Education, Parenting, and Homeschooling

Daycare: What Do Our Kids Do All Day?

Working parents have only so many options. I know, I’ve been there and I am there.

If you’re fortunate enough to stay home with your children and do the most important job any of us is ever tasked with- raising the next generation- then God Bless You.

But if you’re like most American families, one if not both parents, are now working outside the home.

It is what it is. Inflation. Rising costs of everything, from housing, to school, to gas for your car, and don’t even get me started on insurance.

So again, most of us have to, not necessarily want to, but HAVE to drop our child off at a child development center.

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A.k.a Daycare.

So what do they do all day?

Kids in daycare.

Well, in case you’re curious, most of these development centers have schedules. Oh yes.

As I was going through my ever increasing stack of “important” papers today, I came across this gem.

Toddlers Daily Schedule.

My two year old, and again, bear in mind, he was TWO when he was on this schedule, is what follows.

6:30-8:00 Open Centers

8:00-8:30 Breakfast

8:30-8:45 Exercise Time (isn’t that all the time for kids?)

8:45-9:00 Morning Circle

900-9:15 Music and Movement

9:15-9:30 Sensory Play

9:30-10:15 Outside Time

10:15-10:30 Story Time

10:30-11:00 Open Centers (yes, again)

11:00-11:30 Lunch

11:30-11:45 Prepare for Nap/Story Time

11:45-1:45 Nap

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1:45-2:00 Clean Up Nap Mats

2:00-2:20 Snack

2:20-3:05 Outside Time

3:05-3:20 Finger Play

3:20-3:30 Music and Movement

3:30-3:40 Sensory Play

3:40-5:40 Open Centers

5:40-5:50 Story Time

5:50-6:00 Closing Circle

6:00-6:30 Table Toys




Did you get all that?

That was for my two year old.

No wonder he was tired and cranky by the time just-as-tired-and-cranky butt pulled into the center to get him after we’d both had a rousing day of interactions with strangers- I mean, coworkers and classmates.


And there’s a lot to be said for schedules. Research points to it being best, for both kids and adults. We like routine. We fear change. We like knowing what’s next.

And this school? The one implementing this schedule?

I liked it well enough. Not one of the absolute best I’ve had to put my kids in, but it served its purpose.

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And due to a high volume of moves over the years with the military, jobs, life in general, we’ve had experience with several centers.

And they don’t all have schedules exactly like this, but all the good ones did indeed have a routine where if I showed up at 9:30am to get a child for an appointment, I knew they’d be on the playground, or eating snack at that time- you get the picture.

In fact, going over this, I will say a lot of centers do breakfast earlier than 8. I know the one I most recently had my kids in did breakfast at 7ish, and I know that because that’s what time I had to drop them off, because I had to be at work by 7:30am. Boom!

So what do you think? Is this typical of what your two year olds do, if you work outside the home? Think it could be improved upon?

Let me know your thoughts.

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