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  1. #1
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    Default Family daycare

    Please tell me about family daycare, i want to hear your experiences.

    Is there any kind of curriculum?

    Do they take babies (9-10 months old) - how does that work if they are also looking after older kids? (Ie long daycare centres have seperate rooms but i imagine this isnt possible at family daycare).

    Do they normally do similar hours to long daycare (ie 6am-6pm approx)?

    We had ds down at a couple of long daycare centres since before he was born. One has now turned around & said they dont have vacancies until July (he was down to start in May) even though when we submitted the paperwork they said they definitely had spots for May 2015.

    The other place has said they wont confirm whether or not he has a spot until a couple of weeks before he is due to start. That is pretty ridiculous as it would leave me in a real mess if i find out 2 weeks before i go back to work that he doesn't have a place.

    There aren't really any other long daycare centres in our suburb so now im looking at family daycare options.

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    Default Family daycare

    My Dd is actually at her first day at family day care today.

    Dd is the second youngest baby and the carer has kids before and after school as well so Dd goes on the school run when she drops them off and picks them up, she is also at play group today which I thought was awesome.
    She does planned activities and then they have a lot of free play but she has a great set up with a big play room and a huge back yard with toys, chickens, cubby house etc, I beleive they still have to follow the same time of frame work as a centre.

    The carer has a 7 hour a day minimum, so that's how long I have sent Dd for, I think most have similar hours to a long day care.

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    heartstringz  (04-02-2015)

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    Thanks!

    My concern is how do they stop older kids stepping on, kicking, hurting etc the babies? I know they don't necessarily do it maliciously, they just don't understand, but thats why i like the seperate rooms at long daycare

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    My kids used family day care. I love it and would always choose family day care for little kids over a centre.

    FDC educators work to the same curriculum as long day care centres.

    The balance of ages is one thing I looked at when I was choosing a carer, the ratios are 4 kids under school age, they will obviously all be cared for in the same space by the same person.

    Different educators set different hours, again, if you need specific hours it's something you need to look for.

    I suggest thinking about all the things you want/need in a carer (hours, ages of other kids, wether they do before and after school care, their philosophy, etc) and go from there.

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    heartstringz  (04-02-2015)

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    Quote Originally Posted by heartstringz View Post
    Please tell me about family daycare, i want to hear your experiences.

    Is there any kind of curriculum?

    Do they take babies (9-10 months old) - how does that work if they are also looking after older kids? (Ie long daycare centres have seperate rooms but i imagine this isnt possible at family daycare).

    Do they normally do similar hours to long daycare (ie 6am-6pm approx)?

    We had ds down at a couple of long daycare centres since before he was born. One has now turned around & said they dont have vacancies until July (he was down to start in May) even though when we submitted the paperwork they said they definitely had spots for May 2015.

    The other place has said they wont confirm whether or not he has a spot until a couple of weeks before he is due to start. That is pretty ridiculous as it would leave me in a real mess if i find out 2 weeks before i go back to work that he doesn't have a place.

    There aren't really any other long daycare centres in our suburb so now im looking at family daycare options.
    Each daycare is different. There are 5 near us.

    #1: only takes 3-5 year olds. Focuses on toilet training and age appropriate learning. 8am-4pm. Max 5 kids, one carer.

    #2: take 1-5 year olds. Lots of age appropriate learn via play. Plus chool readiness. Several carers, separate rooms. 8am-5pm. 5:1

    #3: take 0-2 year olds. Focus on play. 2 carers. Max 8 kids. 9am-3pm

    #4: 1-8 year olds, plus vac care for up to 12 year olds. One big room, screens to separate, for 4-8 year olds. 1-3s in another room. Separate nap room. 5 carers, 1:4. 8am-4pm

    #5: 0-8 year olds. Two houses. Separate rooms for babies, toddlers, pre-school, after school. Also does vacations care. Uses curriculum guidelines found on government website. Qualified staff, 1:3 ratio in younger rooms, and 1:5 in older rooms. 1:8 in vacation care. 7am-6pm

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    heartstringz  (04-02-2015)

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    Quote Originally Posted by heartstringz View Post
    Thanks!

    My concern is how do they stop older kids stepping on, kicking, hurting etc the babies? I know they don't necessarily do it maliciously, they just don't understand, but thats why i like the seperate rooms at long daycare
    I assume they would always be supervised and honestly when I went for the stay and play last week, none of the other kids, including my Dd were interested in going near or bothering the baby, there were toys set up and all the kids were engaged in activities they didn't seem to take much notice.

    It might be worth going and checking one out in your area? Have a chat about your concerns, get a feel for the environment. When I went I was honestly so impressed, they have great recourses I think when it comes to toys and activities etc and I got a really great vibe. Trust your instinct when you go and have a look at one, you will know if it's right for you and your Ds.

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    heartstringz  (04-02-2015)

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    I just read your update. My DD was 11 months when she started, none of the older kids ever hurt her, it did not occur to me that might happen to be honest. I think it was the opposite, the older kids were always really kind to the babies.

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    heartstringz  (04-02-2015)

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    From my experiences the answers to your questions often depend on the individual educator. I'd say most would take a 9 month old, but might have a minimum age of 6 weeks for example.
    There is a maximum of 4 children under primary age in their home at any one time. However some educators limit really young ones, e.g they'll only take one baby under 1 year old each day. Also they set their own opening hours - and you only pay for what you book.

    With regards to curriculum etc Family Day Care is run under the same guidelines as child care centres are, though of course individual educators may do more or less planning etc.
    When you get in contact with your local scheme they'll arrange for you to meet a few different educators and then go from there

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    heartstringz  (04-02-2015)

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    Ok thanks everyone! Ill have to do some more research. To be honest family daycare isn't really my preference but i think we are running out of options

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    Is there any kind of curriculum?
    Not that I ever knew of. But then regular day care doesn't necessarily have a curriculum either. Until 'kindy' programmes start they seem to be determined by the individual centres.

    Do they take babies (9-10 months old) - how does that work if they are also looking after older kids?
    Yes. We had dd at 4mths in a family day care. There was also a 2yr old and two other 6mth olds at the same time.

    Do they normally do similar hours to long daycare (ie 6am-6pm approx)?
    Yes. Depends on carer. Our lady did hrs to suit her families and also offered after hours care for one client who did shift work.

    One thing I didn't love about family care is that there wasn't a support person if she had her hands full or needed a break- who is there to help out? Compared to long day care having result shift changes and scheduled breaks.

    I did like that it was similar to home being smaller and more one on one care. But now dd is 16mths she loves long day care for having a larger variety of friends and carers to interact with as well as the tailored activities for her age group.

    Some long day cares have crazy waiting lists. But most times if you 'bother' them enough you can get in. Alot of the ppl on their waiting lists never actually enrol. And they are so swamped with enquiries they don't need to follow you up. You really need to persist with them.
    Once your foot is in the door it's a lot easier to get extra days.

    We played the chicken and egg game with work too. I couldn't start work till we got day care but we couldn't pay for day care till I started work.
    It's very frustrating when you can't get an answer.


 

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