Considering a Daycare Center for Your Twins

One of the options many parents of twins or multiples may consider when looking for quality daycare is a child or daycare center.

This type of daycare is usually a larger facility and sponsored by an entity, such as independent owners, large name-brand chains, employers, universities or schools.

Many parents prefer this type of arrangement to other types of care because it tends to be more reliable with multiple caregivers present and flexible hours.

You don't need to worry about making other arrangements for your children if your caregiver is sick or has to take a day (or week) off. Or worry about changing a pick up or drop off time if you have to travel and your spouse is dropping off and picking up for a few days.

Some parents also consider daycare centers safer with more staff and children present, licensing requirements and regular state inspections, and, in many cases, a known entity or brand running the facility.

Parents who choose daycare centers also like the structure and learning opportunities these types of centers may offer their children. Children are usually divided by age group so child care providers can provide age-appropriate care and activities.

Daycare centers can often offer a greater number of educational toys and activities that might be difficult to replicate at a home-based daycare arrangement. In some cases, you may be able to expose your child to other activities like dance, ballet, tumbling or special field trips for an additional fee.

Choosing a daycare center though can have some disadvantages. It tends to be more expensive than other daycare options, especially when you have multiple children. It also requires that you pack up your children in the morning and make an additional stop in the morning. . .an added stressor for moms with twins or more.

Some parents may not like the more impersonalized feel of a daycare center since the facility and number of children is larger. In addition, the staff typically plans the day around the needs of the group rather than individual needs. It may be more difficult to get the staff to agree to special requests or arrangements with your children that are outside of their typical routine.

When looking at daycare centers, you may also want to inquire about staff turnover at the facility. While most daycare centers have staff assigned to certain age groups, a high turnover rate could suggest that your child may have less consistency with assigned caregivers on a regular basis.

When researching potential daycare centers, check with your family, friends and neighbors. Your local twins club may also have some ideas. Often you'll find that there are one or two with a great reputation . . .typically the ones that also have a waiting list. That's why you especially need to begin your search early if you think you may want to use a daycare center for child care.

You may also research potential daycare providers on the web. The National Child Care Information Center can provide you with a list of daycare facilities in your area.

Review our list of daycare interview questions. . .

Back to finding quality daycare. . .