It cannot be overstated how crucial early childhood is in a person’s life. Every experience of a child during their early learning years has a lasting impact on their brain, character and personality. During this period they grow and develop their cognitive, social-emotional, and physical skills.
When parents look for the best child care options they can enrol their kids into, whether it’s a daycare, home-based care, centre-based care, or casual & occasional care, they need to get all the information about the centre and evaluate thoroughly if it matches their needs.
Having a safe environment, a wide range of learning activities and resources, and qualified carers and educators are some of the top considerations in choosing care for kids.
Child care in a convenient area
One of the most vital factors that a family considers in choosing child care for their kids is the location. Some parents want it to be close to home, some want it to be near their work.
Families prefer local child care centres when they search for a service they can entrust their children. Having care for kids near home saves a family the time and hassle of going out of their way to drop off their children at the centre when they’re on their way to work.
Another top consideration in choosing a location is the facility’s proximity to the parents’ work area. Having a convenient location can take away the worries and stress of a parent, it can also minimize the time spent commuting and the cost of transit fees and gas going to the child care centre.
In addition, proximity to services and amenities that the family often visit can be a valuable point to look into like stores, personal services like dentists or doctors, parks, and playgrounds.
Using trusted search platforms like Space makes it easy for a family to find child care in their desired area. Parents can simply go to space.myxplor.com and input their suburb or postcode in the search box. Space will provide a list of centres available in the area. They can also filter the centres based on the type of care, their ratings, fees, special offers and child capacity.
School Hours of the child care service
Parents have different schedules and time needs. Thankfully, there are different kinds of child care that can meet these needs.
Parents with full-time jobs usually need regular supervision and care for their children. Long daycare centres are the common choice among two-income families since they can leave their children for long hours a day during the work week. Parents drop off their kids before their work begins and picks them up after the work day.
Then there are families who only need periodic or need-be basis care for their kids. Occasional and flexible care for kids is the best option for those who don’t intend to send their kids to child care regularly. This is helpful for parents who have urgent appointments, emergencies or a need to catch up on errands or housework.
For a family that requires help in taking care of their children before or after regular school hours or outside the standard 9 am-3 pm school hours, out-of-school hours care (OSHC) is the child care to go for.
There is also child care for kids that offer special care on school holidays which can cost a little more than what a regular child care centre would charge per hour.
Qualified and nurturing teachers and staff
When looking for child care services or care for kids, having a qualified carer and educator is very important. Carers and educators who specialize in supervising children as young as babies up to until eight years old play an important role in the early learning years of a child. They’re experienced in observing and documenting a child’s growth and development.
Early on they can tell if a child has any sign of delays or difficulties in terms of their cognitive, social and emotional progress. They help children manage and improve their challenges and they focus on the strengths of the child so adapt their environment to their needs accordingly.
It is important for teachers or educators to build positive relationships and strong bonds with each child to make them feel they are safe and cared for. Engaging in their play, asking questions, attaining their needs and likes, and looking out for their well-being makes a lot of positive difference too
Aside from checking the centre’s website or Facebook page, it can be very helpful to you if you read parent reviews on listing platforms like Space. You can go through verified feedback and ratings from actual and genuine parents with children enrolled in the childcare centres you’re viewing.
Families share information about the centre, what the services offer, their experience with the centre’s staff team and educators whether they’re friendly and easy to get along with. You’ll find a wide range of comments that will help you have a better overview of a centre.
Positive learning environment
Families try to find child care providers that foster a positive and safe learning environment and collaborate with the parents and communities.
The child care staff team, including teachers, are vital in creating a nurturing and responsive environment in the classroom and school that fosters positive social and emotional development.
The education team need to establish strong bonds and good relationships with the kids in the centre to help them build their trust and sense of security. Once this is in place children feel confident to explore, learn and experience more.
More than just being friendly, making the kids, as well as their families, sincerely feel welcome and at home leads to amazing outcomes for the learners. It opens opportunities for the educator to collaborate with the family and better understand a child in terms of their development, temperament, interests and communication style.
Top-notch parent engagement
Having the right care for kids also means having amazing parent engagement. In taking care of children, parents can take advantage of all the educational assistance they can get from educators and carers.
Parents appreciate services that show genuine care for kids. Establishing communication, providing opportunities for parents to engage with the service, sharing information or insights about the child’s learning journey, and celebrating children’s success and development with their families are green flags in a child care service.
Receiving extra information and resources from the service such as food and nutrition tips for kids, photos of their children during activities, and happy and friendly talk about how the child is progressing does not cost much but goes a long way in strengthening relationships with a family.
It is imperative for a child care facility or a school to have indoor and outdoor spaces that allow children to engage in quality learning experiences.
An outdoor setting in child care must be conducive to physical activities, social interactions, and imaginative play. There are many benefits to learning outside, especially in natural outdoor environments that enable exploration, and discovery.
Physical activity in natural environments makes a kid happy, friendly and even thrilled. It is proven that green environments improve children’s mental and physical well-being. There are studies about physical activities bringing positive emotions and good behaviour among kids.
Early learning programs and curriculum
By the time children are five years old, they will have developed all the necessary life skills they need this is why early childhood education is the building block of learning. It lays the foundation for a child’s cognitive, social and emotional development throughout their life.
When you try to find child care a good early childhood education program must be a priority. Education programs offered by services are ideally dynamic, challenging, enriching and carefully planned. There’s a wide range of resources and activities available that may incorporate songs, books, art, games, toys and nature exploration.
Some key components of an effective program and curriculum are having sufficient learning time and Australian government-approved student-teacher ratios.
Teachers provide the foundation for the development of literacy skills of children and increase their interest and understanding of reading. A good curriculum paired with a qualified educator empowers kids to learn to communicate through gestures, sounds and words.
Over time, it’s ideal for children to develop their thinking ability and understanding of how things work. This is vital in their day-to-day experiences.
An effective and relevant program also guides a child to exhibit self-control. They begin to express and manage how they feel. Knowing how to deal with and resolve conflicts is essential to their development.