I am a stickler for keeping on schedule. It makes my program run smoothly. It keeps me focused. Not only that this is how I enroll. If I have an opening for 1 child and I have 2 potential clients wanting the spot the early pickup usually always wins.
During interviews I’m clear and precise on how important keeping schedules are. I stress the importance of the courtesy and respect of notification as soon as a change to the schedule is made. There is no alterations in my schedule. There is no make up of projects. After all you don’t ask the elementary school to reschedule your child’s lunch because you are going to be late.
We all know that kids who stay attentive and focused have a greater chance of succeeding in life. To be honest it’s not the child’s fault they can’t get to daycare on schedule. They can’t drive.
As parents we lead by example. If we act like appointments and schedules don’t matter your child won’t care either. If the parent is late for everything chances are the kids won’t be too concerned with the clock either.
I like being on schedule. However my schedule for events means I’m going to be in the parking lot early. In fact I’m probably going to be one of the first. I’ve done my share of helping set up meetings just because I was early somewhere. I absolutely would rather skip going anywhere than walk in late.
With this in mind parents need to let Providers know as soon as they know if they are going to be late, if they are going to be absent or picked up early. Providers need to know due to art and preschool supplies, field trips, and meal planning. Especially with meal planning. We can’t have too much or too little. There’s nothing more aggravating to a Provider as having to add extra to a recipe to stretch it or throw too much away because we made too much.
I know there are those that are thinking “you just don’t understand.” Oh believe me I do. I have kids. I’ve had the kid that never could find their shoes. I’ve had the kid that just couldn’t get their act together. Ive experiences the drier that didn’t heat, car that wouldn’t start and the lost appointment card.
I learned to prepare. I kept spare shoes and clothes in the car. I learned baths and clothes laid out the night before was a time saver. I learned to make lots of lists of everything needed to be done. I learned to schedule my trips to fill the tank. I learned to make lunches or clip coupons and set money aside for lunch with my bag and keys. I learned to set the alarm a couple hours before I have to leave so everything’s done. I learned to unplug curling irons, blow driers and anything else that is a potential hazard as soon as I’m done. I’ve learned to put things in their “home” so I know where to locate it. I also learned to carry a little health care bag in my purse so I know where everything is. Meds, tooth brush, tooth paste, deodorant, hand sanitizer, wipes, tissue, band aids and nail clippers. Yes it fits in my purse. No my purse is not huge. Yes it’s very organized. I’ve learned to have a central office center. My iPhone, my small assignment book, pens, high lighter, sticky notes and pouch for appointment cards. It all fits in my purse. I set alarms on my phone for everything. My goal is the task to be completed by the time the music plays. to do lists- every morning I make a to do list and try to complete it. I learned making grocery lists and only going in those aisles made a huge difference. I’ve learned to ask at pick up the arrival schedule for the next day. the biggest time saver- organization. Quit spending valuable time hunting things.
Let your parents know how valuable your time is and promptness is appreciated. It’s not just about you as a Providers free time. It’s about having less time waiting on kids and more time on activities with the kids. Let them Know schedules is an important part of your program. It’s a teaching tool.