Dear Mr. Dad,
My wife and I are shopping around for day care. How can we tell if the facility will offer the proper care?
Finding a quality daycare center or provider can be incredibly stressful. Here are just a few things to look for in a day-care center:
Before you make your final choice, be sure to take a tour. Spend half an hour or so-when all the kids are there-observing. Are the children happy? Are they doing the kinds of activities you expected?
Finally, in the weeks after you pick the perfect day-care center, make a few unannounced visits -- just to see what goes on when there aren't any parents around.
-- "Mr. Dad"
A nationally recognized parenting expert, Armin Brott is the author of The Expectant Father: Facts, Tips and Advice for Dads-To-Be, The New Father: A Dad's Guide to the First Year, The New Father: A Dad's Guide to the Toddler Years, Throwaway Dads: The Myths and Barriers That Keep Men from Being the Fathers They Want to Be, and The Single Father: A Dad's Guide to Parenting Without a Partner (New Father Series). He has written on parenting and fatherhood for the New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, Newsweek and dozens of other periodicals. He also hosts "Positive Parenting," a nationally distributed, weekly talk show, and lives with his family in Oakland, California.