There are parents who work at home or mothers who opt to be full time moms to their children while there are also a lot others who cannot afford to let go of their jobs, their bread and butter in life. Thus, they instead enroll their kids in daycare facilities.
Fortunately for those who reside in or around Cambridge, Massachusetts, finding a reputable Cambridge daycare facility is not at all challenging with a number of daycare facilities available in the area. Many of them are pricier than the other and in terms of available services, they also vary from one another. So to make sure you choose the best Cambridge daycare facility for your loved one, first you have to be familiar at the least of the basics of daycare centers. The information below will help you.
What is a Cambridge Daycare Facility and what services does it offer?
As the name suggests, a Cambridge daycare facility is a childcare providing facility that enables working parents to drop off their kids during the day for supervision, learning, and most importantly, care. However, a daycare comes in a number of forms or setups but among them, below are the two most common types of daycare facilities:
Home Day Care. A home day care facility, or also known as family day care, is a kind of childcare program where the childcare is provided at the comfort of the kid’s home. The highly trained and certified caregivers who handle the job are all home-based. Oftentimes, the best caregivers are the ones being sent out by day care providers for home day care as these workers already bear the expertise that is needed to carry out the job right.
Group Day Care. A group daycare facility, on the other hand, is usually operated under a license the state where it is in issues and is similarly operated to a school where the kids enrolled are still in the same age range but whose respective ages often vary from one another. There are group daycare centers in Cambridge which are manned by the employers themselves. Staff and caregiver professionals in group Cambridge daycare centers are licensed, highly trained, and experts at attending to the needs of the kids in terms of meal, supervision, nap times, and learning and social activities.
Regardless of what type of daycare it is, it pretty much offers the same kind of services:
- Children’s Care. The main purpose of daycare is to provide care to the kids while their guardians are away. This already includes providing their basic needs especially those who belong in infant to toddler age range. Although the type of care daycare centers provide to the kids vary depending on their age, common services offered to toddlers and infants include changing diapers, feeding them, and administering their playtime. Meanwhile, for kids over toddler age, daycare staff would provide story reading activities, early education and learning programs, as well as meeting the kids’ basic needs, e.g. attention, and playing with them while their parents are away.
- Trained Supervision. Regardless of the child’s age, it is vital that he be left and trusted in the hands of professionals who have the right knowledge, skills, and experience in child handling and caregiving no matter the situation and that is precisely what a Cambridge daycare facility is all about. It makes sure its staff has gone through the needed training for child handling and daycare certifications including a CPR certification which is highly important in case of emergencies.
- Social Skill Development and Promotion. One of the great things a daycare facility instills to the kids is the importance and/or the development of their social skills, i.e. how well they interact with other people. This is why common daycare programs definitely include playing fun and natural games which aids in their learning and growth.
- Toys and Games. Although natural games are highly encouraged, most daycare facilities also make use of learning toys, mind games, and playing options no matter the child’s age. However, the types of toys that are offered in each daycare center may vary from one another. For instance, there are some daycare facilities which have no playground.
The Real Deal of Enrolling Your Kid in a Cambridge Daycare Facility
Cambridge daycare facilities are there for a significant purpose and an important role to play. Their programs are highly likely effective as that is how their business works. However, like in other things, enrolling our kids in a daycare facility is a decision that has its own upsides and downsides too.
Care. What kids will receive in a daycare facility is not just an average care but a quality care in the hands of licensed professionals. Their programs also focus on providing care to children ranging under infant to toddler age range. At times, they even accommodate beyond. If a daycare facility is good, providing top quality care and services is already a guarantee.
Education and Learning. Daycare programs include exposure in an educational environment that stimulates the growth and development of the kids.
Socialization. In daycare centers, activities that promote social interaction are part of the daily program with an aim of enhancing the kids’ sense of self on a natural environment. Toddlers who are enrolled in daycare facilities are also taught basic and natural problem solving approaches, e.g. knowing when it is to listen to authority.
Special Care. For family daycare setups, kids are likely to receive more personalized, special attention. And since the care is being given at home, exposure to germs is reduced which is beneficial to the kid’s health. Meanwhile, for daycare centers, staff who nurse and attend the kids are highly trained and licensed. Besides, there is also proper shifting to ensure that the quality of care being given to kids is consistently great and is not compromised.
Reliability. Unlike regular businesses that are open for only eight hours a day, most daycare centers like Cambridge daycare centers are open for twelve hours a day to leave enough time to wait for parents’ off at work.
Cost. Although there are day care facilities that are subsidized by some companies or by the state, parents still need to shell out quite a huge amount of money in the long run as compared to hiring a nanny. Also, day care facilities normally cater to a lot of children on a daily basis, hence viruses and germs can go hopping to kids, thereby amplifying their exposure to illnesses. As we all know, medication is costly.
Availability. Although most day care facilities are open 12 hours a day, most of them are closed on Sundays and holidays. That means two days of wishing you opted to hire a nanny.
Unstable Staff-to-Child Ratio. Most laws mandate that in day care centers, a staff member must accommodate only five toddlers or six infants, or eight kids beyond toddler. However, no one truly knows if a daycare follows such a standard or not but them. This is why you should do a lot of research before even choosing the right daycare facility for your kid.
Snacks and meals served may be unhealthy. Unless you do strictly monitor the facility, the likelihood that the food your kid is served with is not really nutritious as advertised is there.
There may be TVs and TV usage may be too much. One of the reasons why parents buy the idea of enrolling their kids in a daycare facility and entrusting the kid to the center’s staff is because daycare programs are meant to promote natural learning sans the usage of all gadgets and electronic appliances. Now, if the daycare center you have been eyeing on has a TV set, you might want to think over.
Lack of Communication/Updates. We enroll our kids in a daycare facility hoping progress awaits in terms of their overall wellbeing. However, choosing the wrong daycare may deprive us of that and we might be left without a clue about how our child is progressing.
Choosing a Cambridge Daycare
If the daycare facility provides the best care and also promotes emotional and physical maturity, intelligence, and well roundedness on the kids, then it is a good daycare facility. These values will be something the kids will carry as they grow and face challenges in life in the future.
How can we spot the right one?
Experts suggest that the researching and selection process have to be done at least two months before you wish to admit your kid in the facility. This time allowance will be spent for the following purposes:
- Exploration and Investigation. After gathering your Cambridge daycare options, next thing you should do is investigate every option like your kid’s safety and wellbeing depends on it. You can do that by researching for all the information available including feedbacks and reviews posted on the daycare facility’s website and social media accounts.
- Make sure that the daycare service provider has plan B, e.g. sufficient backup staff in case of emergency absences of the main caregivers.
- Facility Inspection. Based on your narrowed down option list, it would be wise to visit each facility personally and see if they pass your standards or not. Surprise visits are the key.