If your child is entering childcare soon, you may be wondering what they should wear. Yes, there are appropriate and inappropriate clothes! But before you start to stress, I’ll show you that it’s not complicated when you stick to considerations of practicality, safety and wellbeing.
Here are my FIVE key tips for dressing your child for childcare:
Dress for the weather
Because of the Australian climate, protection from the sun should always be a priority when dressing your child. Broad-brimmed hats, sunscreen, and covered shoulders are a must. As the weather cools, the key is to be prepared for variations in temperature. Warmer layers like long-sleeve shirts and jackets are great for cooler mornings, and can easily be removed as the day heats up. If the weather is very cold, gloves and warm hats are a good idea for outside play.
Choose functionality, not fashion
Let me just say this: paint, dirt and sand. That’s right, be prepared for your child’s clothes to get dirty. You might be tempted to send your child to childcare looking cute as a button in the latest fashion, but they need to wear functional clothes that can get dirty and that are easy for them to go to the bathroom in.
Clothes should fit well and be comfortable so they don’t distract your child. If your child has sensitive skin opt for cotton-based, breathable fabrics to avoid any irritation.
Choose sensible footwear
Remember that your child won’t just be sitting indoors, but will be doing a host of activities outdoors too. Little feet can easily be injured if they don’t have enough protection. Those dainty sandals may be the cutest thing but if they are hard to run in and leave the feet exposed, your child could end up injured because of trips or the infamous stubbed toe.
You want to know your child will be safe, so minimise risk and invest in some shoes that fit well and have well-gripping soles. They should preferably be enclosed with Velcro for convenience.
Even the smallest items should be labelled. It’s quite likely that your child will have some of the same clothes as another child there. Labelling makes items easier to keep track of for childcare workers and yourself!
Leave jewellery at home
Save your child from tears when their favourite piece of jewellery is lost or broken by keeping it for home use or special occasion wear. Items like necklaces can also prove to be injury hazards if they get caught or pulled on.
It’s a good idea to check in with your child care provider to see if they have any policies on clothing. And remember to pack spares!