We have been so incredibly lucky that I have been able to bring my sweet Charlotte to work with me and thus, have avoided sending Charlotte to day care. That luck was taken to the next level in recent months, as my Milly (Mother-in-law) has been watching Charlotte in the mornings and then I take her in the afternoon (just in time for nap time!).
With that said, we’ve decided that Charlotte is getting to the age where she needs more interaction with kiddies her age, a bit more stimulation than we can manage in our house, and some more opportunities to grow, learn and be challenged.
Starting the search for daycare is overwhelming to say the least. I literally went through and wrote a list of all the centers in our area, then sought out reviews, perused websites, made calls and started eliminating some. Ultimately, I narrowed it down to three, which is now narrowed down to two.
I eliminated the most recent (one of my top threes) because the program did not accept children under two and honestly, I had a bad feeling. I read two reviews online… one was totally glowing, one was the opposite.
Anyway, the two left both seem to be pretty great options. We went for a tour of one last Friday and really fell in love with it. The program uses the Reggio Emilio Approach, which focuses on a child’s ability and desire to learn. The school seems to really empower children to become a part of the community, to be helpful little beings, to explore not only items and materials, but also concepts. Instead of telling the children what to do, they help them to uncover options and let the kiddies choose. Sounds pretty cool, right? The kids (yes, even the tiny 2 year olds), help to serve lunch and set the table! YES!! Let’s teach the little one to contribute!
We both have a really good feeling about the school, but have one more tour scheduled for next week before we’ll make up our mind.
Once enrolled, Charlotte will likely start at a couple of mornings a week and then transition to 4-5 mornings a week over the next several months. I’m excited. I think this will be really great for C… but I can’t help feel sad/apprehensive/nervous… this will be Charlotte’s first time having a life that’s independent of mommy and daddy. I mean, obviously Nana and her Grandparents babysit her or take her for overnights, but that’s still very much within the realm of mommy and daddy. This is different. Charlotte will have her own friends and her own activities. It’s SO, SO good for her and SO exciting, but it makes it REALLY feel like my little baby girl is growing up.