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What to Look for in Choosing a Home Child Care Center E-mail

A home child care center is a much different form of child care.  In this situation, your child is left in someone else’s home while you are at work.  There may be other children in the home child care; or your child may be the only one.  There are pros and con’s to home child care centers.  The pros will out weigh the cons if you know what to look for when choosing your provider.

Unlike other child care providers, the home child care center is in a private home.  This can be a positive thing because your child will not feel like they are in an institution.  Your child will be around home furnishings and will eat home cooked meals.  There may be pets in the home for your child to play with and help care for.

The biggest con in a home day care center is that usually there is only one teacher.  This makes it hard for the parent to know if the teacher is mistreating the children. When choosing a home day care provider you should first check with your local government agency which deals with licensing and/or monitoring home day care centers.  Ask if  the providers license is up to date and whether or not there have been any complaints against the provider.  Parents should avoid providers whose licenses have expired, or whom have never been licensed.  Parents should find out if the provider has ever been arrested for any criminal activities.

Ask your home child care center provider for references.   References are other parents whose children attend the provider’s home care center.  Do not be shy about contacting the references.  You should ask what they like about the home child care center, what they dislike about it, and whether or not their child has ever been hit or yelled at by the provider.

Make an appointment with the provider at a time when they will be free to answer questions. You should ask the following: how do they punish the children?  What moral values does the provider live by?  What types of food will they prepare for your child’s meals?  What are the operating hours? How much is the cost? What happens if the provider becomes ill? (Is there someone who will be substituting for the provider on sick days?)

Parents should choose a home child care center that actively engages the children in learning activities such as: craft projects,  learning basic words, learning colors, learning to count to ten, etc.

Home child care centers can be excellent choices for many reasons. Home child care centers are usually less expensive than public providers.   These types of providers are usually more nurturing and have smaller groups of children (and thus able to provide more attention to each individual child). 


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