Going to a child care centre can be a very exhilarating but intimidating experience for your children. During any watershed moments in their life, you should be trying to support but not overpower them as they make their own way in life and often a child care centre is the first step in this direction. Of course, any parent is going to want to help their child out in any way they can but it is important that this is supportive rather than instructive. Here are a few ways you can ensure your child has the best time at a child care centre possible.
Pick Them Up Personally
After a long (or sometimes short) time at daycare the number one thing your child wants to see is a familiar face. Sometimes you might be too busy and that is understandable but as often as you can you should make it a habit to pick your children up. When doing this it is important to be on time so that the safety net is there in case they had a bad day or are at their tipping point. This positions you as the trusted shoulder to cry on or the best friend to share exciting news with. Either way, it is just important to be there for your child at the end of each day.
Ask Them About Their Day But Don't Force Them To Share
Your child is beginning to learn how to control their emotions at this stage and it is important that they feel like they have some autonomy over this aspect of their life. Often all you will have to do to get information out of them is prod them in the right direction ('how was your day honey?') and they will go on excitedly for hours. But it is important to remember that when they don't share this is okay too. They are allowed to feel sad or tired or whatever emotion they are feeling as long as it doesn't last too long and they show signs of improvement. If your child is constantly quiet and doesn't show any signs of engagement that is when you should take them to an expert. If it only happens occasionally that is perfectly normal and a big part of growing up.
Set Aside Times For 'Homework'
Many daycare centres will give your child small tasks, activities or suggestions to stimulate them at home. This is to emulate the impending homework they will get at school but also a good way to keep them thinking about important developmental areas like reading, writing, mathematics and social skills. Don't treat this flippantly; give it the attention it deserves. This way you can help establish boundaries early and position your child to succeed in school and any further education. These habits should start young and if they do they can lead to a lifetime of good discipline.
For more information, contact a child care centre.