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What do you do for childcare for 11 year olds?

(38 Posts)
MiddleAgedMother Thu 26-Oct-17 20:52:04

Planning for my youngest DD’s move to secondary school. The older DCs will have left home by then and the earliest either DH or I can home is 6pm/7pm sometimes later.

DD will be home by 430.

What do people do for childcare?

Temporaryanonymity Thu 26-Oct-17 20:54:13

DS is year 6. He lets himself in, watches youtube and waits for me to get home, usually no later than 6pm.

kimlo Thu 26-Oct-17 20:55:27

dd1 came home herself, and dd2 will do the same when she is that age. I get home normally at about 6.

Half 4 is the time she gets in if she comes straight from school. It's later than that if she goes to a club after school or goes to a friends house.

Cat0115 Thu 26-Oct-17 20:58:04

Just started to sort tbis now for DS starting school in September (y7). We live in the town in which he will attend secondary school but DH and I work in two different towns 25 and 50 miles away. I am going to ask a neighbour to be available next door on one or two days a week and then pay a childminder in town from 4pm to 6pm (supper and homework supervision)for the other three. He can walk home on his own as the town is small and well lit. We will be home ariund 6ish most eves.

museumum Thu 26-Oct-17 21:04:13

What has your childcare been before now? Our afterschool clubs are only open till 5:45 so we have arranged to take turns getting home at that time - this will continue at secondary so ds only alone 1-1:15hr

MiddleAgedMother Thu 26-Oct-17 21:15:08

Years of nannies and for the last year or so live in au pairs.

But for secondary school it seems too much - no school run to do just to be there for 1.5hrs a day, prepping supper?

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Thu 26-Oct-17 21:22:08

That is difficult, my DS is in yr 7 and now lets himself in, though 3 days he is only on his own for half an hour and for 2 hours on the other 2 days. Could you maybe find a suitable 6th former or student or similar to pay to be there for an hour or two every day and keep her company? I know our occasional weekend babysitter would love an arrangement like this as she could sit and get paid do her homework!

KissesAX Thu 26-Oct-17 21:26:23

I think once secondary school age and travelling to and from school on their own they are perfectly fine to be home alone after school till parents get home if no later than 6/7

milkysmum Thu 26-Oct-17 21:31:08

My owm are younger so in after school clubs but most friends with children this age just have them ket themselves in for and be home watching tv/ doing homework etc for a couple of hours until they get in.

Phineyj Thu 26-Oct-17 21:34:13

If you really feel they can't spend a couple of hours on their own, they could perhaps stay and do homework in the library at school for some of the time? Or maybe go to a friend's on occasion if you will be very late. 'Childcare' seems odd at this age when they are getting more independent. If you mean Sept 2018, you've lots of time to work up to it.

Doggington Thu 26-Oct-17 21:36:24

Might she do quite a few after school activities? My 11 year old finishes school at 4 but three days a week stays at school until 6 doing sport/music/drama. That would mean many fewer hours home alone.

BackforGood Thu 26-Oct-17 21:36:53

I've had 3 start secondary. All fairly mature, and I'm generally fairly relaxed, but I think it is too much for an 11 yr old to let themselves in and then be on their own until after dark, day in, day out. No problem at all on the odd occasion, or once a week, or daily for an hour but i think the length and regularity are too much.

cheminotte Thu 26-Oct-17 21:41:13

Can you and / or DH adjust your hours so he's not alone every night?
DS is in y6 and cycles home alone occasionally. He's pushing to do it when there's no one there, that will be next. Have a younger DC so am home 5.30 at latest but 4 twice a week.

MiddleAgedMother Thu 26-Oct-17 21:55:12

No. I wish I could, but I can’t shorten my hours as I have a long commute so it’s a struggle to be home by 6pm. Easier for DH unless he’s away with business.

We do make sure we never travel at the same time.

A student would be a good idea if I could find one.

But maybe another year of au pair?

At what age do you find that the DC can be on their own? (Never applicable with older DC as we always had nanny or au pair for youngest in the house.)

cheminotte Thu 26-Oct-17 22:14:08

I'm leaving dc1 alone for up to 1/2 hour now, so I think 1- 2 should be ok in a year. But like pp I don't want it to be every evening.
When ds1 had a childminder before he started school, she had a Y7 neighbour who popped in after school.

cheminotte Thu 26-Oct-17 22:14:46

Is wfh ever an option for or either of you?

WeAllHaveWings Thu 26-Oct-17 22:33:34

Ds(13) has been coming home from school himself, or left alone for occasional 1/2 days during school holidays just this year. I wouldn’t have felt comfortable with that at 11, I felt better at 12, but dh wasn’t comfortable at 12, so it’s only been fairly recent.

Every child and parent is different.

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Thu 26-Oct-17 22:39:46

Another year or so of au pair might make the transition easier- we've found it quite hard due to the extra level of organisation needed, despite DS being fairly sensible and generally easy-going. He has come on in leaps and bounds though and I suspect by next September I would be less concerned about him being alone for longer every evening.

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Thu 26-Oct-17 22:42:23

cheminotte funny enough a childminder is my 'threat' if DS doesn't do what I've asked after school (no friends in unless by prior arrangement, etc.) grin

Thedoghasfleas Thu 26-Oct-17 22:43:50

Didn’t leave mine home alone after school until at least 13.5
Just didn’t think it was fair really plus we live in quite a rural and isolated place with no neighbours if they needed an adult
I may have felt differently if we were on a street of other houses.

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Thu 26-Oct-17 22:49:15

Yes I think rural location would be quite different. We do have various other people not that far away plus between several neighbours with small children there is usually one around who I'm sure would help if needed. My experience has been that I've been fairly clear that DS was 'ready' for each stage- if I've had doubts I've assumed he wasn't. So far he's not pushed extra but I'm sure that will come as he gets to his teens

NoMoreAngstPls Thu 26-Oct-17 22:55:19

My 11yo is alone from 3.30-5.30 ish, 3 days a week and until 4ish on 2 weekdays.
She moans about being board, but its fine really. And now she has a few school clubs til 4.30.

NoMoreAngstPls Thu 26-Oct-17 22:56:36

Bored not boardblush

Topseyt Thu 26-Oct-17 23:04:46

I wouldn't have thought being home alone for an hour and a half each weekday would be beyond most 11 year olds.

I guess it does possibly depend on the child though. Only you know him and how he is likely to react.

RhinestoneCowgirl Thu 26-Oct-17 23:09:24

DS has just started yr 7 and is home alone 2 afternoons a week as his younger sister is at after school club. He walks home from school and has his own key. I think he quite likes the peace. He tends to get a snack, do homework, play on the Xbox. He knows he can call me if he needs to, or call on our neighbour if there's a problem.

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