Childcare is a big step for both you and your child, and it’s a decision that will affect your entire family’s lifestyle once you commit to it.
Childcare can do wonders for your child’s development, not to mention the many benefits to you as a parent. On the other hand, it can put unnecessary stress on your family if it’s not right for your needs or if you pick the wrong childcare provider.
Every child is different, so there’s no right answer for every family. With that said, there are several important factors you can consider to help you make the right decision.
Your child’s age. Although there’s no perfect age to start childcare (it depends on your child and his/her needs), it’s crucial to only let your child enter childcare once they’re ready and capable of handling such a big change. Keep in mind that there are various levels of childcare, with programs designed for different ages of children, so you have different options for your child.
Your child’s needs. Does your child need more one-on-one time with you as they continue to grow and explore the world? Or are they already comfortable being detached from you and socialising with other people? Consider how far your child has developed and what they need to transition to their next phase in the smoothest way possible.
Type of childcare. It’s important to understand that there are different types of childcare. Some children will benefit from a more focused childcare program that features one-on-one sessions and more private care. Others will benefit from exposure to other kids and a more structured learning program with other children. When choosing a childcare program, make sure it matches what your child needs at this stage of their development.
Amount of childcare required. Do you need full-day childcare to watch over your child and care for them while you work the rest of the day? Or perhaps half-day sessions or a few hours of childcare are all you need? Knowing the length and amount of childcare that fits your lifestyle will help you determine what’s right for your child and your family.
Your job situation. Are you working full-time? Part-time? Or are your just about to get back into the workforce? Knowing your job situation – including any travel demands and work schedules – will help you make the right choice. Make sure that your job situation will align with your centre’s service hours to create the best situation.
Centre location. Do you live far away from your prospective childcare centre? And is it far from your workplace? Consider the amount of time it will take to bring your child to the centre and pick them up, so you can choose the right centre for you. McDowall Village Childcare, for example, is centrally located in Brisbane’s northern suburbs, making it ideal for families living in Aspley, Everton Hills, Everton Park, Stafford and Stafford Heights. This central location provides parents and families with plenty of flexibility.
Your finances. Do you have the financial resources to cover your child’s childcare on top of all your other family expenses? Remember to consider not just the cost of childcare every month but also all other related costs such as petrol or commuting expenses.
Like any other personal matter, deciding whether childcare is right for your child and your family ultimately depends on you. You should always consider what’s best for you and your child and weigh each option’s pros and cons. Childcare is an investment in your child – and like any investment, there will be costs and benefits you’ll need to consider thoroughly.
If you need help deciding whether childcare is right for your family, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. We can shed more light on what childcare can do for your child and how well it can fit into your family’s lifestyle.