There are many different types of child care in Australia. From those that are based around religious guidelines to large, multicultural groups found in preschools and child care centres. Finding the type of child care that is best for your precious children can be a difficult task, and many parents find it hard to let go at all. However, allowing your kid to socialise early and form those bonds with other people is an integral part of their development so, eventually, you will need to choose somewhere. Luckily, there is a clear best option, and that is, of course, family day care.
What Is Family Day Care?
Family day care is unlike any other type of childcare for a wide variety of reasons. Not only is family day care based out of the educators home, but the group size is far smaller, the one-on-one time with adults is much higher and the hours are more flexible. In many ways, it is more like asking a relative or best friend to look after your child for a few hours, rather than a large facility. However, that does not mean that family day care does not take education or learning seriously — they do — they just take a more holistic and caring approach to it, which many parents find works wonders.
How Many Children Do They Look After At Once?
Most child care centres may have ten, fifteen, even twenty school-aged children per educator. At a family day care, you can have no more than seven, and that number shrinks down to four if the children are below school age. That means not only does your child get to feel safe in a more homely environment, but they get to form emotional bonds with their educators far easier. The last thing you want is for your child to feel lost in the system, which can unfortunately sometimes be the case in larger groups. By keeping this group smaller when they are younger, you are giving them the best chance at a successful education later.
Are There Any Other Benefits?
While the student to educator ratio is no doubt impressive, there are other benefits to a family day care centre. Most family day care practitioners are able to keep your child overnight, which means that if you have an emergency. and can't get home, they can take care of your kid without issue. They also have a far more flexible timeline in general, which is attractive to households where all the adults work full time. Because there are only one or two educators per family day care, it is also easier to get to know them and understand their thoughts about your child, which can be very crucial in spotting any behavioural or medical issues before they become too serious.