Our goal is to provide information, ideas and support for working women who are also full-time mothers.

Friday, July 28, 2006

In-Home Daycare, pros and cons

Well I grew up in a daycare home (my mom still runs a daycare out of her home) and I bring my children to an in-home daycare. I love it overall, but it definitely has its pros and cons. My daycare is very small. There are three families, six kids total. They range in age from 4 months to 5 years. My provider raised four kids of her own and has been in the daycare business for 15 years. She loves my kids and that makes me feel good.

What I love
  • My kids have the same teacher from day one. There is no trauma of moving up from the infant room to the toddler room with new friends and a new teacher.
  • It's a much more intimate setting than some of the larger centers.
  • It's like a 2nd home for them--literally. Their daycare provider is really like a third grandma.
  • My two kids are there together--they're not separated because of age differences.
  • Their daycare friends are a wide variety of ages.
  • More kids often equals exposure to more illnesses (although I don't always buy that).

What I don't love

  • There's no backup plan. If my daycare provider is sick or on vacation, I'm stuck. Every once in awhile my husband can take off, but it's usually me.
  • There is often less structure, although this varies widely. My mom, for example, has a full preschool program and the day is very structured.
  • I think there's less opportunities for some of the experiences they'd get at a larger center--such as cool field trip, big art projects, etc. Again, this varies.

I think everybody has to decide what sort of setting is right for them. No one thing will be right for every family. No matter what, interview, interview, interview!


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