Advantages of Children’s DaycareMarch 17, 2015
It is understandable if you are skeptical about daycare. The mere thought of leaving one’s child, barely a few weeks old, in the hands of virtual strangers can be a little unsettling if not downright frightening. However, renowned institutions like the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the University of California at Berkeley have chronicled the social and psychological benefits of child daycare—for both the kids and their parents. Here are a few key ones:
By taking responsibility for your child, daycare centers take the pressure off you. They typically have clear-cut rules for you to follow. For instance, they tell you the times you can drop off your kid and when to pick him/her up. Also, you would be informed of the activities that the center has planned for your children. You won’t have to worry about your child’s whereabouts or scramble for someone to take care of him/her when you are away.
Structure and Stability
Daycare is particularly appealing for its formal, structured setting. Most centers are staffed with caregivers who are trained in early childhood education. So, they are optimally qualified to watch over kids and nurture their development. Also, directors usually supervise centers; they are responsible for ensuring the smooth operation of the environment. And if a caregiver is sick or is on vacation, it does not disrupt childcare, since centers typically have a robust staff that can efficiently handle any problems that may arise.
Daycare staff members are specifically trained to take care of kids. So, that places them at a huge advantage over nannies who may not necessarily have that kind of training. Indeed, nannies are hired based on the parents’ discretion, rather than on any solid set of requirements. With daycare centers, however, you are assured that your child is in good hands. Moreover, you get to see and meet other parents who are in the same situation, and they can also be a great source of support and information concerning daycare and babysitting.
Socialization and Communication Skills
Granted, you might be able to find someone to babysit your kids. However, placing them in a daycare center exposes them to more than just one person. It is the ideal environment for your children to meet other children and form friendships with their peers; developing life-long social skills. And children can also learn how to communicate with their caregivers, who teach them basic social skills that include sharing with others, meeting and interacting with new people, and resolving conflicts. Your children will also learn how to play with peers that are younger and older than them, and how to interact with figures of authority that are not their parents.
Higher Academic Achievement
By teaching them social and communication skills at an early age, daycare centers can help your children steadily develop into sociable, well-adjusted people in the long run. And that particular benefit is often manifested in academics. According to a 2010 Reuters report on study results from the NIH, teenagers who had been placed in childcare—particularly high-quality childcare—scored slightly higher on academic and cognitive tests than those with lower-quality childcare. Also, children who had received top-notch daycare were less likely to act out than their peers.