What does my child do during the day? How did she sleep? Did she eat a lot? How was her mood? Is she going to be wide awake, or dead tired tonight? Childcare daily reports and journals can be a great way to keep track of your infant or child.
As a full-time, working parent, and Type-A mom, I’m sure these questions have crossed your mind. Whether you take your child to daycare, have in-house childcare, or whatever the situation, you want to know what your child does while you’re away all day. It is beneficial for both you and your provider, and will help to ensure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to the health and development of your child.
There are many different ways to report your child’s daily activities. You will want to find one that works for you and your childcare provider. You may even need to try several ways before you find the one that fits you best.
The age of your child will determine the level of detail you need in the report. For example, for small babies you may prefer a list of every diaper change, every feeding (how long, amount eaten, etc.) However, for your toddler you may be less concerned with changed diapers and more concerned with nap times and learning activities.
Don’t forget that the report goes both ways. You’ll want to be sure to provide your care giver with information about your child’s night and morning as well. It is important for your care giver to understand if your child slept well, had a big breakfast, or was fussy on the drive over.
Following are a few ideas to use when determining what will work best for your family.
Childcare Daily Journal
Creating a Daily Journal is a fun/easy way for both you and your provider to keep track of daily activities. This is a less structured format, which may work perfectly for in-house daycare.
Use a simple spiral notepad (nice and inexpensive!) or find a fun journal that matches the baby bag. Either way, start the journal each day with information how your child slept the night before, what she had for breakfast, and perhaps if there will be activities in the evening (to make sure she gets a good nap during the day).
Ask your care giver to keep track of all the things that are important to you throughout the day. Again, this will all depend on your preferences.
Using a calendar is another simple, and inexpensive format. If using a traditional wall hanging calendar there won’t be enough space to get details, but the essential information will be there.
Additionally (and if you’re also a Mom Geek like me) you can use my favorite method, Google Calendar. As long as your daycare provider has internet access during the day, you can set up a calendar on Google and share it. This way, you can actually check in on your child throughout the day!
Make sure to customize the forms to suit your needs. You will need to print these out and make multiple copies, which does take time, money and paper.
Tried and true, having a conversation with your daycare provider on a daily basis will keep you both up-to-date. Whether you use one of the methods listed above or not, talking and listening will be your best bet.
Personally, I have used a combination of these methods as my daughter grows up. I’m also a complete Geek Mom, and am on the computer all day. So emails, text messages, anything of the sort helps keep me, dad and nanny all in contact with each other.
I’d love to hear about some of the ways you keep up with your child’s activities during the day.
Jennifer Sable Lopez is the Development Team Lead and Technical SEO for an online company. She manages multiple blogs, is a sucker for social networking and also writes for and manages momsbyte.com and codejen.com.
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