Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Child Care: Finding the Right Fit for Your Baby – Part 2

Today, in part 2 of our series on child care (to read part 1 click here), we’ll share some important questions to ask when researching child care programs.  Choosing a child care program is an important decision that will shape your child’s development. We’ve talked in the past about positive caregiver-infant interactions, and this is not only important for parents, but for other caregivers taking care of your baby on a regular basis. In another past post we shared tips for choosing a childcare provider (LINK), and now we’ll share some more specific questions to ask. The best way to answer many of the questions below is by observing the child care setting itself. Here are a few things to consider.

  • Are you welcome to drop in at any time?
  • Do caregivers talk to the infants? Do they sing and read to them?
  • Are caregivers flexible enough to help with adapting your baby's feeding and sleeping schedule to their own, or to find a compromise? Can you find out these schedules before your baby starts child care so that you can begin transitioning your baby?
  • Are caregivers patient with babies’ needs?
  • Are the babies’ needs met in a timely manner?
  • Do the caregiver’s feeding style and beliefs match your own?
  • Is the caregiver flexible enough to let you provide input on your baby's naptime routine?
  • Does the caregiver seem to enjoy working with children?
  • Would you feel good about leaving your child there?
  • What training do caregivers have in infant development?
  • Do caregivers watch for and feed babies based on hunger and fullness cues or on a tight schedule?
  • Are babies fed by a caregiver or left to drink a bottle alone?
  • Does the caregiver make eye contact with the babies? Do they hug and cuddle them?
  • What does the caregiver do when a baby cries?
We hope you’ve found these questions useful! Next time we’ll explore more about the transition from home to child care.
For other questions to ask when choosing child care that we gathered in a past post, click here.


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