Skip to main content

In praise of our Family Day Care

It’s no secret that I adore the Family Day Care we send Nathan to on my work days. It’s a small-scale home-based day care where the carer takes in only a maximum of four kids per day.

I never liked the idea of dumping my kid in a crowd of children at conventional day care centres with typical institutional issues like staff turnover. My own personal experiences with early childhood education as a little girl were far from ideal. I still have vivid memories of being bullied and taunted by other children from the age of 3-4.

Some supporting information from the FDCA factsheet:

The family day care home environment focuses on the connection to the natural world and the interconnection between people, places, animals and the community. Homes are places to explore, interact, discuss, express, involve, relax, connect, engage and be safe.

Current early year’s brain research confirms that the single most important element in stimulating a child’s learning is strong relationships with significant adults – family day care’s small group care enables children to build those bonds that are so critical to their early learning and social development.

I love the fact that Nathan is being looked after in a very close knit setting, where he can get plenty of one-on-one attention from the carer, who absolutely adores him (I’ve seen her pick him up and cuddle and kiss him affectionately). I know he likes her too as he can already say her name and he repeats it excitedly whenever I announce that we are going to her house.

And because it’s a small group, he is learning to develop real friendships with the other children there… at just one and a half years old, he can already tell me the names of a couple of his favourite friends in the group.

It might take some trial and error to find a carer you are comfortable with, but once you find the right one, you’ll be singing their praises all the time.

Our carer is extremely diligent with doing plenty of projects and craft activities with the children. More so, I think, than many conventional day care centres.

DSC02046Almost every week, Nathan will come home with a piece of art to add to his portfolio.

This is a colour matching exercise they did with feathers.

After this activity, Nathan was able, for the first time, to point out the colour ‘blue’ – an example of the sort of ground-breaking stuff he’s learning all the time there.

Our carer also came up with a lentil craft activity for the kids to practice their fine motor skills…

DSC02050Here is the excerpt from her notes notes on the activity:

We did craft with lentils, Nathan tried to pick up every single piece and put it in the circle, he successfully picked up almost all without help

Another time for fun, she got the kids to make their own set of thongs from cardboard.

Nathan was too young to make them himself but the other kids eagerly pitched in to help trace his little feet and decorate the mini thongs for him.

DSC02045“All the other kids had fun making one for Nathan, though it is not his artwork I’m sure mum & dad would love this outline of his tiny feet for remembrance”

A recent big project they did was to do their own family tree.

She emailed all the parents in advanced to ask for photos and the mother tongue terms for each family member.

Here are her notes on the activity she sent to the parents afterwards:

DSC02044“I would like to thank you all for participating in family tree activity.

It was really interesting for me to see the family photos and specially the feeling of pride of being valued and connected that I observed in each child while making their family tree and showing it to their friends.

I really appreciate your cooperation for helping me to build their self esteem”


She also sends us photos of Nathan at day care which I really appreciate. Instead of a blank of the days I send him in, the photos give me visual insight on what he gets up to when he’s with her and the other kids there…

image image image

And the personal relationship extends beyond just the hours at day care.

imageHere’s an e-card she sent during the time Nathan was recovering from his major lip-laceration accident:

“Dear Nathan
We miss you, get well soon
With best wishes  and love
from all your friends”


And the food… oh my! Nothing beats home-cooked food, and it helps that our carer’s husband happens to be a head chef at a prominent Indian restaurant in Fremantle. Some of the items on the menu Nathan had the privilege of enjoying include:

  • Cottage cheese stuffed pratha with red kidney beans curry
  • Moong dhal with carrots and rice
  • Lentil and corn stew with fresh yoghurt
  • Spinach, cottage cheese and potato patties
  • Chickpea curry with chapatti

Our Family Day Care really is another home-away-from-home for Nathan. And with a great carer like ours not only makes it easier to part from Nathan for the day whenever I go to work, but it’s really a day to look forward to where Nathan can play with his friends and do lots of fun activities.

So if you ask me what child care options I would recommend, you know what my answer is.

More information on Family Day Care in Australia:


  1. Glad you found a really good day care for your child. I do agree, it's not an easy task selecting from a wide range of choices but once you found, you would be over the moon if they are great. We know how many child care out there is inexperienced and irresponsible.


Post a Comment

Thanks for taking the time to comment - I love reading every single one of them! Although I may not be able to reply to each comment, I will definitely pop over to your blog to say hello.

I love hearing from readers and fellow bloggers alike. If you're a little shy or would like to get in touch with me directly, drop me an email at

Popular posts from this blog

An impossible cake

Every now and then, mamas  crave for something sinful and sweet… preferably with a touch of chocolate. Running after a toddler and breastfeeding a baby is really hungry work. I’m not really the sort of person who has their fridge and pantry stocked up with junk food and sweets. But I usually have all the basic ingredients on hand to whip up an indulgent treat when the craving hits.One evening I found myself longing for a bite of some chocolate cake… however being the end of the week, I was out of some core ingredients. Butter. Eggs. Milk. All necessary elements required to make a decent cake. Or so I thought.Then I found this impossible recipe. A cake with no butter, eggs and milk. They’re calling it Crazy Cake. Because you have to be crazy NOT to try it.It’s soooo easy to make, no creaming butter and sugar or electric mixers required. Apparently it can even be mixed together straight in the baking pan, no bowls necessary.Crazy CakeIngredients
1 1/2 cups plain flour
3 tbsp. cocoa
1 cup…

How I use traditional muslin cloths as nappies

This post is for the benefit of my friend Stephanie who has recently made the decision to take the plunge into cloth diapering. She bought a few pieces of MCNs and is expecting a package of two dozen muslin flats. Although I've collected a good stash of modern cloth diapers, muslin flats still form a key part of my cloth diapering system. When I first started using this, I was a little dubious about the absorption power of this seemingly flimsy material. But it’s quite surprising how well it performs… and for such a small cost (sometimes free as these are commonly received as a gift from loving friends/relatives) it’s by far the most economical way to diaper a baby. The first fold I used was the traditional Chinese or Origami fold:

Unfortunately for me, I found that it didn’t hold up very well as my son is a rather heavy wetter and I had yet to discover the use of nappy covers. My other complaint about this fold is that the fold is not really concentrated around the main wetting area.…

Homemade Snowskin Mooncakes

It’s mooncake festival this month. Stores have started selling mooncakes since early August and we’ve succumbed to buying one or two cakes when we were out shopping.This year I decided to venture to make my own mooncakes. After some research and scouting various recipes, I settled on making snowskin mooncakes. Mainly because I like them and they are rather hard to find in Perth… and because the recipe is actually a bit easier than the conventional baked version.I found this recipe on to be the best one as it had detailed photos explaining the various ingredients and process.Here is my version of the recipe…For the homemade filling, I made three different types: red bean, black sesame, and a nutella flavoured one. All the filings start with a base of red bean paste.First step is to prepare the red bean paste: Soak 1kg of red azuki beans in water overnight.Image from wikipediaThe next day, transfer the beans into a pot, cover with water and cook until beans are soft. I used m…

7 things I miss about babywearing + {giveaway}

Last Sunday we headed out on one of our favourite weekend activities: flea market shopping! I just love exploring these markets and get a real kick out of finding great bargains and treasures from other people’s junk. We set off bright and early that morning so we could catch all the good bargains. It was only after we arrived there that we realised that we had forgotten to bring Nathan’s stroller! So we ended up taking turns carrying him and letting him toddle around a bit whenever we stopped at a stall.The weather was getting pretty hot and Nathan was starting to get tired. Thankfully I keep a spare pouch sling in the car, so we got it out and I slung Nathan on against my hip so we could continue exploring the market.The sling certainly made the job of carrying him a little easier. Still, carrying a 12kg toddler is no walk in the park. But as he leaned his tired head against my shoulder and snuggled against me to get more comfortable, it brought back memories of my babywearing days

Jumperoo review is out

For while now I’ve been contemplating getting a activity centre or a doorway jumper for my son who’s now into his 9th month. He’s been getting increasingly active as the days go by with an insane amount of energy to burn.

I considered getting a walker or doorway jumper, but was concerned over safety issues with such items highlighted in Choice magazine’s list of Ten Things Not to Buy Your Kids. Hence stationary activity centres appear to be the safer alternative for what I was after.

So when Fisher-Price gave me the opportunity to review their Luv U Zoo Jumperoo, I was thrilled. My official review has been published on the Bub Hub Reviews section which you can check out here or read below:Jumperoo - the perfect hybrid between activity centres and baby jumpersI was impressed that the Jumperoo was not just a static activity centre, but doubled up as a baby jumper as well, which is a safer option to doorway jumpers. It’s the perfect hybrid solution between activity centres and baby jumpers…