Ask a Parent Coach: Childcare
Q. How can I prepare for leaving my baby in childcare when I return to work?
A. Plan ahead: Advance work can make this often-stressful transition a little easier. Visit caregivers with your baby, to help both of you feel a little more comfortable with separating. Schedule time to talk to caregivers about your child, and get to know them. Prepare for returning to work by transitioning slowly the week before you are due back at work. Leave your baby at childcare for an hour the first day, gradually lengthening the time you are away, which lets your baby know you always come back. Give yourself plenty of extra time in the morning to get ready, which can decrease stress.
Q: Ask a Parent Coach: My child has some special needs, and I want to make sure she gets the best possible care when she starts daycare. What should I look for to make sure that happens?
A. Many child care providers work with children who have disabilities or special needs. Talk to potential child care providers about your child’s needs and ask about how they have worked with children with special needs in the past. Experienced caregivers may have ideas for possible adjustments to toys, equipment and activities to help ensure that all children learn, and to help each child make friends and be part of the group. Remember that your child with special needs is a child with unique strengths and abilities, and that the right daycare will support her — and all children — by being inclusive of all abilities.