Safe, knowledgeable child care providers can enrich your baby or child's experiences and give you the peace of mind you need while you work or take time for yourself.
Childcare is about child development, as well as allowing you to work or go to school.
- Sometimes a caregiver takes care of children in the family's own home. This person may take care of your child all day or for a shorter time. Usually a caregiver who lives with the family is called a nanny.
- A family childcare home cares for babies and children. This kind of care is in the providers' home. You can take your child there every day. Some are licensed by the Health Authority, and some are not.
- A childcare centre can be in a community centre, church or school. The workers have special training. Childcare centres are open all day. They take care of babies and children.
- A preschool program provides learning activities and games for children for three hours a day or less. Preschool programs are usually for children three-to-five years old.
- Out-of-school care is a program for school-age children at or near the school. It is before and after school and on school holidays. These programs are usually for children five-to-12 years old.
For all child care:
- Ask how the caregiver will provide an enriching environment for your baby.
- Discuss the caregiver’s discipline approach.
- Talk about nutrition and arrangements for providing breast milk for your baby.
- Ensure the caregiver has infant/child first aid training and emergency contact information.
When selecting child care or a babysitter for your baby, always trust your instincts. If you feel suspicious or uncomfortable with a caregiver or daycare centre, continue your search.