18 month old cared for at home - is daycare necessary for socialization?

Samantha - posted on 05/01/2012 ( 12 moms have responded )

5

0

0

My son is 18 months old and cared for in our home by my mom. He is enrolled in baby gym classes and has a playdate once a week. Is this enought socialization for this age or would it be beneficial to put him in daycare part time just to get some separation time and to meet babies his age? Thanks!

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Janice - posted on 05/01/2012

1,890

18

63

I worked in daycare before becoming a SAHM and I have my BS in early childhood education. At 18 months a child doesn't need a lot of socialization. Baby gym classes and a weekly play date are fine. Being in daycare won't hurt a child but it is not necessary.

At 18 months playing with others is not a child's main focus. They are too busy just discovering everything and really are not able to engage in cooperative play with another child. In toddler rooms at day cares there are usually 2 or more of every toy. This is because it is not developmentally appropriate to expect toddlers to share and take turns all day. Mostly at 18-30 months children are engaged in parallel play which means they are playing with the same or similar toys next to each other but the interaction is minimal.
I do think it is good for toddlers to have some time to interact with others their age but it sounds like you are already doing that.

I think if you have the option then waiting till a child is 2.5 or older to start daycare is best.

12 Comments

View replies by

Audra - posted on 05/03/2012

167

19

8

It's possible to OVERschedule young children, and they need a degree of routine and consistency in their schedule. The baby gym classes, combined with the weekly playdate seems like plenty, to me.

Annaleigh - posted on 05/02/2012

113

19

15

If you only tke him grocery shopping with you that is enough interaction. Babies don't NEED to interact with babies their own age, they actually do better in a varied age group setting, like a family. Don't stress it.

[deleted account]

As long as he has regular experience interacting with other kids his age then I would say he's good. Sounds like you and your mom are doing good by having him in a baby gym class and a playdate

Vicki - posted on 05/02/2012

1,150

0

166

Yeah agree with the others. Socialisation at this age isn't necessary. My boy will be 3 in July, I was at home with him until 18 months and after that my Mum has had him twice a week when I work. We have lots activities like a couple of playgroups and he plays with his cousin about once a week. He doesn't have any trouble playing with other kids when the opportunity arises. The last few months he's been going to the gym creche and had no problems there at all.

Janice - posted on 05/01/2012

1,890

18

63

Samantha, your son doesn't necessarily need to play with other boys. Girls are just fine :) My daughter is 2.5 and most of her play dates are with my friends' boys although she also plays with her girl cousins too.
I would see if your mom can take your son to places where there are other children once or twice a week. There is a place near my home called tumbling tykes which holds classes (I've never done them though) and has free play for any toddler in their indoor play area. It is great! You should check and see if there is a place like that near you. Also when its nice out she could try the park. The park closest to me is not busy, but I drive 12 minutes away and there is a busy park with lots of socialization opportunities.

I really wouldn't stress out about too much though :)

Amy - posted on 05/01/2012

6,467

33

2386

My oldest son wasn't an official program till he started pre-school when he was 4. Prior to that we did story hour once a week at the library, he was enrolled in Tae Kwon do, and at the age of 3 he went to a open gym once a week. He adjusted just fine in pre-k and kindergarten, I don't believe a child needs to go to daycare for "socialization" as long as you do activities with them.

Samantha - posted on 05/01/2012

5

0

0

Thanks so much for the response Janice! I agree with you and am glad to hear that I'm not holding Owen back by not having him in a structured day care program. I do worry that he doesn't interact with kids enough though and since I work I can't go to mommy and me classes or playgroups during the week. Gym is just 1 hour and we don't have any little boys for him to play with - my friends all have girls. I was thinking of taking him to the gym for an extra class each week. Any other suggestions?

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms