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Unregistered 08:17 PM 08-05-2012

I'm starting up my own in-home daycare program and I have a couple of questions.

One thing I would really like to do is the occasional "field trip" or trips to the park or beach during nice weather. I would be operating this business by myself and I'm terrified of watching multiple children (including my two own) in the great outdoors. I've looked up a few other in-home daycares that seem to operate with one individual, and they all have photo galleries of numerous outdoor outings. How do you ladies handle this? How do you keep a close eye on all those children by yourself? My greatest fear is a child running off or getting lost!

Also, most competition in my area seems to have a bachelor's degree in childhood education. I do not. I was a full-time babysitter for over six years, teacher's aid for second graders for two years, studied elementary education at a community college for two years (no degree) and am also a loving Mom of two (2 1/2 and a newborn). Do you think my lack of degree will effect my business? Should my rates be significantly lower because of this? I don't want to low ball myself because I feel very qualified to be an in-home provider, but I'm not sure how important having a degree is.

Thank you for any help you can provide!
Blackcat31 06:59 AM 08-06-2012
Hi, I want to invite you to join the forum! It sounds like you have a lot of questions about home child care which is fully understandable and I am sure there are many many members here who can help answer all those questions for you.

If you become a member you will not have to wait for your posts to be moderated and you will also be able to access our Off-Topic section where providers from all sorts of early childhood settings chat and make friends, offer support and advice to one another about a wide variety of topics.

I also suggest that you spend some time reading threads in the forum as many threads have addresses the very things you are wondering about.

There is no one right anwer for how providers manage field trips/outings as you need to do what you are comfortable with and for some providers that is two or three kids whereas other providers handle a dozen kids with no issues.

As far as your not having a degree, that is both a positive and a negative depending on what type of program you want to run and what the "norm" is for your area. ALL areas of the contry vary greatly in terms of education requirements of providers, need and want of parents searching for care, rates and services offered.

Hope that helps answer a few of your questions.
sweetiejen 10:28 AM 08-06-2012
Hi there!

I did register, so not sure why I'm coming up as Guest?

Thanks for replying!
winecountrydaycaregal 11:28 AM 08-06-2012
Hi, congrats on starting your business. I have been in childcare for 16 years now. For field trips, i do not do them. i too am terrified of watching 6 kids and for me, it's not worth it. I do lots of outside time in my own yard.
I do not think having a degree makes you a better provider. Love and structure are what's important.
good luck.
mbullette 11:50 AM 08-06-2012
I have been doing this for 3 years and I do not take field trips or travel with the kids. There is to much of a liability issue. With one adult and numerous little kids its just a disaster waiting to happen. A walk around the block can be a field trip.You can look at flowers, trees, leaves and other things.

Good luck if you decide to take them but I wouldn't!!
Blackcat31 11:50 AM 08-06-2012
Originally Posted by sweetiejen:
Hi there!

I did register, so not sure why I'm coming up as Guest?

Thanks for replying!
Your status has now been upgraded so you can post freely
EntropyControlSpecialist 11:51 AM 08-06-2012

I have 10 kids currently, but have had 12. We walk to the park. Everybody picks a buddy to hold hands with and we discuss the rules before we go.
"Do we run to the park?"
"We use our walking feet!"
"Do you go by yourself?"
"We stay with our buddy!"

We run in the field by the park, but do not run to the park. This keeps us in a big buddy cluster. Sometimes, buddies will link up and there will be a line of 4-6 children.
We do not go on field trips. I don't transport the children at all by car.

I have an ECE degree and while this influenced 2 families to come here, it does not seem to matter much to the others.
MsMe 12:35 PM 08-06-2012
Welcome to the world of Daycare!

I am a two provider home so we have 14 or 8 alone.

I feel confident taking 8 walking to a park, library, or lunch. I have a walking rope from Lakeshore (BEST THING EVER!!!)

Have you cared for a group of children before? Many parents and friends ask me 'how' I do it..caring for a group of chidren just comes very naturally to me. I think many of the providers here will tell you the same thing. I don't feel uncomfortable or scared at all to take them out into the world. I know I can handle all of them saftly. My advice is to take it slow. See how it goes at home, then short walks and as you feel comfortable expand....don't take on more than you can handle too soon....don't set yourself up to 'fail'. You could even have a helper that can go with you in the beginning!?

Some people work in an office, some in a factory, and EWW dentisits work IN peoples mouths!! yuk! yuk! Everyone has a strength and ours is keeping track of a half dozen kids and more when sometimes their parents can't even manage one

Stick around and ask for all teh help you need. Daycare can be overwhelming and sometimes lonely ....
sweetiejen 10:15 PM 08-06-2012
Thank you all for replying!

I'm glad it's not completely necessary to go on trips. I was also wondering about transportation and how that was possible with so many kids, especially if most of them are still in car seats! Our crossover vehicle barely fits our family of four!

I think it will take time for me to get more comfortable for park dates, but I like the idea of a buddy system. I guess it just comes with practice.

Thanks again!
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