Written by Allison Perry. Media by Kelsey Middleton.
Should children be sent to daycare? This is a common debate among the parental world. Some believe children simply should not go to daycare, but instead stay home until preschool, while others believe that a baby can be sent to daycare just weeks after being born and maternity leave has ended.
I had the opportunity to interview a mom, Gracie Morrison, whose child started daycare this fall. Morrison’s child was 17-months when he was enrolled into daycare this past August. Morrison explains, “The first two days it was really hard because he cried when I dropped him off, but after ten minutes he was perfectly fine.”
Morrison admits that before sending her child to daycare she did have some worries, due to the daycare horror stories she had heard, but one thing she did in order to overcome the fear of sending her child to daycare was to look at all of the daycares in the area. “I think I made the right decision sending him and picking where he went. You’ll have a gut feeling if it’s not the right place.”
Since beginning daycare, Morrison explains, her child has improved in many ways. “He’s done really good interacting with other kids… He is talking a lot more. He used to only jabber, and now he’s actually saying words. He actually plays with his toys; he knows what they do and what they are. He’s much more independent, and he’s not so clingy to me.”
The improvements Morrison has found in her son are not surprising. According to Fox News writer Julie Revelant, “One of the biggest benefits of daycare is socialization, because kids have to learn how to share, solve problems and be team players.”
Daycare is a safe environment for children to move away from being so attached to family members and become comfortable with new people. Through interacting with other children, as well as adults outside of family members, children learn how to better socialize, allowing them to become more outgoing. This shows not only in the fact that Morrison’s son is now using actual words, but also in the fact that he is actually playing with his toys, which he most likely learned how to do from watching other kids at daycare play with their toys.
Revelant also explains that if “kids are given enough learning and socialization opportunities, stimulation, and affection,” in daycare, then sending children to daycare before they enter preschool allows them to grow familiar with a school-like schedule and routine, which makes it easier for them to adapt once they are enrolled in school.
Ultimately, sending a child to daycare is a decision that is only meant to be made by the child’s parents. There is no right or wrong answer to the question of whether or not a child should be sent to daycare. However, it is important to consider the benefits mentioned in this article, as well as numerous other benefits of sending a child to daycare, during the decision-making process