Starting from the day your baby is born, you know that he/she will change your life and that of your family. You start to develop a strong bond with your baby and you make plans for his/her future.
For working mums, part of your planning includes the fact that your maternity leave will end at some point and you would have to weigh the best infant care options that suit you, your child and your family.
Why Infant Care?
Given a choice, you would love to prolong the time you spend bonding with your baby, rather than to put him/her in the care of a suitable caregiver. Some of us might have grandparents or a domestic helper to care for our little ones, but for others who do not an infant care centre in Singapore may be the best choice.
One of the most common misconceptions of parents is that caring for a baby does not require much effort or fancy materials. After all, you have seen your little one delight in watching a few toys dangle over his/her face. So why should one pay to put baby in an infant care for a day of “babysitting”?
An important aspect that most people overlook due to this misconception is that there are skills an infant can develop with the right guidance and stimulation. Thus, having your baby in a specially designed environment for infants can be beneficial.
What Skills Can Your Baby Pick Up from an Infant Care Centre in Singapore
You might not know this, but social interaction in babies start from the first year. By learning to take turns in an infant care environment, babies learn to develop patience and respect towards others by not snatching items from another baby’s grasp.
The art of observing how other infants respond to their surroundings is another great skill that your baby will pick up. During the first years, babies use observation as a form of communication as they discover their connection with people and their environment.
Infants are really into observing facial expressions too as that is how they pick up social cues. When they are being cuddled or spoken to, notice how they learn to mimic their caregiver’s expressions and decipher simply cues:
- A smile and words spoken in a high-pitched tone equates to happiness
- A frown with a low-pitched tone signals frustration
2. Fine Motor and Visual Cognition
When your baby learns to hold a toy in his/her hands, this seemingly simple task is actually a huge learning curve. This, along with simple gestures such as holding their hands together, mastering the pincer grasp and stacking blocks, are milestones that infants need to cross in their development.
It is also important that your baby learns to cross the midline torso as this helps to ensure both sides of the body are in perfect coordination with the brain.
Apart from fine motor skills, babies also develop their visual cognition through shapes and colours around them. They learn to connect the fact that a ball is round and equates to a circle. As they explore their environment, they will also learn about colours, especially when verbalised by the people around them.
One of the best things about infant care centres in Singapore is the reassurance of having your baby learn these essential skills in a nurturing environment that is specially designed. You can also take comfort knowing that the teachers are training to guide your little one as he/she picks up these skills at his/her own pace.
What could be more exciting than to witness your child’s first word and his/her speech development thereafter? Your child’s first words tell so much about the things that they are thinking of which helps you understand him/her at a deeper level.
For young children, speech development comes naturally as they gain the confidence to interact with their surroundings and the people around them. However, learning to speak goes beyond communicating what one is thinking of – it is equally important to respond to conversations.
When children are immersed in an interactive environment, they will be more motivated to pick up speech and language. Through observation of their peers, children will imitate the different sounds they hear, which is an important building block to linguistic development.
Building loving and nurturing relationships with infants is important as it gives them a strong sense of comfort and safety, which boosts their confidence over time. Through these positive relationships, they then develop skills to socialise and relate to others in future.
You might have noticed how babies at an infant care centre learn to self-soothe with the help of their educarers. A crying infant will learn that he/she is safe in the arms of the teacher when he/she is being cuddled and soon will learn to soothe himself/herself to sleep.
When infants see that they are in control of their emotions, they learn to express themselves appropriately.
At our Little Footprints Preschool centres, the infant care section is set up in a way that encourages exploration as babies learn about the environment.
Exploratory play involves tapping on all 5 senses of infants – see, smell, touch, taste, hear. Through hands-on activities, we encourage curiosity in infants as they reach out and discover new things for themselves.
This exploratory skill comes in handy during the early years, especially when infants are promoted to playgroup. With a play-based curriculum focused on exploration and hands-on learning in playgroup and pre-nursery, our littlest ones will benefit from having a good head start during their infant care days.
Ready to Check Out a Suitable Infant Care?
Now that you are ready to tour your shortlisted preschools in Singapore that offer infant care services, where do you start?
You might want to check out the infant care programme at Little Footprints Preschool that starts off with the Blooming Minds curriculum. Under the educarers’ guidance, your children will learn to be responsive and respectful, while growing strong relationships with the people they meet.
Come and book a tour at your preferred Little Footprints Preschool centre to check out our facilities and learning environment!
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