Time Management Methods for a Home Daycare

Time Management Methods for a Home Daycare Business

Time management separates daycare owners who are doing exceptionally well with operating a childcare business from those who struggle to succeed. Having time management methods in place is essential for any daycare owner. Time management is the process of organizing and planning how to divide your time between day-to-day activities without feeling overwhelmed. Everyday activities include planning, operations, food prep, recordkeeping, daily routine for children, housekeeping, and parent interaction. So many things in our personal lives and business compete for our time and distract us from getting things done. Some tools to assist with time management include:


Invest in a calendar or planner to eliminate brain fogs and distractions to stay on track with each task you need to complete. Here\’s the secret to adding more time to your day, WRITE IT DOWN! A planner will allow you to keep track of birthdays, training events, hours worked, and your physical health, such as diet and exercise & scheduled doctor and dentist appointments. It will also help lower your stress levels by not worrying about being late or having to back out of a commitment at the last minute because it acts as a reminder so that you can schedule things accordingly. A planner is an excellent resource for time management.

Daily Routine

Create a daily routine. A daily routine provides guidance on how your time will be managed during the hours that the children are in your care. Having a routine can be helpful in times of unpredictability, uncertainty, and stress. The daily routine should include the time of breakfast, free play, lunch, snack, activities, individual time, circle time, storytime, outside play, music and movement, naptime, clean-up time, etc.


Entrust a task or responsibility to another person. Some of your daily tasks can be completed by parents or family members. For example, you can have the parent(s) put sunscreen on their children before their arrival or a family member assist you with washing clothes and cleaning the dishes. Delegating small tasks such as the ones listed can help with time tremendously.


Add nap time to your daily routine. Most children under age five will take a nap during the day. Nap time should be a part of your daily routine and should be at the same time every day. Take this time to complete the task that is impossible to do when the kids are awake. Naptime is a perfect time to get things done, such as preparing the pm snack, cleaning up, or starting to prepare for closing.

Food Preparation

Plan your food menu a week or even a month in advance. Food preparation involves planning meals in advance. Plan menus that meet nutrition standards and create 5 to 10 weekly menus and rotate them. Try to prep meals for the children during times when managing the children will be easier. For example, prepare breakfast before the children arrive, prepare lunch for the next day after closing, store it in containers with tops, and plan snacks when the children are napping.


Set Boundaries and Expectations. Managing time while working from home with children requires setting boundaries and expectations. This can be done by communicating your policies and procedures with parent(s) and your family so everyone knows what is expected, and you can all work together to get it done. For example, don\’t allow parents to pick up their children during naptime. This will eliminate interruptions that will keep you from completing the task you set during this time and eliminate disrupting the other children\’s naptime.

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