Published Mar 10, 2005
This has been weighing on my mind for a while now- Now that I've
heard that I'm accepted at two of the three schools I've applied to for direct entry MSN programs, I figure it's time...
I will be returning to school full time starting this Fall and will need to figure out the childcare situation for our two girls (they will be aged 1 and 3 in the fall) that would work best. We are thinking about either daycare or an aupair. I'm leery of daycare because of a horrible 2 morning a week preschool/daycare experience we are just recently emerging from with my older DD.
I'm feeling super guilty about it all. I was secretly hoping I wouldn't get in to any of my programs so I wouldn't have to figure the childcare thing out. I definitely don't love being a SAHM- but I'm soooo ambivalent using full time childcare too.
I would love to hear from other nursing students with experience using nannies, au pairs, daycare, etc. Specifically, some things I'm thinking about are:
-What do you do when your child is sick?
-How do you make the decision about what kind of childcare will work
best for your child?
-How can you know in advance what will be best foryour child's personality when you've not used FT childcare before and you're kids are a bit older (Charlotte will be 1 and Elizabeth will be 3) and used to having you home?
-What do you love/hate about your childcare situation and what should I look for/questions should I ask?
Many many thanks!
jenrninmi, MSN, RN
I think most, if not all moms feel the way you do about putting their children in daycare. So, is your 3-year-old having problems with going to preschool? She cries etc when you leave?
When the kids have been sick (which has been really rare) my husband will stay home or I have a friend that has helped me out.
I don't have a lot of options where I live about what kind of childcare to choose, we don't have any centers, just home daycare providers, (although we have 30-something in my little town). And my kids have to stay in my town because they are school-aged. (7 1/2 and 6) and they go to school and would take the bus to and from daycare.
I like my provider because she does arts/crafts, plays games, no tv etc. Make sure you check references. I have a whole list of questions to ask the daycare provider while interviewing them. If I can find it, I'll post it here for you. Good luck!
Hi Jess,I think most, if not all moms feel the way you do about putting their children in daycare. So, is your 3-year-old having problems with going to preschool? She cries etc when you leave? When the kids have been sick (which has been really rare) my husband will stay home or I have a friend that has helped me out. I don't have a lot of options where I live about what kind of childcare to choose, we don't have any centers, just home daycare providers, (although we have 30-something in my little town). And my kids have to stay in my town because they are school-aged. (7 1/2 and 6) and they go to school and would take the bus to and from daycare.I like my provider because she does arts/crafts, plays games, no tv etc. Make sure you check references. I have a whole list of questions to ask the daycare provider while interviewing them. If I can find it, I'll post it here for you. Good luck!
Yeah- my older daughter was going to preschool 2 mornings a week. She had some separation issues at first crying when we left her,etc but she grew to love it. The both of the teachers quit and they hired 3 new teachers- none of whom I love. Elizabeth started freaking out *at home* when we triend to get her ready for school and kept saying"i dont want to go to the crying school" Just breaks my heart. She doesn't have to be there and if it isnt' fun there is no point. I went to school with her for two weeks to try to get her more comfortable but nothing worked. In fairness to her- I didn't like how the teachers interacted with the kids or with each other so I don't blame her for not wanting to go back. It was our first experience with daycare/preschool and it has me thoroughly freaked out!!
twinmommy+2, ADN, BSN, MSN
I have a 4 year old and three year old twins in day care now. All of them have been in for over 2 years now and are flourishing in that envioronment.
-What do you do when your child is sick? Now that DH is working second shift, he is able to stay home with the sick one while the rest go to day care and I to school. Before when my MIL stayed with us they would stay with her if they were sick.
-How do you make the decision about what kind of childcare will work
best for your child?I had to look at childcare from the viewpoint of finances. I looked for the best one that vouchers would pay for and that we could make up on the co payments. Thankfully, for the money the one they are at now is an absolute blessing! The kids love their teachers (not just caregivers, but teachers all of them!).
-How can you know in advance what will be best foryour child's personality when you've not used FT childcare before and you're kids are a bit older (Charlotte will be 1 and Elizabeth will be 3) and used to having you home?There is no way you can find that out unless you take them to day care for about a couple of weeks. I would recommend that you take them for enough time for them to get over the stranger anxiety phase and get used to the day care setting cause you can't get an accurate picture of how well they will do there until they are used to the place.
-What do you love/hate about your childcare situation and what should I look for/questions should I ask? Look at licenses and whether or not they are insured. Then look at sick issues, how do they handle sick children. What types of disipline do they use? Do they spank (Its probably not legal for public agencies to do it but I'm not sure so its a good question to ask if you don't condone spanking by others)?
What do you do when your child is sick?
I either miss class or my hubby misses work. There is a program at the hospital for sick kids which is staffed by an LPN but I have never used it.
I guess by their personalities.. My dd thrives in routine and structure. She is a very by the book child and her daycare is perfect for her. I pesonally will not use home daycare, nannies or au pairs.. I like knowing that the daycare providers are being watched by other providers and the other staff. My dd goes to daycare on a military base and they are VERY big on rules.
I don't think you CAN know in advance. My dd has always been in daycare. I guess you just put them in what makes YOU comfortable and then go from there.. If they are not happy in the daycare, then put them somewhere else.
I would find out about cameras. My dd's daycare has cameras in every nook and cranny. I can see it all from the front desk. I would ask what they teach and don't teach. A lot of daycares will not "teach" them anything. I would find out about the food. Some daycares feed the kids "crap" like mac n cheese, hot dogs, etc.. I am kind of a food snob and won't let my DD eat that unless it is a special occasion like a birthday party or something.. My dd's daycare has an excellent food program.
I think the most important thing is how you feel when you walk in there. do you want to walk right out?? If so, follow your gut and don't put your kids in there. You know when you find the right one. If you feel comfortable when your kids are at the daycare, you know it is ok. There is a lot to be said about maternal instinct.
Also, if you have a problem with any part of the daycare do not be afraid to speak your mind. I go immediately to the source when I have a prob. with the daycare and we work together to fix them. I am VERY VERY picky about anyone watching my child so if you are my kids provider you better be perfect. haha.
HisTreasure, BSN, RN
I am going through a childcare issue myself, but hopefully the Lord has sent us an answer... I used to be a SAHM and putting the kids into daycare was very difficult. Even now I don't like it totally, and the past few days my kids have been with my husband or parents and it dawned on me how much I dislike daycare as a whole. Beginning tomorrow I am going to a home daycare and I like the woman. I asked about what she cooked, her discipline and nap policies, field trips, sick days, safety issues, educational elements, toilet training, and hours. Then I asked her payment options. Once licensed I will most likely pull them from daycare and use her occasionally on the weekends for a day out or perhaps 3 mornings a week if I do part time/per diem nights. I too was considering an au pair or nanny, just because it seemed as though it would be economical (my children are 1, 2, and 3) but I am finding that I am sadly mistaken. If I was able to find a nanny who would take room and board, use of a car, and a modest salary I would be in heaven! Unfortunately...those individuals do not exist! :rotfl:
Thank you so much for your responses! The more I hear different people's experiences it is so helpful for me! I think that finding a childcare solution is as much what works for the parents as what works for the child from what I'm hearing.
It sounds like it is best to find a provider who matches your style in terms of structure, discipline, values, etc as possible. I think home daycare with a provider I really trusted would be a better fit for me than a large group daycare. But if an aupair can be affordable then that is an option I should look into too I guess.
This may sound lame but the idea of my kids taking their naps on little mats on the floor makes me so sad. Whenever I think of group daycare I think of those little mats. I just want my kids to feel comfortable and safe and that they are loved. Is this too tall an order for a non-family childcare provider? Am I crazy for even thinking this is possible?!
This may sound lame but the idea of my kids taking their naps on little mats on the floor makes me so sad. Whenever I think of group daycare I think of those little mats. I just want my kids to feel comfortable and safe and that they are loved. Is this too tall an order for a non-family childcare provider? Am I crazy for even thinking this is possible?! -Jess
((Hugs to you!!)) I know exactly how you feel! Even when my kid were in a daycare center they didn't sleep on mats, they had cots, so maybe you'll find some that don't have mats? And if you choose a home daycare instead, I doubt they'll use mats, probaby a bed, crib (for your 1-year-old), couch etc. It will be alright. It will be great for them to be with other children.
Hello! You are NOT alone. I will graduate from Nursing School Aug. 5th and this whole childcare thing has been a
HUGE issue for the past year and a half. Before staying at home with my 2 children (ages 2 and 4) I was a daycare director. Like you, part of me actually did not want to make it into Nursing so that I wouldn't have to feel guilty leaving my kids! I decided to hire an individual to watch my children. I have to admit though, if I could do it over, I would find a very respected daycare to put them in. We have had soooo many problems with the 2 babysitters we have had. For example, them being late, not turning out to be who they seemed to be when we interviewed, getting sick all the time, not enforcing our rules for our kids......the list goes on and on. This semester, I have missed a ton of class and my husband has missed a ton of work due to the babysitter getting sick. Its a very difficult decision to make. If you decide on a daycare, talk to everyone you know who has kids. Visit tons of daycares. ASK the teachers what their qualifications are and stick with your instinct about them! Also, don't set up an appointment to visit the daycare, just show up. If you make an appt, everyone will be expecting you and you won't get an accurate picture of how things are there. If you decide on a babysitter, use a professional agency. Yes, its much more expensive but it may help reduce your stress in the long run. I hope I haven't discouraged you. I don't regret going back to school. I LOVE nursing and I know it was the best decision I could have made even though the first few months were tough. Good luck to you! :-)
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