Selecting Child Care For Your Kid: Home Child Care Vs. Day Care Center

When the time comes to head back to work after having your child, you will need to decide on who is going to watch over them during the day. Thankfully, there are plenty of options available to you based on you and your child's needs. You may be between having home child care, or taking them to a day care center. Here is some helpful information to help you pick between these two options.

What's Home Child Care?

Just as the name implies, home child care is when someone comes to your home to watch your child, or you take them to another person's home. A stay-at-home mom that is looking to make some extra income on the side or a professional that is running a small business out of their home may offer these services.

What's A Day Care Center?

A day care center will be a facility that you take your child to, with a staff that takes care of your child during the day. Even though it's considered a business, it can still have a home feel to it depending on how the day care center is set up.

What Are The Advantages and Disadvantages of Home Child Care?

Many parents like using home child care because it allows their child to form a close bond with the person that is providing care for them during the day. It's typical for a caregiver to only be looking after one or two children at a time, which makes the care much more personal. There is less of a risk of your child becoming exposed to an illness, which can happen with a bigger group of children. It's also possible that your caregiver will be more flexible with your needs in terms of schedules and day rate.

The biggest disadvantage is that you must have complete faith in the person taking care of your child. It is typically a one-on-one situation, so you must decide if you are able to trust the individual rather than a staff that will be able to bring together the expertise of several people to care for your child.

What Are The Advantages and Disadvantages of a Day Care Center?

Day care centers will be much more regulated in terms of the structure of your child's day. They may even incorporate art and academic exposure to them at a young age, which helps with cognitive and language development. Some day care centers will allow you to check in with your child using cameras that are viewable online, which will give you peace of mind since you can watch them eat, nap, and play.

Of course, day care centers will expose your child to a bigger group, which can cause them to get sick more frequently. Parents may desire more one-on-one attention at a younger age, with a day care center often meeting the state requirements for how many adults are needed per child. 

Each situation has their own benefits, but it's best to tour a local day care center to find out if it would be a good fit for your child.