Selecting care for your child is one of the most important decisions you'll make. For times when you can't be with your child, you'll want a protective, nurturing person in a stimulating environment. Your child's personality and age have a large bearing on the type of care that's most appropriate. Younger children and infants usually benefit from intensely personal and close relationships with a caregiver. This person should be committed to maintaining the care provider role for as long as possible, preferably several years. This continuity contributes to a child's sense of security and confidence. Until age two and a half or three, the majority of a child's play time is devoted to individual play. This means it isn't necessary for him or her to be exposed to a classroom setting. Another important quality of caregivers is emergency medical knowledge, such as C-P-R, or what to do if a child chokes. Check to make sure individual classroom caregivers or family daycare providers are equipped to deal with these emergencies. Finally, carefully examine the caregiver background for any criminal activity. These checks can be performed through a private agency or possibly your local police force.
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