touring daycare centers, you might want to prepare a list of questions to ask so that you can keep track of all the potential concerns you had in mind for your kid’s daycare.
Keep this list of questions handy to make the most out of your daycare visits:
Is the center qualified?
Before choosing a daycare center, make sure that they’re operating legally and have the documentation to prove it. It doesn’t hurt to ask for copies of state inspections and discuss the plans they have in order to resolve any violations. For in-home providers, enquire how long they’ve been in business and request for additional recommendations.
Follow up on the references provided by the center to make a confident choice for your child. Moreover, positive reviews from other parents are a plus!
What is the caregiver to child ratio?
To make sure that your child gets the attention they deserve, the teacher to child ratio should be as low as possible. For preschoolers the ratio is approximately1:71:10 depending on the state.
Experts say that understanding the caregiver turnover and classroom size can help parents determine if the daycare center is ideal for their child’s developmental and academic growth. Observe how the caregivers interact with the kids during the facility’s tour. Because children notoriously pick up from the environment, you’d want to surround them by teachers who make them feel safe and teach them to respect their peers.
What does the learning plan look like?
You want your toddler to be in a place with loads of learning and simulation opportunities.
When touring the facility enquire about their daily routine. Does it include activities like storytelling, sensory time, music classes and one-on-one interactions? Look for a program that supports all areas of your kid’s development — with dedicated time for physical play too.It’s crucial that the parents and teachers continuously work together to create directed lessons in addition to tracking each child’s progress.Make sure that the daycare providers encourage learning through exploration and structured as well as unstructured play.