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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am considering taking a job as a Director of a Daycare/Preschool.<br><br>
Sam will be there (with me when he needs me but for all intents and purposes, he will be in a class just like all the other kids)<br><br>
I have pained over the downsides of this instead of continuing to be a SAHM with just him and me all day, picking wild strawberries, etc.<br><br>
So, I'd love to hear about some of the positive things you see in your child and in your daycare situation. Also, what do you love about your daycare? What do you wish would occur that is more AP and consistent with your lifestyle at home?<br><br>
Perhaps I can implement some of these things if I take this job.
 

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Well, my kid has never been in daycare, but I think I would love to do what you are doing.<br><br>
It's hard sometimes, finding enough stimulation for your child. Sometimes I think more structure would be good for her. I am planning to take her to some classes when I stop working and return to SAHM, and try to get her involved in more activities. We do alot of stuff at home, but I just feel uncreative, and like sometimes it would be nice to have the resources and activities that a daycare situation offers (especially since you will be there with him).<br><br>
I'm sure there will be down sides - not as much one-on-one time with him, but I really think that overall the situation sounds great. Kind of like being a SAHM but in a setting with a built-in playgroup and loads of activities, lol.
 

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I was very nervous about going back to work and putting my son in a daycare situation. Fortunately he has a personality that just seems to love it. He gets so much more stimulationthere than I could ever give him at home. The center is great. they have a routine for the kids.(7:00) breakfast, play, sing songs, do a craft, outdoor playground play, lunch, nap, wake up, afternon snack, I pick him up. (3:30)<br><br>
But in addition to this they have many other activities. Dance, Yoga, petting zoo, "Bike day", carwash day, daddy and donuts day, they always are doing something fun. I have picked him up at many different times during the day, and he is ALWAYS having fun, playing, talking away to the ladies, or the other kids. He honestly has a ball.<br><br>
He literally runs into their arms in the morning. I also think it helps with his verbal skills. I stayed home with him for a year, and sometimes I would be with him and quiet for a long time. I would forget to talk to him, ya know? But at school, there are always adults talking to him and he sings songs and talks now so much.<br><br>
He is very social and plays very well with other kids. I do not know if that is a result of daycare, or if that is his personality and that is why he LIKES daycare, but either way, he loves it.<br><br>
I think the most important thing is to have a good place. One that is not a "babysitter" but a real learning enviornment with many activities planned and followed through on. HTH
 

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There are so many things I love about my son's day care:<br><br><br>
- structured environment that I would have a difficult time providing (I'm not structured AT ALL... my son takes after my dh who is all about order.. order... order)<br><br>
- positive interaction with other kids (the center he is at is very good with chlld to child relationships... emphasizing the need for each person to have their personal space, play nice, etc. They also have a much wider range of ages in any given room than other day care centers. My ds has learned a lot being around kids older than him a year or two. Now he's the "older one" and it's really neat to see how proud and confident he is showing other kids what to do -- how to pour water for snack, arrange the chairs, etc.<br><br>
- they have a mud room - an all out get dirty paint the walls we can hose this room down type of place for all kids to play in ( every two rooms toddler and up have their own;GREAT in the winter)<br><br>
- They're always outside even on cold days.... Their cut off is 15 C +/- 10 C depending on the wind.<br><br>
- Teachers never sit around "watching kids." They're always interacting and helping kids do xyz activities. They set up informal work areas around the classroom (part of it is reenforced by how the play area is laid out) so that no more than 2 or 3 kids (sometimes just 1) are in any given area. They'll direct kids to different activities. There's always an easel set up with crayons on one side and markers on the other with paper for kids to draw on. There are quiet areas with pillows for kids just to go lay around and look at books.<br><br>
- music classes are offered<br><br>
- lots of engagement with parents<br><br>
- really strive to help children do things themselves : pouring from a cup, mixing up cookies (they have a full kitchen to do projects)<br><br>
- environment is very kid orientated<br><br>
- they have two people dedicated to curriculum - one for <3 and one for > 3. This also means that when someone is sick or out instead of the person with the least amount of experience filling in, it's the one with the most experience who the child sees every day. She's (The woman who helps with preschool/prek) is in and out of all the classrooms, interacting with parents, supporting teachers, etc.<br><br>
- teachers definitely get support. obviously with people dedicated to helping curriculum is one example but it's obvious in other ways as well. Teacher turnover unfortunately is unpreventable. Instead of a new teacher being thrown into a classroom, the teacher is in the room with the person who's been covering that room in the absence of a teacher also for at least 2 weeks for the majority of the day. Gives the children and the teacher time to adjust.<br><br>
I could go on and on...but I'll stop there. To say the least I love it!
 

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We started daycare when dd was 7 months old, for 4 hours twice a week. I was so clueless about what I wanted. After 2 months there was an opening at a local daycare that had been recommended to me but was full when I needed to start.<br><br>
The difference was dramatic! So much so that we switched to 2 full days so I could get some homework done after work. Why it is so much better:<br><br>
- no straps - they believe in the child not being "tied down" so there are no swings, bouncy seats, high chairs, etc<br><br>
- baby friendly - the little table for meals is baby size! Even my 10 month old can crawl to the chair and sit in it when she wants a snack<br><br>
- outside time<br><br>
- most of all, responsive to my parenting style. One caregiver would actually lie down with dd while giving her a bottle on a nap mat to get her to sleep. the caregiver had co slept with her kids and understood dd's need for contact<br><br>
So now I feel much better about the situation. I still hate leaving her, but I am able to work at a job I love and finish my education that I have made so many sacrifices for. Good childcare is invaluable!!!!!
 

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Well, I work in my son's classroom most of the day (I'm a toddler teacher and Assitant Director of the center I work at) so I'm still with him, but he really, truly loves daycare. When we are at home, he says the names of the other kids. It's so sweet. He misses them on weekends. He likes the other teachers and ADORES one of them so much.<br><br>
I love the structure and the ease of having fun, stimulating, planned experiences. I love that he interacts so well with the other kids. I love that he gets SO excited when we arrive each day, yelling HI to everyone he sees on the way inside. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
He has learned SO much in daycare. Yes, I could have done all this planning and activities at home, but he truly enjoys these things so much more at daycare. He's so much more willing to try things and do things if he sees the other kids doing them. On weekends, I still try to plan fun, stimulating activities for him but often I need that downtime. We use our time at home to just be together as a family-going swimming, playing outdoors, etc.
 

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ds loves going to daycare. it's an in-home situation and not a center, the sitter previously was a director for a child care center and has a degree in early childhood education. ds is 8 mo, her son is 14 months and sometimes she also has a 2.5 yo little girl. he loves watching everyone and gets so much out of it.<br><br>
I love knowing that he's being taken care of like one of her own while I'm at work. i never have to worry. that's the best thing about our day care.
 

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Daycares are so different from one another, but I can tell you what I like about mine:<br><br>
2 out of the 6 children there (6:1 is the limit in Mass.) are the provider's own daughters, who she homeschools. She has more time, energy, etc. for the other kids because of that since her girls are pretty self sufficient.<br><br>
My dcp believes very much in interacting with babies as people - not just buckling them into a swing, but letting them be involved with what's going on, talking to them respectfully, allowing them to play with the older children if it's safe to do so. She doesn't keep the smaller children separated. It's all one big happy family, so to speak.<br><br>
She considers herself part of the "team" in parenting my dd, but doesn't get nosy or intrusive. She plays, educates and disciplines in the same ways that I do.<br><br>
She's not perfect - I don't think any daycare could be - but she's working out really well. Dd is 1 yr. now and gets so excited when we pull into dcp's driveway! She obviously loves it there!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Its me, the OP!!!<br>
Revisiting this because although I did not take the position last year as previously described, starting tomorrow, they have asked me to serve as PT Director. 8-noon weekdays. So, I'm all abuzz, getting excited and curious about how this will work out now with toddler and slinging my new 5 month old too<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I'd have to echo many of the things others have already said about why I like my daycare. The number 1 thing is DD likes it; the number 2 thing is she is thriving. Those 2 things are my yardstick.<br><br>
Some specifics:<br>
--very low turnover of teachers which tells me they like it there, it's a good place to work, they feel valued, they like the kids, etc. etc.<br>
--no forced potty learning; when the child is ready then the process begins and not before<br>
--very gentle discipline which is age- and developmentally sensitive and appropriate; DD went through a month-long biting phase several months ago and I really liked how they handled it and kept me informed so I could be consistent at home<br>
--DD's previous teachers still make it a point to say hi to her and talk to her. I can tell how much she loves it.<br>
--there is group activity time, personal time when the kids individually decide amongst various play stations, and LOTS of outdoor time on the playground (in which I am a firm believer)<br>
--the teacher's soothe the kids to sleep at naptime; I've seen all of them on the floor rubbing someone's back, holding someone's hand, getting someone's dolls arranged just so, etc.<br>
--as a result of their cleanliness policies, DD has only been sick 1/2 a day since starting full-time in Jan 2005; I find that absolutely remarkable<br><br>
The one thing I might gripe a little about is the food. It's ok, but I wish there were less carbs and more protein. They're pretty good in the fruit/veggie department. Not a huge problem and certainly not a deal breaker given how positive the other aspects are.
 

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I, too, will echo what other PPs have said.<br><br>
Evan started daycare two days a week when he was four months old. We were not happy with his original daycare. It seemed as though the caregivers spent all their time meeting basic needs - diapering, feeding, etc. - and not much time meeting equally important needs for cuddling and playing.<br><br>
I was able to take him out of daycare last summer, while I made the transition to a new job and looked for a better setting.<br><br>
He started at a new daycare, 5 days a week from 8-2:30, this September. He has adjusted beautifully, and we are thrilled.<br><br>
They have two full-time teachers in the toddler room for up to 9 children. One teacher has been there for twenty years, the other for five. In addition to the teachers, there are a number of college students who work in the toddler room as part of their curriculum in the early childhood education program. They are placed there for the entire year, so their faces become familiar to the toddlers. In the end, there is one adult for every 2-3 children, which means lots of interaction and supervision.<br><br>
Evan gets huge amounts of stimulation and more structured activities than I could provide at home. For example, on Wednesdays, a music teacher comes to class and they sing songs together (he recently learned the hokey pokey :LOL ). We already have lots of artwork to hang on the walls; they are much more willing to let Evan get really messy with paint and crayons and watercolors and clay and playdough than I am at home. They also have access to so many supplies; yesterday they made collages with all kinds of brightly colored materials and a glue stick. They have tons of balls, toys, riding toys, wagons, books, a play kitchen, art supplies, a water table, a sand table... so much more than we can offer him at home.<br><br>
Evan truly enjoys the interaction with other children. He is our only child, so when he is home, it's pretty quiet, and I have had a difficult time finding playgroups in our semi-rural area.<br><br>
They are helping us teach Evan to sign, which is wonderful. He learned his first sign, "more," at daycare.<br><br>
Every day, they take digital photos of the children and post them on the bulletin board so you can see what your toddler did during the day. Evan is always beaming away. The teachers spend a half hour at the end of the day writing a short e-mail to parents about their toddler's day, so we always have an idea of what Evan did and how his day was.<br><br>
They are all about GD, and have even helped us with creative approaches to the issues we have (some biting, not wanting to get dressed, etc.)<br><br>
None of this is to say that I think Evan *needs* the materials, or stimulation, or social options, that daycare provides - but they do make it a fun and exciting environment for him.<br><br>
I think of his caregivers there as part of our parenting team. We - DH, Evan, and I - all benefit from their experience and wisdom.
 

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Well, we are still struggling with the transition to care for my 17 month old, but what is really helping me through this difficult time is the fact that our caregiver doesn't believe children should cry out of arms, and is happy to wear my son in a Mei Tai for hours and hours, if that's what he needs (the only place he naps at care right now).<br><br>
She does lots of outings with the children and tells me honestly and openly how my son's day was and how she handled the ups and downs. It's hard for me to hear if he cried, etc., but it helps DH and I know what to do differently to help DS transition.<br><br>
Despite not really enjoying drop-offs, DS loves being with other children and gets much more activity and structure than I provide.
 

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What a positive thread! I'm having some issues with my dc right now over field trips, but am reminded that the day to day care is very good.<br><br>
What I like:<br><br>
* My DD enjoys a busy, social environment. She is 3.5 yrs and learning so much about relationships and interacting with others. I see this as the most important stuff she's learning right now.<br>
* Being around slightly older kids has been motivating in many instances.<br>
* I like the continuity of care and that the teachers get breaks during the day. Turnover is relatively low at our centre, and an effort is made to keep at least one teacher in each room consistent if/when changes are needed. Even if DD's primary caregiver is sick, there is another familiar teacher in the room, she's usually replaced by someone DD already knows, she stays in her usual environment, mama is not stressed trying to find a replacement, etc etc.<br>
* Knowing that there is reliable, good quality care lets me be relaxed so I can focus on my work.<br>
* DC is right next door to my office, its in the downtown core, and parents are welcome to drop in at any time of day.<br>
* The staff are a resource to me, we are partners in parenting. In fact, they were the ones to suggest that DD was ready for potty training.
 

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This is a great thread for me to see right now; I'm shopping for a new dc situation... see my post from my threat, and tell me what your input is, ladies...<br><br><a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=354189&page=2" target="_blank">my options</a><br><br>
Thanks!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/heartbeat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="heartbeat">
 

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Our positives include the fact that my son loves his teachers & the other kids. I mean really loves them to peices. Well, minus the mysterious Jason - my son seems to really dislike Jason & frequently "yells" at Jason & tattles on him to me while he's at home. LOL! Jason does exist, I just don't know who he is... I think that it's great that he has a wide circle of people that he knows/loves because DH & I are not really close to our families, etc. I hope that makes sense.... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="innocent"><br><br>
He seems to be better about sharing and letting go of differences with other toddlers than other kids we've come across.<br><br>
His language skills are 6mo. to 1 year ahead of other 2 year olds (according to our ped.) & he began talking much earlier than average. I think this is because he's always been the youngest in his daycare group.<br><br>
We like the center above in-home care because they are 100% tv free (every in-home care provider had on tv - and not always even kids' tv - at the interviews.... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">. He also doesn't go anywhere during the day. This is pure paranoia on DH & my part, as we know a family that lost a child while being schlepped around town by a care provider without a proper carseat. A rare occurence with a BAD provider, I know, but we're still paranoid in that regard.<br><br>
Sure, there are negatives - but for the most part, they are loving, generous, open to suggestions & complaints, etc. We lucked out, maybe....
 

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The upside of daycare for me was that my daughter isn't as bored anymore because she really needs a lot more social interaction than I am comfortable with and she gets it at daycare. She also learned to clean up her toys and climb and swing on some of the playground equipment that I would have been to scared to teach her to climb and swing off of. I tend to underestimate how much she can do but I see her doing things at school, like clean up, and I am then make it something we do at home. Also, she is just a lot happier since she started daycare (a year ago) and I am less stressed out.
 

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Wow, this is so great to read and makes me feel better about leaving my little one with a dcp. I still wish I didn't have to leave her at such a young age -- 2 months!
 
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