Are you returning to Work?
The decision to return to work is one that many families in New Zealand have to face and there are many reasons why parents need to, or choose to, return to work. Depending on the needs of your family, parents can find themselves facing that decision at any stage during the early years – baby, toddler or preschool child.
Entrusting your precious child to someone else’s care, no matter what their age, can be very difficult. We understand that – which is why we’re here to assist you work through the process, step by step. Whether you are new to the “childcare” world, or have been through this before, hopefully we’ll be able to provide some ideas about what might help you and your little one at this time.
- Make enquiries early: it’s never too early to put your child’s name down on our waiting list. Some centres may be able to accommodate the days of enrolment that you request almost immediately. Others may have waiting lists and you may find that you cannot get your child into the centre at the time that you are due to take up your paid employment. So plan as far ahead as possible.
- Give yourself time, where possible: allow time, prior to your return to work, when you can visit the childcare centre and spend some time with us, with your child, before you leave them totally in our care for the first time. When children see you relaxed, spending time and having fun at Kindercare, they pick up on this and feel that it’s a safe, happy place to be. It also gives them time to get to know some faces and feel more familiar in the environment, which is important in helping them to settle.
- Do your research: check out the website, think about what you are looking for and how this compares to what is on offer. Most importantly – pop in for a visit. “A look is worth a thousand words” – so spend some time getting a feel for Kindercare.
- Consider your location options: do you want to drop your little one off at a centre close to home? Do you want your preschool child socialising with friends close to home who could potentially end up going on to the same primary school with them when they turn 5 years old? Or do you want your little one in daycare close to your place of work? For example, if you are the mum of a young baby, you may want to pop in during your lunch hour to check on them, or perhaps continue feeding. Or you may want to use the travel time as an opportunity for bonding – chatting to them about their day, singing songs etc. What works best for you and your child?
Moving on from the childcare environment and into primary school is a big and exciting step for preschoolers and their families. And like most things in life, being well prepared, usually enables a smoother transition. How can Kindercare benefit you and your child with this?
- Transition to school program: our early learning program for our older preschool children is specialised to meet their education and development needs at this age as they prepare to leave our care and begin their formal schooling.
- Lunch box days: in the childcare centre, for this age group, having days when their midday meal is a packed lunch, gives your preschool child the opportunity to become familiar with unwrapping sandwiches, opening lids, snack bars etc.
- Visits to the local primary school: this gives preschool children an opportunity to experience their new environment, in the safe care of the teachers they trust and with friends they know.