Signs of Quality Childcare Essay

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* Low child/teacher ratios * Low teacher turnover * Staff with higher education * Prior experience and education of the director * Well-compensated teachers who receive good benefits * Accreditation or a higher-than-minimum license * Are children watched at all times, including when they are sleeping? If your child is supervised at all times he or she is less likely to be injured, as well as more likely to be engaged in activities that promote learning. It is especially important that caregivers check on infants while they are sleeping because of the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Also, if adults closely supervise children outdoors, children are less likely to be injured. * Does the director have a degree and some experience in caring for children? Staff education is the best predictor of the quality of an early childhood program. Adults with training in early childhood education provide higher quality programs for your child, implement more appropriate activities, and do a better job of preparing your child for school. * Is the play space organized and are materials easy-to-use? If the play areas are organized and orderly your child will be able to make choices about what materials to play with and will be able to put toys away after playing with them. Materials should be organized by type on shelves or in containers. If shelves and containers are labeled with a picture or drawing of the materials it is easier for children to know where they belong. * Are diaper changing surfaces cleaned and disinfected after each use? Germs can be passed easily among children, particularly at the diaper-changing table. Cleaning and disinfecting the diaper-changing surface after each change reduces the chance that germs will be transmitted and your child will get sick. * Are cleaning supplies and other poisonous materials
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