The Childcare Dilemma: What’s the Best Option for Your Family?

The Childcare Dilemma


 

Nanny, Au Pair, Preschool, Daycare, Babysitter…the list goes on and on!  Finding the best childcare option for your family is indeed a daunting task.  There are also many factors that should be taken into account when looking for a childcare provider: Education, background, cost, and training are some of the main features to take consider.

We asked our readers what their #1 regret was when searching for childcare options, the top response: Give yourself enough time to thoroughly research your options! Pregnant, have a young infant, about ready to go back to work? There is no such thing as starting your search too soon.

Where do you start? First, get your toes wet before jumping right in. Put some feelers out, ask other parents what they do for their child care needs, what they like/don’t like, what other options they have explored and why they decided to choose the option they did.  Each option mentioned below is different and unique and what works for one family may not be the best fit for another.  Take into consideration your child’s personality and your needs as well.  Do you work late hours?  Do you need care on weekends?  Is budget a huge issue?  Does your child do better one on one vs. a group setting?

The Choices:

Nanny

A nanny is employed by a family in either a live-in or live-out basis. The function of a nanny is to essentially be responsible for all care of the children in the home in a largely unsupervised setting. Duties are typically focused on childcare and any household chores or tasks related to the children. A nanny may or may not have any formal training; however, many have significant actual experience. A nanny typically works full-time at least 40 hours a week.

College Nannies and Tutors in Danville offers a complete set of placement and on-call childcare services specifically tailored to the needs of busy families and working professionals. By allowing College Nannies to handle all the details of finding a qualified nanny or babysitter and employing them directly, you can enjoy hassle free childcare with no worries. Having a College Nanny childcare professional in your home is a great way to enhance your family’s quality of life. Contact them at 925.550.6738 or visit them online at: www.collegenanniesandtutors.com

Au Pair

A young adult from another country who lives with you family and provides in-home childcare services. This young adult ages in range from 18 to 30, unmarried with no children, who goes abroad for a temporary period of time and lives with the ‘host’ family. Au Pairs typically work up to 45 hours a week in for a minimal state-mandated stipend and exchange for the opportunity to live with a family.  This childcare option typically provides more flexibility for your family’s schedule. Make sure you research the Au Pair services and training. Au Pairs should have training in CPR, first aid and child development as there are going to act as an extension of your child’s education. The average weekly cost of Au Pair service is about $350 – $400 a week.

Cultural Care Au Pair’s childcare and cultural exchange program offers families affordable childcare customized to their needs with a unique international perspective. Their dedicated Cultural Care offices in over 20 countries take care of screening and training each au pair — helping her obtain her visa, providing her insurance, and transporting her to your family’s home. You simply need to start the matching process to find the au pair best suited for your family.  To learn more and reach a local Cultural Care Representative, call 925-789-0709 today!

Babysitter

Temporarily cares for children while their parents/guardians are away for work assignments, date nights or other short-term or last minute situations.  Babysitters are available for children of all age groups. Experience can vary. Some will simply watch the child and play games while others can cook, clean, help with homework, and drive to activities or various other duties. Most babysitting jobs are part-time, paid by the hour for special occasions or regularly scheduled work.

SeekingSitters San Francisco East Bay Inland families can Rely on a local owner, and mom, to personally work for them by finding a Certified Professional Babysitter or Nanny Alternative for their specific childcare need, and Certified Professional Sitters for Pet Sitting, House Sitting, and Study Support in the East Bay.  They provide convenience to busy families by offering online services for scheduling, invoice tracking and sitter profile review. And most importantly, with SeekingSitters you know you are using a service you can Trust. All Certified Professional Sitters have extensive experience and have been thoroughly background screened at no additional cost to our family members.

Call Seeking Sitters today at 925-309-9711 or www.seekingsitters.com.

Child Care or Long Day Care 

Offers a structured day care service for pre-school children. They provide all-day or part-time care for working families and offer developmental programs within their care programs. Meals are usually provided with some long day care centers providing care for limited numbers of primary school children before and after school, and during school holidays. Typically, they separate children based off age, stage and ability.

Little People Childcare Services in Dublin offers a safe and engaging in-home preschool environment through play-based learning.  New theme every week with daily activities and lesson plans, nutritious meals and caring staff.  Licensed by the state of CA, CPR, First Aid and Nutrition certified!  Background checked, TB tested and fingerprinted!

Call today to schedule a tour:  925-640-9909 or email littlepeoplechildcare@ymail.com.

Pre-school

A quality preschool program includes the following components for children and their families:

  1. A safe and engaging environment that prepares children for Kindergarten Teachers whose professional background prepares them to show warmth, form supportive relationships with children, model enthusiasm, and show regard for students’ voices.
  2. Teachers who have learned through their professional preparation the best ways to  maintain order in the class and help students regulate their own behavior.
  3. Rigorously educated teachers who set goals to help children become productive,  responsible, curious and active learners by modeling advanced language and teaching  them ways of thinking in literacy, math, and science
  4. A focus on helping every child to learn, develop, and gradually do things independently
  5. Daily opportunities for communication between parents and teachers
  6. Expectations for professional growth and development of teaching staff

Primrose is an accredited private preschool that provides a premier educational child care experience. The Leader in Educational Child Care®, we partner with parents to help children build the right foundation for future learning and life. Our goal is to help children have fun while building Active Minds, Healthy Bodies and Happy Hearts®. Visit PrimrosePleasanton.com for more information!

Primrose School in Pleasanton offers their students a wide range of enrichment programs such as:

  • Noggin’ Joggin’®: Your child begins each day with simple “mind-stretching” exercises to activate prior knowledge and stimulate reasoning, memory and concentration.
  • Thumbs Up!®: Your child laughs and enjoys fun while engaging in physical fitness activities that are designed to strengthen bodies and stretch supple muscles.
  • Rhythm & Notes® with music from The Music Class®: Primrose Schools’ unique music program teaches your child to understand, appreciate, and make music by immersing them in the language and joy of music at school and at home.
  • Mud Pies®: Natural curiosity is awakened in monthly gardening and nature study. Your child plans the garden layout, plants the seeds, observes the plants growing and harvests the vegetables in the Primrose Patch.
  • Mucho Mundo®: Along with Spanish vocabulary, songs and Mexican customs, your child learns about cultural diversity.

Care.com launched in the U.S. in 2007 and today, they are the world’s largest online marketplace for finding and managing family care, with more than 10.7 million members, spanning 16 countries. On average, four out of five families subscribing to their site find their caregiver on Care.com, and a new job is posted every 30 seconds in the U.S.. As a one-stop-shop for families to meet all their care needs, they understand that one size doesn’t fit all. Their goal is to provide families with as many options as possible so everyone can find the care that best fits their unique needs.

Pointers & Questions to ask from the Experts from Care.com:

  • Tour the facility! View first-hand what type of activities they offer, is it clean and organized, are there age-appropriate toys, how does the staff interact and treat the children?
  • What is the emergency plan for intruders, fire, earthquakes?
  • What does their security entail? How are children accounted for, signed in/out?
  • Know the licensing requirements for your state.
  • Is the facility accredited by any specific organizations?
  • What ages do they take?
  • What is the teacher to child ratio?
  • Do the children have to be potty trained?
  • Are children separated based on age groups?
  • What is their sick child policy?
  • Are naps provided for younger children?
  • Where do they nap and for how long?

To access the care.com website and services, go to www.care.com.