Is your child’s preschool providing everything your child needs for a healthy start in their life? According to 2000 Days Daycare, there are key signs to look for to know that your child is getting the most out of their childcare experience. These signs are explored below.
1. Their childcare center provides a structured and well-planned day.
Young children feel most secure when they maintain a predictable daily schedule. If their childcare center maintains a clearly planned day, such as one with a posted lesson plan, they probably feel safer in their learning environment. Of course, these activities should be applicable to their age group and development.
2. The childcare center accepts parent feedback and adjusts to your child’s individual needs.
If your child has unique needs, such as for their diet or medication, does your childcare center adjust to these requirements? Children get more from a preschool that recognizes their individuality. While structure and group standards are important, there should be room for accepting parental feedback and managing reasonable needs by adjusting programs for the child’s best interest.
3. There is not a high turnover in the teaching staff.
Your child must adjust to each new teacher they encounter, regardless of their age or developmental stage. Frequent staff changes feel chaotic and can disrupt your child’s sense of security and learning. In a childcare center where your child has staff consistency, they get more from day-to-day learning and interactions.
4. Your child’s learning program changes to meet their developmental needs.
The first 2000 days of your child’s life is a period of constant development and change. They need childcare programs suited to these changes. Your child gets the most from a preschool that recognizes their learning needs by providing new challenges and activities for each developmental stage.
5. Teachers have the freedom to get creative within reasonable lesson plans.
A fully engaged and empowered teacher is your child’s best partner for learning in the important first 2000 days. If your child’s preschool allows teacher input and creativity within lesson planning, this only makes learning more fun and interesting.
6. You notice good engagement between children and their teachers.
When you go into your childcare center, you should not see children just wandering about. You should also not see any looking left out or disengaged. Teachers should be actively involved in classroom learning. They should be down at the child’s level when warranted, playing on the floor with them or otherwise engaging eye-to-eye. This engagement helps your child develop trust with their teachers while also helping them learn.
Other Signs of a Quality Daycare Environment for Your Child
To ensure your child gets the most out of their childcare center, look for the center to offer the following features and amenities:
- Small group sizes and low child-staff ratios
- Caring teachers and care providers who love children
- Colourful atmosphere that encourages creativity
- Classwork and artwork frequently sent home with your child
When you see all of the above signs in your child’s daycare centre, yet remain unsure of your child’s benefit from that environment, you can rely on other signs. Those signs are simply your child’s growing confidence, enjoyment of childcare and development of friendships. You should also notice an expanding vocabulary and improving communication. They should show pride in their artwork and other papers they bring home at the end of the day. If you do not see your child growing in these ways, look more closely at the quality of your childcare center.
Remember, your child only has 2000 days before starting grammar school. This fleeting time is key to their long term development. Believe it or not, the quality of their childcare affects your little one’s future school performance, focus, self-confidence, socialization and career fulfillment throughout their lifetime.