You’ve finally decided that you want to start working again, after having your baby and the big question looms like a weight over your head - who will I leave my baby with? Nanny? Parents? In-laws? You start feeling guilty just thinking about it! At this stage, you’re unsure of a lot of things except, that you want the absolute best for your baby. Enrolling your child in a high quality daycare facility is the best step in that direction. Rather than spending time at home with a maid, your baby will be able to develop a range of skills that will contribute to their intellectual and social development.
But how do you choose a good daycare? Below is a checklist for you to refer to, when making your decision:
1. Who will your baby spend time with?
One of the foremost things to consider while choosing a daycare is the quality of the staff. A specialised, trained staff is one considerable advantage that daycare centres have over nannies and home care providers. Every child requires a safe and secure environment to grow and having warm, smart and trustworthy people around your baby provides a wonderful environment for her to flourish in.
2. A good review goes a long way
A good daycare is always well known in parenting circles. It should have a welcoming, friendly atmosphere and be known for its nurturing environment. Ask the centre for references and testimonials. Talk to other parents about their impressions of the centre.
3. Safety 101
It goes without saying, your baby’s safety is your top priority, as it is for a daycare centre. Children at this age are very impressionable and their security should be of utmost concern. Does the daycare have provisions for CCTV access to parents? Is the centre compliant with relevant safety standards? The outdoor play area should be level and uniform and the staff should be well versed in basic first aid. The centre should be divided into specific zones for specific activities, all of which ought be under constant adult supervision. Children should never be handed over to unverified people, either at the centre or at bus stops.
4. Hygiene by example
A good day care centre will always have clear, visible sanitation rules and will make it a point that the staff and children follow it. Toys and educational resources should be non toxic, compliant with all health standards and be sanitised regularly. Washing cloths, pacifiers and teething rings cannot be shared. The center should have excellent procedures for handling and storing breast milk. As children are prone to sickness and infections, the daycare should have strict policies against contagious diseases. Although it may seem inconvenient at times, a centre that strictly follows these policies is one that you can rely on!
5. Healthy, fresh food
It’s important that your baby is fed nutritious, high quality, freshly cooked food, and this can be challenging for working mums! Make sure that the daycare you pick has a well thought out menu . Ideally, this should be taken care of by an in-house nutritionist. You must be updated on your child’s eating habits and patterns. The staff must be made aware of any food allergies that your child might have. Food should be prepared fresh everyday and the kitchen area should be separate from the play area and diaper changing stations.
6. Personalised Care
Each child is different, and a centre that acknowledges this is one that you should consider seriously. Adult to child ratios for carers and children should not exceed 1:3. This ensures that your child enjoys personalised care. Age groups should be separated. Infants should not be playing with toddlers and older children. This is because toddlers don’t always know how to play with infants and may end up hurting them. Look for a variety of co-curricular activities that your child can partake in, so that all their faculties are being exercised well.
7. Raising your little genius
As your child will be spending a considerable part of the day at the daycare, it is very important that he or she is intellectually engaged. Early education plays a crucial role in the development of your child. Look for a well thought out, well implemented, rounded curriculum that offers both physical and mental stimulation. Ideally, the curriculum should be created and approved by child psychology experts.
To help you with all this, we’re always on the lookout for standout daycares and schools.
We’ve found that, mothers and children across 5 cities and 54 centres in India are having an amazing, guilt free learning experience at KLAY.
A KLAY centre checks off all the points in the above list. Going beyond the list, KLAY has a strong foundation of values that has helped them expand without compromising on high quality care and education. They pay attention to every detail, from staff quality, a child’s family values to curriculum and care. They even offer opportunities for parents to learn and grow with their children. We urge you to step into your nearest centre and experience the expertise that KLAY delivers for yourself!