Skip to main content

What am I getting myself into? Starting a family daycare


What am doing? Am I ready? I love children and I've been talking about it for awhile. But what am I getting myself into? 
If you've wanted to know what it means to be a family childcare provider read on...




Awe the life of a provider....
When you wake up early and have your first family knocking on your door before you've finished your cup of coffee at 7:23. You greet parents, help children and sometimes their moms with separation anxiety. Then the messes start with the activities you've set out. Your day consists of making order to disorder. You make meals that inevitably the child will eat maybe two bites from. You sit down to read a story to a couple of children and then be interrupted by another child needing to go potty, then cleaning up some glitter that spilled. Next you have to turn down "When the wheels on the bus" to answer the phone that might be the family wanting to start next week, but more likely it's just another telemarketer. When all of a sudden three kids all want the same coupe car at the same time even though there are four in the parking spot. After helping them figure that out it is time to make lunch. You have all the children settle into a fun activity of play dough or puzzles so you can cook a gourmet meal of grilled cheese sandwiches, pears, snap peas and a glass (well plastic cup) of milk. This will be in a record time of 17 minutes and 43 seconds. Not bad for 6 meals, plus one for your self that you will heat back up later. After you make it through 6 hand washes and sit down to a family style meal( Aka you the waiteress while they eat), then it's back to the restroom for potty breaks and diaper changes. Next you line out some cots and blankets including the elephant, dolly, binky, and the special soft blanket, no not that one.... you turn on some quite Mozart lullaby and pat some backs until after 30 or so minutes they are almost asleep and no one rang the door bell today. You take a short break to reheat your sandwich, go to the bathroom take a couple deep breaths, and watch as your precious little friends peacefully rest. Next you sit down to work on tomorrow's activities, writing down the items you need to get out of the art cabinet and making a mental note to pick up some pipe cleaners at the Dollar Tree soon.  Now you check in and the children are all sleeping soundly so you take this time to clean up the playroom, sweep the floors, pull something out of the freezer for you families dinner tonight, and then of course the baby will start to cry. By the time you get to her, pick her up to hold and rock her, 3 more children will start to wake up. Take a deep breath, nap time is officially over. You got this. After quietly bringing the 3 children and the baby into the play area and help get them settled in an activity, it's time to check diapers and potty breaks again. One by one they are all back playing again and you can work with your 3 and 4 year old with some scissor skills and color sorting activity designed just for them. And then after cleaning up the playroom for the 7th time, you realize it's almost time for parents to start showing up. From your memorized parents schedule, you start getting shoes, blankets, crafts to go home and other odd and end items ready in order of which child leaves first. After one last round of "The Bear Hunt" by Greg and Steve, the parents show up and you talk with each one about how their child's day went. Usually this goes well until you have to tell about the bitting that happened that day or the 3rd reminder to a parent to bring more diapers... and one by one they all go home for the day. Whew you made it... Now time to start on your family's dinner and bath and bed routine. Then after a long day you kick up your feet and think about how your day went. And this was an easy one... You remember the 3 year olds excitement when she finally cut out a circle by herself, the silly little pick-a-boo game you had with your 2 year old that literally had you laughing out loud, the thank you from the single mom that had a rough morning, the big hug, smile, and "I wove you so so much"  from the child that normally  knows how to push your buttons... yeah it's worth it. 

Popular posts from this blog

Circle time upgrade

This is our Focus board for our Circle time. I had fun picking out some cute decor this summer. This is what's displayed: We have a theme each month that we talk about at circle time, design our dramatic play around, have writing journals based upon, and crafts that are based around too. We have a weekly letter that we talk about at circle and have some activities during the week. We also have our calendar that we keep updated and only talk about it on occasion since our 2 and 3 year old are not much into right now. Our dry erase magnate board is used for writing morning messages, making lists together, practicing our letter writing, and holding up our circle songs. We also have our sign in display( the orange ones). I've bought name plates for each theme each month. We sign in every day and sing about our shirts or ask a question to answer each day. I've laminated our simple circle time rules ( that came from a program called 2nd Step) we go over our rules when we are hav…

How to stop sick children from coming to daycare

It's that time of year again. Children are getting sick and parents need to go to work and then they attempt to drop their sick child off at daycare ... This can be a sticky situation if you don't have a plan in place   To help avoid this situation from occurring here are some steps you can take for your family childcare: Step 1. Include in your parent handbook simply and clearly your expectations around sickness  Always go over this piece in your handbook during their enrollment. Maybe even have them initial this section   Step 2. Also during enrollment explain to your parents that you want to have a healthy atmosphere for their child to play and grow in and that is why you only care for healthy children. If you help them see this as benefiting them, they are more likely to follow your guidelines when asked.  Step 3.  Periodically ( flu season*cough) remind your family's of your sickness policy. Post a cute sign like my free example below as soon as the weather starts co…

Fun Winter house for dramatic play

I found this Idea on Pinterest a while back and thought I would give it a try. It was a great way to get the families at my daycare involved with our program..( I'm always looking for ways to involve my families) I asked them and everyone I knew to save their milk jugs, rinse them, and bring them to daycare before a 3 day weekend. My three assistants and I took turns with 2 glue guns going to create this wonderful space. 💪🏻 It took a total of about 2 days with plenty of breaks to finish. But our children loved it! They thought it was the coolest thing ever. The Dramatic play was flourishing. 
Have you ever tried a crazy Pinterest idea? How did it turn out for you? Leave me a comment below and share a story with me. I'd love to hear from you.