Most parents wonder whether they should put their children into a daycare program of some sort before they’re ready for official, formal schooling. Getting ready for elementary school is a big job, and earlier training can be helpful; yet there is a big difference between an ordinary daycare and a holistic daycare.
Holistic daycare is all about developing children as whole people. It involves preparing them for elementary school, of course, but that is just one small part of what the holistic learning environment has to offer. How can you make the most of it for your child?
The first step is understanding what a holistic daycare is all about. A traditional daycare concentrates on preparing children for the academic demands of elementary school. These daycare programs usually have short days and give children more time at home.
A holistic daycare center concentrates on developing a child in all aspects of their humanity. This includes their physical, emotional, and intellectual development. Holistic daycare programs concern themselves with nutrition, intergenerational interaction, and teaching children life skills that they will need far beyond elementary school.
Parents are crucial to the development of their children. Many ordinary daycares are all about giving parents a break from their children. The important thing is “crowd control,” and so it becomes essential that parents stay away so that children become used to being without them as quickly as possible.
A holistic daycare understands the importance of parents in their child’s development. A good holistic daycare will never ban parents from seeing their children. In some cases, of course, it may be best for parents to stay away until a child is comfortable with the daycare experience. That does not in any way diminish the importance of parents input in their child’s lives: including their daycare lives.
Every family operates on a different schedule, and there will be times when parents need to take their children out of daycare. That’s totally fine, but it’s also important to minimize these occasions for the good of your child.
Especially early on, the more often your child is removed from the daycare setting, the harder they will find it when they return. Daycare is about more than just getting into a routine. It’s about learning how to live life outside of the home. The more opportunity you give your child to do this, the better their skills will be as they grow older.
In general, adults are very good at telling children what they must not do. Every child is used to being told to stop, yet it is relatively rare for someone to explain to children what they should do instead. A holistic daycare will have staff trained to help children learn how to manage their own behavior in a non-punitive manner appropriate to each child’s age.
Appropriate behavior management means giving positive rather than negative discipline. It also includes helping young children see for themselves how their behavior naturally results in certain consequences, rather than having it simply told to them.
Over time, this helps children to learn self-control. As parents interact with daycare staff, they can learn skills that will complement what their children are learning in their daycare classes. With consistent input from both daycare and parents, children learn problem-solving skills and how to self-correct.
In the end, holistic daycare is much different than typical daycares provide. In a holistic setting, children develop as well-rounded individuals within a community, learning how to self regulate their own behavior and get a handle on their own emotions and intellectual capabilities even as they prepare for elementary school. Contact Ulu’s Beginnings today to learn more about how a holistic daycare can help your child develop spiritually, emotionally, physically, and intellectually.