Are you a parent considering grandparent childcare? Approximately one-fourth of children younger than 5 are in the hands of grandparents. Given the high costs of childcare, it is no surprise that so many parents are turning to relatives for childcare. Many parents appreciate that they know exactly who will be caring for their children and the kind of care the children will receive.
Here are a few of the highlighted benefits of grandparent childcare:
❉ Grandparent childcare is an opportunity for children to build attachments to grandparents, which has health and development benefits for children.
❉ Time with grandchildren can be energizing and give grandparents an opportunity to “see the world through new eyes.”
❉ Grandparents can play an important role in minimizing “some of the pressure parents experience in this fast-paced world.”
And, here are some of Dr. Marti’s tips for making things go smoothly:
❉ Consider your compatibility with the grandchildren’s parents as far as childrearing values, practices (such as discipline or nutrition), and beliefs. And, be sure you’re physically up to the task.
❉ Remember that ultimately the parents are in charge.
❉ Present a “united front” to the grandchildren.
❉ Have open communication, with emphasis on listening and gathering information. “And be willing to learn together, reaching out to credible sources for information on child development and effective parenting — so you all are figuring out together how to support the children’s healthy development,” said Dr. Marti Erickson.
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