Last night one of my facebook friends posted in her status about how she is weary of daycare centers.  That got me thinking.  I am guessing most moms are unaware of all the added benefits a daycare center has to offer.  My daughter is 17 months and has been in her center since she was 3 months old...  I feel blessed to have received such amazing wonderful care for the last 14 months.  Sure there have been bumps in the road along the way but nothing is perfect.  

I work because I have worked hard at becoming a career woman.  I work because I like what I do.  I like knowing the work I do is important in state initiatives and people utilize my projects on a daily basis to help them do their jobs.  I work because we cant afford to live on what my husband makes and I work to set an example for my children that you can be a successful career woman and have a family too.

Anyway this is about daycare.   I am guessing my friend has fears about daycare because of the things she has heard or her other friends have filled her head with and I hope she reads this and thinks differently about daycare afterward. 

My daycare center is amazing.  They do things with Camryn that I would never think of doing.   Last week they worked on animal flash cards and animal sounds.  Cammie can tell you how dogs, sheep, cows, ducks, birds and tigers go.  They do art.  Paining, sticker art, coloring all kinds of things.  Things that if I were at home I would never think of doing with her.   She gets to socialize with other children her age.  She loves her friends and knows all her classmates by name.   She even knows her teachers infant daughter's name.   The thing about socialization that I appreciate is that when she starts kindergarten she will be ready for success they wont be an adjustment period or awkwardness because she is used to being around kids her own age daily.   She gets the full attention of the teacher all day.  There are no errands to run or computers to login to and get on cafemom or facebook.  There is no laundry piled up to do.  Its full attention all day every day.  The ratio in her room is 1:5.  An in home daycare would have about the same ration but at daycare there is less to distract the provider.  They are mandated to change her every 2 hours even if she doesnt need it.   She has yet to have a severe diaper rash.  They write down everything that goes on in her day.  I get a full run down.   ANd someone is always watching the teachers.  Thats an added comfort measure.

But daycare centers are a breeding ground for illnesses.   Sure we have had our share of illness, but I would rather her get it now than when she starts school.  And she is builing immunities that she wouldnt get if she were home all day.  

When it all comes down to it.  I can go on and on about why I love my daycare center but the most important factor in choosing a daycare is the fact that I am 110% comfortable with leaving my amazing wonderful daughter in their care all day every day.   I know that they will love her like she is their own and she is happy there.  Every day is a smiley happy day when I pick her up.  She likes and I like it so its win win for our family.  


Anyway after hearing so many nightmare daycare stories here is a postive one.  

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Nov. 5, 2010 at 7:26 PM

I agree with you that daycare (now morphed into "preschool") has been a wonderful experience for our family.

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Nov. 5, 2010 at 7:52 PM

My son loves his daycare center too. And so do we. I agree there are many benefits.

I also wanted to add that he has amazing immune system and I credit that to fact that he is exposed to germs at daycare. They do a great job cleaning and strictly enforce the sick policy.  But he does get exposed to things by being around the other kids. Then he build immunities.  My son gets sick far less than his stay at home buddies.

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Nov. 5, 2010 at 11:44 PM

You would honestly never think to teach your child animal sounds or do crafts with her if you were at home? Then I agree, daycare is probably the best place for her. I honestly don't mean to sound hateful when I say that, I fully understand that some people are better cut out for the career world rather than taking care of children on a full-time basis. It just shocks me sometimes because I have SO many things I can't wait to do with my kids, I can never do too much with them. Crafts and animal sounds are the basics, that was easy as pie to come up with lol. As far as socialization goes, there are a lot of great ways to make sure a home schooled child or an at-home baby/toddler gets an opportunity to socialize. Although I am a "stay at home mom", we do not spend most of our time at home. My kids have tons of friends and I am not at all worried about whether they will be socialized or not. It's great that you have found a good daycare for your daughter, but I don't see these things as "benefits" because we can do all that and maybe even more at home. Feeling comfortable with your child's daily care person is very important though, whether it is you or somebody else.

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Nov. 6, 2010 at 12:36 AM

I think she meant she didn't realize that a child as young as hers would be "able" to paint and things of that nature.  I felt the same way when I got to the center to pick up my 9 month old daughter and she had painted.  It is not something I would have done with a 9 month old.

And, yes, we working moms realize that not all of a SAHM's child's day is spent at home.  But it is certainly not spent with children their own age for it's entirety.  At 4 my son knows how to interact with his peers not only when they are at their best, but also when they are at their worst (tired, hungry, etc).

However, I think you lost the purpose of this journal.  As a SAHM you don't have to choose between in home care and a center.  As a working mom, I like hearing what types of daycare are out there as well as their pros and cons.  When choosing to put my children in a center after they had spent some time with my mom, the biggest selling point was that they would be with more kids their own age on an almost daily basis.  Finding out the teachers work with them on things that I wouldn't think of on my own is an added benefit, and I like knowing that they hopefully wont miss as much school due to illness because they will have already been exposed to a lot of things.

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Nov. 6, 2010 at 1:34 AM

You are right that my children don't spend their entire day with children their own age, and I think that is a great thing. I don't think spending all day with children their own age is a good for them at all, because then they only learn to socialize with children exactly their age. The older children don't know how to talk to younger ones and vice versa. Of course this isn't always the case, but I've seen it happen more often in children that spend all day in age-grouped classrooms. My 3.5 year old has friends as old as 8, and the 8 year old loves including him and the younger kids in their games. Even my 21 month old daughter loves playing with the bigger kids, and they all love "helping" with the babies. They not only get more than adequate socialization, but they get it with a wide variety of people from infants to adults. My children have also seen these kids at their best and their worst, we as stay at home moms do not keep them home just because they are having a bad day. I'm not at all surprised that somebody would love their daycare center, just a little surprised when people think daycares are the only way their child will get to participate in activities/socialize/etc. I am willing to bet that if most working mothers had no choice but to be at home, they would make sure their children still had these opportunities. It may not be as easy as picking out a daycare and sending them in everyday, but it isn't difficult either. Perhaps you hadn't thought to do some of those things with your kids simply because you never had to. If you still think you wouldn't, then I agree that daycare/school/etc is the best place for them, but it isn't the only place they can do these things.

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Nov. 6, 2010 at 9:43 AM

Busymama, the OP wrote her entire journal on daycare without ever putting down SAHMs or saying anything negative about kids who stay at home. The OP never said day cares were the only way for kids to learn to socialize. She is confident enough in her decision to not have to criticise others to justify her choice.  It would be nice if you could extend the same respect.

I suppose if you think a daycare provider wouldn't think of any activities or skills for your child that hadn't occurred to you that makes you feel pretty good about your parenting. I am more than willing to admit I don't know it all. My son did tons of things at daycare that I wouldn't have tried with him yet.

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Nov. 6, 2010 at 12:07 PM Where did I critisize anyone? Disagreeing does not equate critisism. No, she did not specifically say "stay at home parents" but she talks about why she is a working mom in the first place and how if she were not then her daughter would not recieve the "added benefits" of daycare because she would not think to do things with her. I am disagreeing with that. Those things are not benefits because a child can recieve them whether they go to daycare or not. I have not once said anything about daycares being "bad" or putting anyone down for using them, only shared why I don't find them to be beneficial. That is what cafemom is for, sharing information! I am sure the OP is welcoming comments from everybody whether they agree or not, since she posted a public journal.

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Nov. 9, 2010 at 11:06 AM

Was just sharing a positve daycare experience for other mothers to know that daycares arent bad.   TO each her own.  I would never slam a SAHM and I am sure if I were one I would think of creative things to do with my daughter but since I am not we stick to the zoo, park, science center and things like that on our weekends.....

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