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Thread: Opinions on Home Day Care Centres

  1. #1

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    Arrow Opinions on Home Day Care Centres

    Hi everyone.

    I am probably going to enrol my 1 year old son to begin 2 days a week with a day care mum who I contacted through an agency.

    I am just wondering if anyone could share their opinions from their experiences or any stories about a similar situation. I dont really know anyone who I can talk to who has had their children in this situation.

    The reasons I have chosen to go this path:
    • smaller groups - their are only 4 kids and they are similar ages
    • they get to go out and about - she takes them to storytelling at the library etc
    • its a nice safely set up house on an acre with heaps of room and things to do
    • it gives me flexibility for weekend or evening care


    Me and my siblings were in home day care as kids, and i have fond memories of it, and the day care mum became a close friend to the family. This also gives me a favorable impression.

    I would love to hear of other people's experiences with home day care!

    I will also report back about how it is going as we follow the process.


  2. #2
    Jodie259 Guest

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    For nearly a year I had my DS in an "occassional care" centre. It was restricted to 3 hour or 5 hour sessions - and a maximum of 15 hours a week. He loves it there, as there are up to 15 kids around his age, and they have the outside section to play on swings and in the sandpits etc.
    But they close over school holiday periods... and last holidays we were moving house & renovating, and I'm pregnant, and I was working at my business as one of the staff was on holidays. So I needed to find alternative care for him.

    I contacted the council and arranged meetings with two "family day care" women. The first one was miles away - and she had 7 kids in her care. Which seemed a bit much for me. But the other lady was lovely. She has no more then 4 kids, and she was such a lovely quietly spoken lady. My DS made himself at home as soon as we arrived. The other bonus was that she was around the corner from my dads house, so my step-mum picked him up on her way home. He was with that lady for 3 weeks full time. He loved it all the time.

    Now I have him two days a week at the Family day care. And two days a week at the occassional care centre. I see benefits in both. I like the larger group of kids where he really gets confidence and improves his social skills. And I like the smaller group where he gets lots of one-on-one attention. The FDC go for walks, and visit another FDC house that is nearby.

    The FDC lady seems to really adore my son. She has been offered other kids to take care of... but said she would prefer to have my DS. He is the youngest one... but she says he is the same level as the 2-3yo's that she takes care of.

    I'm really happy with the FDC. If I had to choose between the two centres - I would go with FDC. Although I'm lucky that I can have him at both - for the variety.

  3. #3

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    my MIL is a family day care mum, she loves it. She used to be an emergency foster care mum but when she moved up north, she decided she needed a bit of a break, so went into FDC. She was saying that the checks they do are really stringent, they checked over ALL her toys and made her replace a few (that had parts that *could* break), they also went over her house with a fine tooth comb, checked out her vehicle, did criminal checks etc - she said that the checking they did for FDC was MORE than they did for fostering.

    I'd say give it a go, I was in FDC after my dad died, predominantly after school care (with a few families) and on school holidays and I loved it, it was like having brothers & sisters close to my own age (my brother is 25 years older than me and until his first was born when I was 8 I didn't really have any "siblings"). I think I learnt more about sharing etc from day care than I ever did in school/kindy/occasional care.

    This will be the path that we'll go down when we have kids (even if I become a SAHM) - we can't convince my MIL to move back to Brisbane, so I'll have to find somebody good and local - not that I'd expect her to raise my kids for me (unlike my DH's sister-in-law who goes away for "breaks" while her husband is working in the mines & just leaves their child with my MIL - my MIL is their FDC on a day-to-day basis anyway).

  4. #4

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    I have been a Family day care mum for 5 years, and i love it!!! All the kids in my care are treated like my own, and I cry as they leave and go off to school. I still have contact with all my families!!!

  5. #5

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    Wow thanks guys thats some great feedback!!

    I think I would feel an element of apprehension putting him anywhere, but I did get a really good feel about this place so I am going to put him in on Tues and stay for a while to see how he goes!!

    Ringing the agency today so it will be interesting to see what the process is to get going!

  6. #6

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    I was in FDC before and after school and on school holidays from age 5-11. I absolutely LOVED it, and would love Blake to go to my friend's mother who is a FDC carer. I'm looking at going back to work after Christmas, so hopefully she has an opening, I just don't know if I could put him in a centre.

  7. #7

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    FDC is great! I was a carer myself for a while before i went back to full time work. definately recommend it, the kids all get along so well.

  8. #8

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    Love it love it love it!

    My kids are both in FDC with a wonderful lady who we've developed a fantastic bond with. My kids love her and she treats them as her own. She is bi-lingual and teaches them a second language, and does fairly structured activities with them during the day as well as free play. I love that she only has 4 children and two of them are mine

    My DD will be starting at a centre next year as she's reached an age where we feel she's ready to start interacting with larger groups of children that are her own age (she is the oldest at FDC). We will be absolutely devasted to take her out, and my only fear is that she will be quite upset and miss the carer initially because she really loves her.

    I think FDC is wonderful, especially for babies and toddlers.

  9. #9

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    Hi Twippa,
    I did FDC before I moved to Tamworth, I looked after mostly under school aged children. The most important things I found were communication between the carer and parents and compatibility. See how your DS goes. Have you left him with other people before? does he suffer from separation anxiety?

  10. #10

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    Hey Rosehannah, no he hasn't really stayed with other people at all, but he's very self confident, so I felt he would be okay.

    Today was his first day there, I just have a good gut feeling about the place, and he was happy when I left and happy when I got there to pick him up, and best of all, the 2 other boys there are within 6months of his age group so they are little matey's already!!!

    It's so scary to take a chance and make the leap to put kids in care, but I feel a good first day is a great start!!!

    I'll post back on how he goes once he;s been there for a while!

    Thanks all so much for your replies, it really helped put my mind at ease!

  11. #11

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    I'm pleased that every thing is going well so far. How excellent that there are other boys around his age. I hope you have a really positive experience, as it is a scary thing having to trust people with our precious little ones.

  12. #12

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    My DS goes to FDC with a lady I have known for 15 yrs (i taught 2 of her kids) He loves his carer and the other kids and he gets so much attention and love. They do regular spot checks and he brings home a little "report" each time saying what he as doing when the checker called in and even if the TV was on or not! I love it for little kids as there is continuity of care and they are not one of a large group all the same age.

  13. #13

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    I am a carer with Family Day Care and have been since 1995. I am still in contact with a lot of my original families, one set of parents is my second sons, godparents, and i'm now on second generation care - the nephew of one child from about 12 years ago. I started FDC because I was a sook - we needed the 2nd income, but didn't want to leave my son, i did try to go to work when he was ten months old, but lasted 3 weeks. My husband was retrenched and we moved in to in-laws house, after about 18mths, we moved into a rental and i began day care, i haven't looked back. I think the smaller groups are better for the kids, although i have nothing against LDC or pre-schools, and some 4-5 year olds, need the extra stimulation of more children. We regularly attend our scheme playgroup and play days with other carers. We have excursions to play cafes, parks and special events (such as those offered in pre-schools, - petting zoos, dentists, etc) so the children don't miss out on experiences.

  14. #14

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    I am in the interviewing stages of finding a job but have a place 30 seconds from home when I need it She has only one other child in part time care who is 3, and a 3 year old and 7 year old of her own. Blake will be there approx 8-10 hours a day and I know I can trust her with my precious!

  15. #15

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    i am an actual home day care carer i care for 4 children under the age of the three and i beleive the younger children benefit more from home day care then big day care centres because it is in a home environment and they only with a small number of children and only one person instructing them what they need to do of having having 5 or more different people insturcting them what to do and getting confused when some people have different ways of teaching the children. in home day care they arave re still doing similar activities to child care centre and still have routines that they follow everyday. in my home day care we still do arts and craft, read stories play outside and some home day cares have playgroups that we go to where we get to interact with other children and carers as well. we also go to the libaray and storie times and i look after babies and i feel they love that one on one intereaction as well like they get when they are at home. from the carer side i love the job i do you get there more one on one intereaction and build strong relationships with the children and the parents. i hope that can help in some way please dont hesiate to ask anymore questions.

  16. #16

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    sorry for all the typo's

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