The Benefits Of Childcare Services

Dear all anxious mums new to CCCs, I feel a compelling need to share this with the mums who have caregivers that are maids, relatives, in-laws and have not yet exposed the kids to CCCs. This is a personal experience in which I hope others will not have to make the same mistake as I did.

My first born is taken care by close relatives who took care of my husband. We enjoyed the convenience of them staying next block and had total ease of mind. The good thing about family members as caregivers are that you need not worry at all as your baby will be super well taken care. I need not worry if he has enough to eat, I need not worry if the food is nutritious, or he has enough toys to play or if he gets enough sleep. All physcial needs are being addressed (sometimes overdone in my own opinion, but hey, they are the ones taking care so I should be glad).

The first signs of trouble started when my boy reached 18 months. Being a ‘little’ Kiasu. I wanted to put him in full day care to expose him to social skill, life skills, some academic stuff etc. Strong objections from caregivers were raised. So strong that my husband and I relented and put him in a 2 hour church kindergarten instead. So ‘win-win’ situation from both sides. I get the kid to study and mix with other kids, the caregivers get to spend time with him. So my boy spent his N1 days there. Through consistent interaction and conversation stimulation by the caregivers, my boy grew to be very conversant and even teachers commented that he spoke like a little adult.

Then the real trouble started. It was during the teacher-parent session in Nov last year (end of N1) that I found out by accident that the caregivers had requested for my child to be put in another class due to some misunderstanding the caregivers had with the teacher. (the caregivers are the ones who bring my boy to school and wait there everyday) The caregivers have engaged in an ugly brawl with the school and has been using the parents’ name to demand certain ‘rules’ and ‘requests’. I realised things were not working out. My boy was asked everyday by the caregivers (out of pure concern and love) if other kids bullied him, if the teacher gave him enough food or scolded him etc. Although I have absolute faith in the school, I realised that it is not working out as the home environment was not right and conducive for academic and character development. It was ok to play whole day, mess up the house and not keep the toys, complain about the teachers, not pay attention in school but concentrate on who is bullying who in school etc.

Then I started to pay more attention to the type of education my boy is receiving. Then I started to panic, especially after some research on how kids are expected to learn grammar, spelling, sentence construction etc. (Thank heavens that I found this forum!!!) And my N2 boy cannot even count properly from 1 to 10.

I sent him to a full day CCC, at the expense of the harmonious relationship with the caregivers. And they keep telling me how no one else can love the kids that are not their own like they do. And teachers in full day centres would not have the patience for kids for the whole day and the kids are better off at home. And that they could teach him the ABCs and count the 123s. I gave them 2 months to prove. And they failed miserly at the tasks for the reasons that my son is too tired to learn, he is not well, he was distracted by tv and after tv was bedtime etc etc. There was 101 reasons why it was ok not knowing ABCs and being able to count from 1 to 10.

The results I gains from the full day care was enormous. By the 3rd week, he could take off and wear his own pants, go to the toilet independently, wash his own hands, brush his own teeth, converse in Mandarin (I’ve been trying to get him to converse with me in Mandarin as we are from an English speaking family). All these were unheard off when he was at the caregivers. He was totally dependent. It took him only 3 weeks to learn such life skills! I realised that the kids learn things very fast and people are right to compare kids to a sponge that are consistently absorbing and learning from their environment.

Regardless of how much love the caregivers can provide, nothing beats the trained or experienced teachers in providing the envrionment where kids are taught to be independent and be able to meet their basic needs themselves, and also an environment of learning and sharing.

The kids of today are expected to know so much in primary school, so foundation starts in pre-school. I thought I still had time and nursery is just for playing. I just visited a PCF today to enquire about their curriculum. The N2 kids there have started to recognise simple words for english and mandarin. The teacher mentioned that the kids would be able to recognise 30 simple Mandarin words by now. My boy has difficulty recognising alphabets due to weak foundation in N1. He is only introduced to strokes in Mandarin characters after I put in full day care. So he is far off now as compared to the PCF kids. I started late. I thought I had time. How very wrong. Now playing catch up… but slowly cos I also do not want to stress him out.

Now, we have dinner at the caregiver’s house every evening cos the they miss him so much. We have to keep reminding them that it is for my boy’s good that he is spending time in the CCC. Showing to them the things that he has learnt and benefited.

So if your heart is aching to take your child away from loved ones to place in CCC, think of the long term benefits that the child will reap especially from a strong academic foundation which even some parents ourselves are unable to provide (like me). The foundation will go a long way (and the consequences of not having the foundation will too!) Balance can be achieved by letting the child spend evenings, weekends with loved ones, and choosing a good childcare centre.

Now I know I am not alone in terms of plight. Please seriously consider giving your child the opportunity to be immersed in CCC cultures and learning environment. It WILL be much more than grandparents, care givers can provide!

 

Agree with what "quixation"

Agree with what “quixation” mention about parents being the best teachers. In addition, our partnership with teachers, are crucial in nurturing a kid.

What I like about childcare :
– independence (eg they want to feed themselves)
– kids are exposed to “sharing” and “empathy”
– collective learning and interaction with peers ( I see I learn)

I do agree that





I do agree that sending your child to a childcare centre helps to train independence pretty quickly. However, in addition to the cost and distance consideration, it is important to find a good childcare centre with good curriculum and caring teachers for the child to fully benefit. Just like PCF, where different centres operate differently, I find that not all childcare centres prepare children adequately for P1. From my experience, parents cannot rely solely on the childcare centre but still need to reinforce what the child has leant (not necessarily by doing homework or assessments) at home. I did encounter instances where a child had attended some famous and expensive pre-school/childcare but was not fully prepared for P1. As both parents had been busy working, the child seemed to have forgotten what was taught in the pre-school/childcare as revision/reinforcement had not been done at home.

Homework?!!! Spare the Pre Schoolers.

I hate HOMEWORK during my school days. So…….

I hope all work can be complete in school and the Tots can do what they enjoy when @ home. 🙂

Bowie

Homework is a responsibility

Homework is a responsibility… It is a LONG TERM RESPONSIBILITY from P1 to x number of years!

So, spare the preschoolers…

Let them have time to learn thru play…

Homework is a responsibility

Agree that homework can be made fun when they are young , maybe from pre-school to pr 2. The challenge comes when they are in upper pri and sitting for major exams… homework is definitely not fun.

And the saddest part is that homework is beyond the parents’ control – usually given by dedicated teachers who want his or her class pupils to excel . Work can’t be fun all the time – think of a pianist playing her piece over and over again to attain the perfect standard,  think of the swimmer swimming lap after lap to achieve that perfect timing! I don’t think it’s ever fun. In this case, it’s all about commitment, responsibility , diligence and discipline… that is something we need to inculcate in our children. Our children should not expect to be entertained all the time – they need to play their part – as teachable and humble learners.

sorry maybe i put it

sorry maybe i put it wrongly.

Not homework for Childcare kids..What i mean is why formal schools (primary, secondary) have homework? So that they can revise at home too! So what i meant is that everything needs revision at home!

And revision at home need not be a chore or bore coz it can all be a game!

Singing, playing pretend, applying onto daily activities are all revision for the kids.

I remember my gals school was having this WATER theme 1 month ago and the school sent us these notices to inform the parents and they even wrote some small notes telling us we can teach them that water is precious, how water has no definite shape during say, bath time or when washing hands, brushing teeth, even when drinking. And we can even include maths in it like ‘ a cup, 2 cups, etc..half full, empty , etc.)

It doesnt necessarily mean sit down homework kind….

Anyway I sees a lot of kids dragging their feet to do their homework and some are so tired and dreads having tuitions. So i tell myself I must nurture the love for learning in my child so that he/she wont think doing homework is a chore but rather a responsibility and another channel to learn. 

Then again, if the parents feel its a chore to do homework so will the kids.. Its a vicious cycle we all have to go through. 

Homework can be fun too..just need some thoughts and time..Good luck parents.

 

PCF kindy

My child was from PCF. I would say, it depends on which pcf center you are sending your child to. Different center is operated differently.

My PCF center claimed that they are not prepared the child for p1.
The truth is several my child’s classmates go to remedial class once they enter p1. As a parents, you can’t rely on pcf kindy. You have to do you own coaching @home.

My 0.05

Homework for preschool kids

I am strongly against children attending childcare to have any homework.  They have been in the school for the whole days and 5 days a week and there is no need for ‘homework’ per se. 

Time at home should be spent meaningfully with parents and siblings, etc.  Time can be used for other activities and homework is such a boring thing.  If parents want to give their kids additional practice, then that’s fine but to compel ALL parents to spend time with their kids to do homework can be a chore for many.

It is acceptable for kindergarteners to have a bit of homework coz their sessions are shorter but some childcare kids?  Better don’t lah!

 

Parents are the best teachers

Good to hear that working parents like us do have alternatives from horror maids and arguement with caregivers who simply really spoills the kid.

However, I must stress that everything starts from home and most importantly from the parents ourselves.  I dont agree that we just let any caregivers or even Nursery teachers to take over the actual job of teaching the basics during these foundation years. I am not  just referring to whether the child can read  or count but also the morals and values that we want our kids to grow up on.

I am working parent too and i understand how tough and limited our time is but with just minutes a day just talking, singing or reading with your child can do alot for their crucial developmental 1st,  2nd year.

Kids learn through play. Count the steps they take on the stairs to teach them counting, sing ABC song to learn alphabets or best, since they watches TV, invest in some good education DVDs or VCDs to be  played to them in the day by caregivers. Not only does it keeps the children occupied for a while, they will learn alot of stuff from there too!

No matter how much love the caregiver showers, how trained the teachers are, I personally believe nothing beats parents. Why are there homeworks? Why are there teachers and parents sessions? I believe the reason behind all these is so the kids gets enough revision or stimulation AT HOME.

Parents are the best teachers to our own kids..Nothing beats this!

I salute all KSP parents who take great efforts to share experiences and advices, through this you are already doing something for your child! And that is learning more!

Kids really makes us better people, no doubt about it!

🙂

 

Related Articles