Mothers returning to work face many challenges. If you have mixed emotions and are feeling anxious about your transition back into the workforce, you are certainly not alone. One of the most emotionally difficult decisions is placing your child in the care of another.
Concern about choosing the right child care centre and being separated from your child for long periods will naturally arouse feelings of anxiety and a certain amount of guilt. Take heart, however, as there are so many reasons why you should have no need for second thoughts and why you can be completely confident about your child's welfare.
The Benefits for Your Child
Child care centres are not places that simply take care of your child. There's actually a great deal of learning taking place that provides the developmental building blocks for a child's future education.
Studies have shown that infants, from as young as six months and children up to pre-kindergarten age, benefit from participating in a child care environment. The structure, social environment and quality instruction offer important educational benefits.
The child care environment provides an abundance of opportunities for a child to practice important social skills. They begin using the foundations of vital social interactions and start learning about things like making friends, becoming part of a team and playing well with peers.
The skills of co-operating with others and solving problems, as well as the need for compromising and respecting others, are a vital part of social development. Children will have the opportunity to put these into effect on a daily basis in a structured and well supervised environment.
A Regular Activities Schedule
Structured times for play, eating and napping form a familiar routine. Sessions for songs and story-telling are interspersed with fun activities in the daily program.
All registered child care centres must adhere to the National Quality Guidelines and follow a program designed to take advantage of this early and vital stage of children's development. All programs focus on building the foundation for children's emotional, physical and cognitive skills. The structure provides the child with a sense of order and confidence in knowing what to expect. It also prepares them for the more formal requirements needed when they go on to regular schooling.
Knowing that your child will benefit in many ways from their experiences in child care will provide you with peace of mind and allow for a smoother transition back into the workforce.
We have the trickiest time finding childcare for our baby, as we both do shift work. My husband is a police officer, and I'm a doctor, so we always seem to struggling to get someone to look after our son when we are at work at nights. We want to know that he is being loved and cared for even when we are not there. Luckily we have a great childcare service that is flexible, and sometimes we can leave our son longer if we need to work later or if emergencies arise. This blog is about juggling childcare for shift workers.