We’d all love to be able to spend each and every day at home looking after our kids. However, for many of us, that simply isn’t possible. Because of work commitments, many of us end up having to rely on childcare. These can range from getting a family member to help out or placing your baby in daycare. It is important that whichever kind of childcare you decide on works for you and your baby. This blog post is full of plenty of tips to help you choose the best solution for you and your family.
Getting Family To Help
The Cheapest Option
Asking a relative to look after your kids is certainly the cheapest option out there. Grandparents will be happy to help look after their grandkids and will love spending time with them. The same goes for aunts and uncles. If you rely on distant relatives, such as cousins, nieces, and nephews, it might be a nice idea to thank them with a small gift such as a box of chocolates.
At Yours Or Theirs
When it comes to your family looking after your kids, they can either come to yours, or you could take your kids to theirs. Go with whichever option works best for those looking after the kids. Obviously, it makes sense to ask a relative who lives close to you. Ideally, they should be within walking distance. This then saves you driving for miles to drop your kids off before you head to work.
Don’t Take Anyone For Granted
As this is a free form of childcare, it can be all too easy to start taking your relatives for granted. Don’t just assume that they will be able to take care of your kids whenever you need a helping hand. You should appreciate that they will have their own life and might have other commitments to take care of. Therefore, it’s always good to have a backup form of daycare even if your relative does regularly look after your kids.
Hiring A Babysitter
Ask For References
If you are hiring a new babysitter, you should always ask for references. Even if it is just some word-of-mouth recommendations from friends. However, if you don’t know anyone who has used them before, they should have some references from other families they’ve worked for. If you want to, you can also contact their referees personally. Chatting with the other families can be a great way to help you make your final decision and pick a babysitter.
See How They Interact With Your Kids
Give your babysitter applicants a trial run with the kids to see how they get on together. Many babysitters will be happy to do this trial. It also makes their jobs easier if they get on well with the kids! The babysitter should be playful with the kids but also needs to be able to be stern with them when it is required. If your kids are old enough to talk, ask them what they thought of the applicant after the trial run. They’re the ones who will be spending a lot of time with him or her, so they need to be completely happy with your choice as well.
You might be feeling a bit worried about leaving your child with someone completely new. Even if you were happy with their interview and trial run. To keep your mind at ease, install some small surveillance kits into your home. These can be useful to help you decide whether or not you’ve made the right babysitter choice. Many small cameras can be hidden in pot plants or behind ornaments.
Enrolling for Daycare
Consider Your Budget
Enrolling your child in daycare is one of the most expensive options for childcare. But it can be very beneficial to your kids, as they will make lots of new friends and learn valuable skills. Before you start considering your local daycare centers, you need to decide on your budget. This will help you narrow down your search, and you won’t have to waste time looking around kindergartens that you can’t afford.
Look Around The Different Daycare Centers
You should spend some time looking around a number of local daycare centers. This will give you the chance to see what the atmosphere is like. You can also meet all the staff who work there. Make sure you take your kids with you when you look around. Try and judge your kids’ reactions to each of the centers to see which ones they prefer.
Speak To Staff
While you are looking at each daycare center, it is super important to speak to as many employees as possible. This gives you the chance to ask them questions regarding your children’s care. You might like to know the type of activities and games they do with the kids. They can also tell you about how they do nap times and snack times. If you have even the smallest worry, this is the chance to voice it. The staff will be able to give you plenty of peace of mind. You can also let them know if your children have any special requirements, such as specific diet needs.
Watch Out For Warning Signs
Once your children start at your chosen daycare center, you need to watch out for warning signs. These are signs that your children may not be enjoying it. One of the biggest signs is crying in the morning before daycare. A change in temperament should also give you cause for concern. If you are worried about your child at daycare, arrange a meeting with you and the staff. You can let them know that you are worried about your child, and they can keep an eye on him or her.
Going back to work can be daunting for parents. Hopefully, this blog has given you plenty of information on picking the best childcare for your child.