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Choosing the Right Child Care Option for Your Family

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Parents often have to choose between hiring a nanny or sending their child to a child care center. This post looks at both options.

As parents, we want to support the development journey of our children as best we can. One of the hardest things for parents of young children is to figure out who to trust with care, but most households eventually need to weigh full or part-time child care options. 

Choosing between child care options can be stressful, confusing, and emotional for any parent. That’s why it is important that you put the time, effort, and research in to make sure you’re making the right choice for your family and your child’s development. 

Whether you’re a working parent who doesn’t have the ability to rely on family support on an ongoing basis or you’re an expectant mother to be, there are usually two paths to choose from: hiring a nanny or enrolling your child in daycare. 

Each path offers multiple benefits to parents and children depending on their specific needs. To decide which is right for your family, we’re looking at both options in more detail below. 

Hiring a Nanny: What to Expect

Hiring a nanny can be a great option for many first-time and experienced parents. If you are a parent who doesn’t have family members living close by to support, but are interested in keeping your child at home, a nanny can be the next best choice. 

Benefits of Choosing Nanny Services

Nannies provide a variety of benefits to you, the parent, and your child. Below, we have listed a number of the top advantages you can expect when hiring a nanny: 

  • Individual Attention: Having a nanny means that your child or children will receive one-on-one attention. A nanny will put their sole focus into ensuring that your child is looked after and reaches those all-important child development milestones
  • Logistics: Having a nanny come to your home to look after your young children (and potentially basic household chores) makes management of logistics easier knowing that a child care professional is on hand and will care for your child even if they are sick. 
  • Hours of Coverage: Most nannies can work on a flexible schedule meaning that parents have more control over when you need them. For instance, if a parent has a job that requires particularly early or late hours,  they can make their schedule suit yours. 

Considerations to Keep in Mind 

  • Hiring and Management: A nanny is essentially an employee, and you’ll need to interview several potential nannies, ensure you run a background check, call references, and write up a nanny contract. As a parent, you must be willing to actively manage that employee and the hiring process that comes along with it. 
  • Price and Varied Quality: Depending on the hours, flexibility, and experience your family would like, nannies are typically the most expensive childcare option available, and families often pay additional fees for classes and activities for their children on top of hourly wages or salary. The quality of a nanny is often subjective, and sourcing the right fit for your family can be a challenge.
  • Limited Socialization: Having a nanny limits your young child’s ability to socialize with other children, especially if they happen to be an only child. 
  • No Backup: If you don’t have a backup plan in the case that your nanny is sick or on vacation, you could be scrambling last minute to get someone to look after your child or cover for you at work. 

If you’re worried about finding and managing a nanny, but want to receive personalized care in your home, some child care centers, like Vivvi, also offer an in-home service where an experienced early childhood teacher can provide learning support for your child in the comfort of your home. These professionals will offer your child a one-on-one learning experience through early learning activities. Whether you are a remote working parent or a full time stay-at-home parent who needs additional support, this can be a welcomed option for you.  

Enrolling Your Child in an Early Childhood Education Center: What to Expect

Another popular option for parents is enrolling children in an early childhood education center, also referred to as child care centers. These child care programs are more than daycare – they offer early education programs run by trained early childhood educators (ECEs) designed by experts to stimulate childhood development.

A child care center is staffed by a team of ECEs and child care professionals. This child care option provides comprehensive care to children aged 6-weeks to 5 years old in a safe and stimulating environment. 

Benefits of Choosing a Child Care Center

If you’re a parent looking to enroll your child in an early childhood education center, there are a number of benefits you and your child can expect to receive including access to expert care and an engaging learning environment tailored to your child: 

  • Improved Socialization Opportunities: By choosing a child care center, your child will have the opportunity to socialize with other children of their age group. This means that your child will be able to learn and improve vital social skills that will benefit them in later life. 
  • Access to Expert Early Childhood Education: Having access to early childhood educators means that your child will receive consistent and comprehensive support and care. These professionals are trained in ensuring that your child is engaging in age-appropriate and fun activities that support childhood development skills on a daily basis. 
  • Structured Routines: Many early childhood education centers will offer parents and children a structured daily routine. While each day may look slightly different, as a parent you will know that your child will engage in early learning activities that focus on their motor skills, reading skills, and problem-solving abilities among others. 
  • Flexible Opening Hours: As a working parent, having flexibility on when you can drop off and collect your child is an added bonus. At Vivvi, we’re here for you. Our opening hours are flexible meaning that we can be on hand to help during hours that actually fit your work schedule (7am-7pm). 
  • Dependable: Child care centers employ multiple teachers so parents can always be guaranteed that there will be someone on hand to give their child undivided attention and care. This will also provide you with peace of mind so you can work in confidence knowing your child will always be in the hands of a professional. 

Considerations to Keep in Mind 

As child care providers, we encourage all parents that are considering enrolling their child in a child care center to take a tour of the campuses before applying. This will give you the opportunity to ask the potential child care provider questions along with getting a feel for the learning environment. 

Many parents who have chosen this route for child care have noted that they really only knew that they were making the right decision for their child when they connected with the people who will be taking care of their child on a daily basis. 

Deciding On an Option For Child Care

We can all agree that our children are precious and deserve the best care that we can provide them with. But, choosing a child care option is also a very personal decision that will differ from one family to the next. 

If you’re still on the fence about which option is right for you and your child, hearing the experience of other parents can help guide you in the right direction. Our head of Family Experience hosted an online discussion with real Vivvi parents that have been in the exact same situation you’re in right now. Listen to their journey of choosing a child care option that was right for their child. 

While this is undoubtedly a stressful decision for any parent to make, we guarantee that once you choose the option that is best for your family and your child’s future, you’ll reap the benefits straight away. 

Vivvi: Providing Your Child With In-Home and On-Campus Early Learning Opportunities

At Vivvi, we provide care and learning where you are. Our child care and early learning program can be accessed from any of our three New York campuses or from the comfort of your own home. 

The Vivvi In-Home program is the best of both worlds: individualized care from an ECE who brings the Vivvi Learning Model straight to your home so that your child can be looked after where they feel most comfortable. And our New York child care and early learning campuses provide your child with an imaginative, supportive, and engaging learning space where they can access the best in early childhood opportunities. 

For more information or to schedule a virtual tour, contact our team today.

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