hi there, we are relocating, and have found a new childminder who has one child of her own. She has announced that her son goes to judo class once a week (middle of the day on a weekday). The class is for 45mins and it's a half hour drive away. She has asked if we would like to join my son in the class, and has said that if not she will take some activities for my son to do while he waits and watches. Is this a bit odd? I have no problem with childminders fitting my children in with their everyday life in terms of going to shops, doctors etc, but it seems to show a lack of empathy for the child that is going to have to sit and watch (we can't afford the lesson fee on top of childcare costs). Or do you think this is ok? Genuinely looking for opinions as can no longer see the wood for the trees, thank you.
Quite normal to me. Have used 4 Childminders over the years and all did this to some degree either with own children or other mindees . Upside is that when your child is old enough to domain activity the childminder will probably take him along and others will watch. What goes around comes around etc. also it exposes your child to new things that they may enjoy. One of mine took up dancing after a year of watching another DCs lessons.
I would find this perfectly ok for a childminder to do this and have used a childminder for the last 6 years who had to balance the care of my children, other children and her own children. Often this is to the benefit of my children but they cannot, by the nature of our arrangement, be first in her priorities at all times. It seems time that she is I offering 1-to-1 interaction with your child during the activity so maybe the journey time is more of an issue? Obviously you are paying for a service here and if you are unhappy could mention it but equally, if it is non-negotiable for this childminder you will need to look for another more suitable childcare option.
not odd or selfish - at least she has given you pre-warning as well and given you options. I have to drop my child to classes twice a week - if I am working the children have to come with me, although I don't wait as there is nothing to see, however I used to take mindees with me to child's gymnastic class.. the mindees now join in.
its a short 45 minute session where your child will still be cared for and entertained. He will still be learning about patience when others are doing things etc.
Well, just an idea but if your son were to participate in the class she wouldn't still be minding him for that hour.. Maybe see if your don't pay her for that hour and that might cover the costs for your son to participate.
thanks. I'm not happy with it - have told her gently and asked if she can try to rearrange it for a day when she's not working, but she says she can't. Going to have to re-discuss. He is only 4 and I think he's going to feel pretty left out and excluded.
If he is going to have 45 minutes of 'shh' and 'sit still' then this is not a particularly child-centred way of spending his time. Or do you think it will genuinely be an enjoyable opportunity for 1-1 in a new place?
On the other hand, if it is just once a week and you are very happy with her in other respects, then maybe say yes and see how it goes...
Agree with pippin and petherwyn. Your child can't be the focus all the time. They learn patience and that everyone has different interests etc. and they won't be doing nothing, some colouring, reading a book, chatting to the CM, having a snack, all quite acceptable and necessary skills that you would have to develop in your DC anyway such when waiting in a cafe or doctors etc. I think it's just a normal part of life to have to wait for others from time to time.
real mix of views! I guess at the end of the day if I'm not happy with it, it maybe means we're not a good fit for each other, as have different attitudes to stuff.
I just think he'll feel left out. I would feel sorry for a child that had to sit and watch from the sidelines, and I personally wouldn't put a child that was new to my care through that, but maybe I'm a bit over sensitive!
I think it is ok actualy. It's a 45 min class. I don't think that he will see himself as being excluded. It will help him learn to be patient and that the world doesn't revolve round him, although he will have the childminder exclusively for the 45 mins as her child will be doing other things.
If you are otherwise happy with her I would let this go.
So a professional woman running her own business has presumably shown you around her setting,( copies of her policies and procedures) and also been upfront with you about a commitment she has to her own child.
The way I would look at it is if you we're at home with siblings this would be the norm. Ok the first couple if weeks may be difficult for your DS to settle and understand its just time to colour or whatever but after that it will be his norm