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What do you think are must have items for home daycare? When I asked the question to a bunch of providers, I got a lot of interesting answers. Running a home daycare is not as simple as it sounds.
Some providers said things like kids, art supplies, toys, books, songs, baby gates, reading glasses, cell phones, computers, sharpie markers, printers, copiers, baby wipes, Lysol wipes, magic erasers, cheerios, bleach, and things like that. Those are for sure must-have items for home daycare. I mean, what would we be doing if we didn’t have kids? And check out the home daycare regulations that everyone needs to start with here.
Some other providers mentioned things like good parents to work for as must have items for home daycare. That is a must for sure! Naptime was another favorite and I agree the day would be tough without quiet time! It’s a super long day. I’m not sure I could make it without that break in the middle.
Norwex cloths for chemical-free cleaning, an indoor slide, ibuprofen, essential oils (thieves particularly) Pandora Kid’s station and other creature comforts were mentioned as well. These things certainly do make our jobs easier to do.
A few other providers mentioned things that would be really cool to have like gymnastics mats, strollers, changing table (mine saves my back for sure!), pressure cooker, microwave, floor cleaner, crockpot, baby swing and other equipment pieces that make our lives bearable. These things are wonderful blessings!
Some people thought of different, more specialized equipment such as a bright flashlight to check for head lice (I think it’s a must!), pampered chef food chopper, handheld cordless vacuum, steamer and carpet cleaner. All of these are great suggestions as well.
Obviously, you can live without anything but air, water and food, right? We wouldn’t be providers without kids, but other than that, we can provide care without any of these things, can’t we? I sure don’t want to find out!
Here are some more serious must have items for a home daycare. It’s VERY important for a provider to have a contract. Click here to see how to go about planning it. If you want your business to be a professional business, you really do need to set it up in a businesslike manner. Make sure your contract is one of the first things you take care of.
Would you be interested to know that the top most popular thing providers said childcare providers can’t live without is COFFEE. Can you relate to that? I don’t drink any caffeine and I can’t stand coffee, so for me, this is not the case, but it is a very popular answer among many vocations, I’m sure.
Personally, I would not want to live without a few daycare items. These things include my new grape cutter, a laminator, pizza cutter, kitchen scissors, power drill (this can come in so handy!) and the world’s greatest tape to keep things on any type of wall surface, Mavalous tape!
And check out these room and playground ideas too.
Other things I find extremely useful include Tom Copeland and his resources, my annual Calendar Keeper to keep all of my information together and handy.
There are many great must have items for a home daycare. Well, maybe you can, but they will enhance your childcare time because they are great resources. A helper would be a great asset to anyone providing childcare. I would love to have one for sure, but I don’t. Another thing that helps tremendously is Facebook groups. One of my favorites is I Daycare So Hard! because it’s a really positive group of providers that don’t like a lot of drama.
There are many other really good ones as well. Just type in the Facebook search daycare or childcare. You can get tons of advice, support and wonderful ideas from Facebook groups. Another wonderful resource online is Pinterest. It’s full of great ideas and information.
Home daycare must haves
The best thing a provider can have, hands down, that is a huge blessing is a great friend (co-worker) to laugh with, vent to and keep each other encouraged. I talk to mine on the phone during nap while we do paperwork or make daycare plans and it’s such a blessing in my life! This can really help you keep from burning out. Click here to see more ways to prevent burn out in childcare.
Several things that were mentioned as must have items for home daycare were super important and I love all of these. Fresh air is super important for providers and kids. I would recommend everyone get this every day. Prayer was another good one that I’m not sure how anyone lives without.
Health is vital for home daycare
Healthy food to give you energy is a must! If you are tired and slumping through your days, consider checking out your diet and what you are eating. It can make a huge difference. Before I started eating healthy a few years back, I could barely make it through each day. It’s amazing the difference when I eat lots of fruits and veggies and limit processed foods.
Someone mentioned a sense of humor is a thing child care providers can’t live without. I would have to agree with this. You’re going to have to laugh some things off to break the stress of how much this job requires of you. It helps your mental health tremendously as well. Laughing is good medicine! Not only that, but it makes your day and your kid’s day fun if you can joke around a little bit.
Fun is essential for home daycare
If you listen to your kids, you will have plenty of material for some giggles. We had a teddy bear picnic this week and on Monday, one of my parents asked as she was leaving, tomorrow is the teddy bear picnic, right? I said, yes, don’t forget your stuffed animals. A kid turned around and told her, grown-ups can’t come to this picnic, ya know. He really thought she didn’t know it was for kids only. We just cracked up!
The best answer I got when I asked providers what they can’t live without is a rocking chair and open arms. I love that so much. There is nothing more true. Our willingness to care for these kids is the most important thing. Our kids need our heart. The care we give is vitally important. Good food, hand washing, quiet places to rest and those types of things are super important, but our care for what we do is irreplaceable. Kids need us to LOVE them.