I work, you know, running this online store - it's called CleverStuff, you might have heard of it? I know it looks like it just happens (it totes doesn't - everything you see, we made happen). And I have a young son. Unfortunately, I'm not in a position to have my son here at work with me (noone else would EVER get any toys, because he would claim them all as his own). So that's how it happened. My son became a 'Day Care Kid' - you know the type, the snotty nosed kids who are obviously neglected / unloved because their parents are working to make a living to provide for them? Yep, when you put it like that sounds a bit crazy to think that right, but there are STILL myths that surround daycare. We just wanted to take a few minutes to blow some of them out of the water, because really, it needs to happen.
1. A child needs more attention than they will get in a room with 20 other kids. Yes. Kids need attention. Do they need 1 on 1 attention all day, every day? No. Kids flourish when left to their own devices (I'm not talking about leaving them with sharp knives or fire and seeing what happens) but supervised free play is such a HUGE part of early education now because it is WHAT KIDS NEED!
2. A child needs his mumma - not a stranger. Sorry, but where am I going? To Mars? No I'm going to work, to help him learn about work ethic, responsibility and respect for what we have. And further to that, what about single dads? One parent families? Gay dads? A kid needs ROLE MODELS and if you're at the right centre that's exactly what they will get. It takes a village after all. Also, I don't know about where you're from, but where I'm from my child's educators are not strangers - I know who they are, they know who we are, they also love my son. I am not asking a random person in Woolworths to teach him the alphabet.
3. They will feel unloved. You obviously haven't met many educators. Educators cry when your baby is hurt, they exclaim with pride when after 7 pairs of underwear she finally manages a few drops actually IN the toilet, they welcome them with open arms each morning and they LOVE your child too. Just because it's not a 'parent love' doesn't mean it's not special all the same.
4. It's terrible to let them sit there and cry. When does this happen?! Any childcare worker I know feels the tug of tears before I would. Here's an idea. YouTube baby crying, leave it playing while you're at work. See how quickly you'd want to comfort that kid - well I bet my bottom dollar your kids teacher would be there MUCH sooner.
5. There is no structure. Yeah, you're right. Snack at 9am. Sunscreen on at 9.15am. Outside from 9am - 11am. Nappy change 9.30am. Inside for free play 11am. Library time 11.30am. Nappy change 12pm. Lunch time 12.15pm. Rest / Quiet Time 12.30pm...... you're right. No structure at all. They run around like wild animals....
6. It's so expensive. That one is true and everyone needs to weigh it up for themselves - .but this isn't But can you put a price on quality education, social and emotional growth for your child? Plus all the benefits of working for the parent/s, not only financially, but emotionally, mentally and socially? Not to mention the super you're earning, the resume you're building and the life you are making for yourself. It is expensive, but staying home with your child full time can cost a lot too.
7. Daycare is just bad. You're right. Sending my son to a place that loves, supports and encourages him, gets him to try new things (things I wouldn't have ever thought of / had the energy to do), feeds him, cuddles him when he feels sad is terrible. A place where he can play with kids his own age, his own skill level and play with age appropriate, educational toys. A place where he feels safe, enjoys going to and has FUN. I know. But don't worry, I'm at working, saving money to help pay for counselling for him to deal with it all. ;)
What do you wish people would understand about DayCareKids?