Categories
Child Development

Let The Child Play

child playing

Today I dropped off Rey at daycare and there has been a new little girl in there the past few of times we have gone in. She is very quiet and shy and just observes all the other kids in the room holding her bottle. I saw her parents once on her first day of “school.” Like any child it is going to take them a few days, sometimes weeks to adjust to their new surroundings.

The mornings that I take Reagan in I typically hang out with her for a few minutes while she eats breakfast and I talk to her teacher. We have become friends over the past few months and we get to catch each other up on our hectic schedules. Today Reagan sat down next to this little girl to have breakfast and instantly started chatting her up. My child, not shy! I joke (not very funny when I really think about it) that Reagan is my milk carton child because she will walk up to anyone and wave to say hello. I’m trying to get her to understand that it’s great to be social but not to her extreme.

Anyways…this little girl just stared at Rey and watched her. She had already been given her food and was not interested in it all. I said hello to her and again, nothing. I asked Brandi if she was always this shy or if she just took a little longer in the day to get going. It was only 7:30 in the morning and sometimes it takes a while to get moving unlike Reagan; out of bed at 5:30 every morning and raring to go! Thankfully Brian and I are morning people.

Brandi told me that she was pretty much like this all day. Didn’t really interact with her classmates and rarely spoke anything. She said her parents were very strict with her and Brandi had a lot of rules she had to follow while the little girl was at daycare. She mentioned that she didn’t really get to play at home and from what it seemed lived a very sheltered life. I was saddened to hear this because I think all children should be allowed to be just that, children. And that includes giving them play time and letting them experience new things.

I was glad that this little girl was in daycare and was being given the opportunity to experience something new, hopefully make some new friends and let her inner child out. It will be good for her social development. No doubt Reagan will help encourage her along as she loves hanging out with her daycare friends; ever the social butterfly. In time I’m sure this little girl will feel more acclimated to her surroundings and start to enjoy herself and she can carry that new found freedom into her home life as well. Let the child play! Hence my quote of the day today:

“Play is the only way the highest intelligence of humankind can unfold.”

Categories
Child Development

Weighing The Pros And Cons Of DayCare

Since we moved back to California we decided to put Reagan into daycare a couple days a week. It would allow me the time to get work done, clean up around the house and run errands and mostly to have some personal me time. Reagan has a group of friends in Pennsylvania that we would have regular play dates with and that she became close to. Moving back to California we obviously don’t have the same people around and her two cousins aren’t exactly close so we decided looking into day care centers would allow her to make new friends and have a set educational structure away from home. We believed they put emphasis on child development education and would provide a safe learning environment.

baby-mom

Of course like any decision we have to weigh the pros and cons of daycare. We needed to evaluate if the time we were spending away from her during her impressionable years was worth it. Let me tell you sitting here for the third day in a row with a sick baby makes the cons of daycare list look a whole lot larger than the pros. So all of you who read this give me your take on it ~ what is your pros and cons list look like? Here is what we came up with:

PROS:

  • Trained staff in childhood education
  • Social setting within the same age group
  • Teaches sharing abilities
  • Daily exercise
  • Gains independence from Mom and Dad
  • Builds confidence and self esteem
  • Meals included for they day
  • Structured day including projects, activities and nap time
  • Learn more responsibility
  • Always a provider available
  • Daily Sheets sent home explaining the days activities
  • Toddler to Teacher ratio 1 to 4

CONS:

  • Spreading of disease and illness
  • Cost of daycare
  • Development skills may not be in timeline with your own child (Example ~ Reagan is starting to potty train and while she gets the constant attention at home, unless she is fully potty trained the daycare staff doesn’t have the time to sit in the bathroom with her until she goes and train them due to the toddler to teacher to ratio. She has to be able to tell them she has to go potty and understand the concept.)
  • Putting someone else in charge of her development during her most influential years
  • Don’t always get told conflicts between your child and others or teachers or verifying that manners and parental instructions are upheld
  • Missing her new moments, some “firsts”

Granted my list is a little bit different from others considering I have a one year old in day care. The list changes drastically if you have a newborn in daycare or if you have an older child who can effectively communicate how their day went.

All in all I have no regrets about having Rey in daycare a couple days a week. It makes it hard to believe as I sit here with her being home because of an illness she contracted from daycare I know that it is only making her immune system stronger. I believe that it is good for her to experience new people, new social settings and learning new behaviors. Of course there is always uncertainty but when I pick her up and she squeals in delight about seeing me and comes rushing over I melt and give her such a big hug. Although the separation is hard she learns new things, experiences new things and gets to come home and “share” her day. By singing a new song or showing me a new craft project they made we get to experience her day together.

Share your pros and cons list with me, post a comment and for all who do you will be rewarded with 10% off at Reagan’s Closet~ Shop online for the best educational toys for your toddler and baby games!