10 Tips: Transitioning Your Child to Daycare

Your little one is just about to start daycare – you’ve found just the right place and while it will be tough to say “bye-bye!” every day, you’re feeling ready to get back to work and finally have a moment to finish the dishes that have been piling up, or maybe even take a sweet moment to yourself.

But how do you transition your child from home to daycare? Taking the time to integrate your kids slowly will not only help them adjust to their new schedule and start making friends, it will ease the changes you will experience as a parent.

Here are a few tips to help things go a little more smoothly as your child adjusts to life at daycare:

1. Visit the daycare together a few times first

There’s no need to dive head first off the deep end! Start by introducing your little one to the place where they will spend their weekdays. Schedule a few visits with the daycare – you can introduce your little one to their future educators and even some of the kids.

2. Tell your child what to expect

Take the time to explain what their daily routine will be like, including types of activities, naptime and meals, and when you will drop them off or pick them up.  Make sure you do this every day!

3. Transition gradually, a little longer every time

Most daycares will have a transition plan for new babies: first, you and your child will spend a few hours a morning together at the daycare for about a week.  The next week, your child will spend that same amount of time alone.  Finally, the third week, they should be going full-time.  It is rare that a child will need more than a month to adjust.

4. Say goodbye quickly and with confidence

Maybe that’s giving them a quick hug, a kiss or a sweet wave, but there’s no need to linger! The educators at your daycare see new kids who miss their parents on a regular basis and have lots of experience helping them through.

5. Adjust your schedule at home for naps and lunch time

Try to do this before your child starts daycare – if your home schedule is similar to the daycare’s, it will be much easier for your child to adapt.  This is especially important if your child is at daycare part-time.

6. Consistency is key

Whatever you do, try to keep you schedule as consistent as possible, especially when it comes to bedtime routines!

7. Clear your calendar for when you pick-up your child, for open-ended play

Much like adults are often tired after a day at work, your child will be tired after a day at daycare!  Try not to schedule any activities immediately after picking them up, and instead give them the option of going straight home, stopping at the park, or taking a leisurely stroll in the neighborhood. If you do go home, offer them simple activities with no definitive end point, like drawing or playing with Legos.

8. Take time to talk to the care provider(s) and develop a good relationship

Get to know the educators at your daycare – they are an important resource and can tell you lots about what is going on during the day and how your child is adjusting. When you pick-up your child from daycare, ask how things went, along with the names of their new friends and adults in charge. Then, when you get home you’ll be ready to talk about everything with your little one.

9. Befriend other parents at the daycare and make playdates

This can be beneficial for both you and your child! This is a way to help your kids develop friendships with each other, and for you to meet other adults who are experiencing similar challenges as you. You can talk about issues you are having with each other, and help each other problem solve as you go.

10. Teach your child about sharing, taking turns, compromise, collaboration

It can be a tricky transition for your child to go from being alone at home to being in a group of 6-10 children, especially with lots of cool new toys.  Start by bringing them to play groups in the neighborhood, and model how to share toys when you play with them at home. Encourage your child to think about how others feel and demonstrate coping strategies for negative emotions.

Daycare Subsidies

The daycare subsidy system is complex and not always easy to understand. Depending on your income and immigration status daycare can cost anywhere between 8.25$ and 40$ per day. Take a look below to find out whether you are eligible and how much daycare costs!

Am I Eligible for a Subsidy?

How Much Does Daycare Cost?

For a breakdown of daycare cost based on income, visit the Famille Québec website. 

Which Daycares are Subsidized?

Centres de la petite enfance (CPEs) are not the only daycares with subsidized care available! Some private daycares and home daycares also have subsidized care. To find out which ones offer this service, visit https://www.laplace0-5.com/geosearch.

Not sure what the difference is between types of daycare? Take a look at our blog post!

Changes are Coming

The subsidy system is changing over the next 4 years. For more information please visit the Famille Québec website. You can also get in touch with our Family Liaison, who would be happy to answer your questions and help navigate this important system. 

Discover how to find the right daycare for your child... in Cantonese or Arabic!

This spring, we met with 6 incredible Montreal moms – these multilingual mothers translated our first naptime session about daycare registration into several languages: Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean, Arabic, Spanish and Bangla.

We have been editing the videos over the past couple of months and our first videos are finally online! Take a look and come back soon – we’ll be adding more translations over the coming weeks.

Discover the videos!







Family activities - August 10th 2020

Hello Families,

How is your summer going? A lot of families are now almost done with the back-to-school shopping. I hope you won’t have to run around too much to get everything on your list. You can find great deals in local stores around the neighborhood.

There are some nice activities again this week:

You can find additionnal activities here

Family activities - November 16th 2020

Hello Families,

The rain and the cold were there this weekend but I hope you still went for a nice walk to get some fresh air and get energized for the week 🌞.
Thank you to those who made it last Friday to the Innovation-Assistance Farmer’s market; stay tuned for the next one 🥕

The Great early childhood week started on November 15th. Join us in celebrating the childcare staff, family organizations, parents and everyone else in the community who make it possible for children to grow and develop as best as they should. Send us drawings of your little ones (take a pic or come drop them off by appointment) so we can create a beautiful collage of the families in Peter-McGill on Friday November 20th for the International children’s day! (older siblings can help also).
Join our parents group and share pics of you proudly wearing your blankie squares!


Upcoming Activities and Events

Check out our calendar for the regular weekly activities like playgroups, storytimes, support groups, and more. Contact us if you’re looking for something in particular 🔎

    • ∆ the children’s library at Innovation-Youth now offers new amazing resources
    •      – personalized Zoom storytime sessions! up to 30 minutes per child
    •      – homework support – up to 45 minutes
    •      – WHEN: Tuesdays and Wednesdays 4-6pm
    •      – contact bibliotheque@direction.ca to set up a time
    • ∆ Grace, the lovely librarian at Innovation-Youth, is creating Advent calendars for kids ages 3-10 years old to open from November 29th to December 24th
    •      – 24 days of activities and treats! 🎁
    •      – contact her at bibliotheque@direction.ca with the names and ages of your children
    •      – deadline to request a calendar is November 20th
    • ∆ the Ville-Marie borough invites all the residents to a virtual information and discussion session in order to present the social cohabitation measures and to collect the concerns, solutions and questions of citizens
    •      – WHEN: Thursday November 19th 5-6:30pm
    •      – Registration here
    •      – You can also reach the Special cohabitation brigade for complaints and questions
    •      – More information: https://montreal.ca/actualites/itinerance-dans-ville-marie-de-nouvelles-mesures-daide-pour-lhiver (in French)
    • ∆ Still have some small electronics and dangerous household products like paint or batteries to get rid of? Eco-Quartier Peter-McGill is there for you ♻️
    •      – WHEN: Thursday November 19th 10am-6pm
    •      – WHERE: 1240 St Marc
    •      – More information: https://www.facebook.com/ecoquartier.petermcgill/posts/3447897895308897 (in French)
    • ∆ The Père Ambroise public library has online activities for the whole family
    •       – https://www.facebook.com/BiblioPereAmbroise/posts/10158051752829565

Family activities - November 2nd 2020

Hello Families,

Halloween is done and the little monsters hung up their costumes until next year. It might be time to schedule your yearly dentist appointment now, after all that candy 🍬🍭

Another month is starting, getting us that much closer to winter. The snow covered the sidewalks this morning with its white coat ❄️, and I almost fell on my nose twice already! Watch your steps when you take a walk outside now, and don’t forget your gloves.

Families with children under 5 years old, you can still fill out the parents support survey to let us know about your childcare needs here

Upcoming Activities

Your favorite virtual activities are still here this week:

  • – story times with Mother Goose and CUSP
  • – playgroup at the CLSC Metro
  • – breastfeeding support groups
  • – nutrition and care workshops at the Dispensary
  •   …
  • – check out the full activities schedule for all the details

📚 Innovation-Youth’s children’s library is closed but Grace, the wonderful librarian, continues to offer you books bundles – register here and choose a time to come pick them up

🏠 Looking for more information on affordable/social housing and how to apply for COOP housing? The Comité Logement Ville-Marie offers an in-person workshop this Wednesday (mostly in French) 

  • Where: Comité social Centre-Sud, 1710 rue Beaudry, local 2.7 (Beaudry metro station)
  • When: Wednesday November 4th, 1:30-3pm
  • Registration: 514-521-5992 / info@clvm.org / www.clvm.org

More resources here

Family activities - November 9th 2020

Hello Families,

I hope you enjoyed the weekend and took in as much sunshine as you could! The weather will offer us a few more beautiful days so take the time to have a walk with your close ones.

🥦🥕 Innovation-Youth is looking for volunteers to make phone calls to clients of the Innovation-Assistance’s food program. Contact Jessica at 514 843-3996 or innov-coord@direction.ca

Upcoming Activities

Several new activities are coming this week. Check out the regulars here

  • ∆ Farmer’s market / Innovation Assistance in collaboration with Carya Gardens
  •      – Vegetables, fruits and products from local farmers
  •      – Book bundles available (registration needed)
  •      – Special activity packages for families (participate in a collective collage to be revealed on November 20th)
  •      – ‘Pay what you want’ – cash only
  •      – Bring your bag and your mask
  •           – WHEN: Friday November 13th  1-3pm
  •           – WHERE: 2154 Sainte-Catherine West
  •            – https://www.facebook.com/events/387690838943105
  • ∆ Eco-quizz / Éco-Quartier Peter-McGill
  •      – Learn more on environment management and how to limit waste
  •      – Questions, information, surprises!
  •           – WHEN: every Tuesday at 1pm
  •           – more details: https://www.facebook.com/events/3580446195311444
  • ∆ Fun with Physics: sink or float? / McGill Science
  •      – For kids 8-12 years old
  •      – Interactive learning session where they will discover what makes an object sink or float by performing hands-on experiments with common household objects
  •           – WHEN: Saturday November 14th  11am-12:30pm
  •           – Registration: https://tinyurl.com/sink-or-float-phys-1
  •           – more information: https://www.mcgill.ca/science/channels/event/mcgill-families-fun-physics-sink-or-float-325489

Looking for more in the neighborhood? Check our resources list here

Family activities - October 12th 2020


Hello Families,

I hope you had a nice long weekend. Now is time to think about Halloween! Although we are limited with celebration activities this year, you can still plan something at home, like a candy hunt or a dress-up contest with the kids 👻

🏠 If you’re looking for more information on affordable/social housing and you want to put your name on the list for COOPs, the Comité Logement Ville-Marie offers an in-person workshop this Wednesday (in French mostly) 

  • – Where: Comité social Centre-Sud, 1710 rue Beaudry, local 2.7 (Beaudry metro station)
  • – When: Wednesday October 14th, 1:30-3pm
  • – Registration: 514-521-5992 / info@clvm.org / www.clvm.org

Upcoming Activities

  • ∆  Zoom goose – Montreal Parent-Child Mother Goose program
    •      – Wednesdays at 10am in French
    •      – Thursdays at 10am in English
    •      – Contact Robin at emailrsales@gmail.com to register 
  • ∆  Virtual breastfeeding support group – CLSC Metro with La leche league
  • ∆  Parenthèse playgroup – CLSC Metro
    •      – Thursday 10-11am
    •      – children 1-2 years old
    •      – Register with Annabel Marcogliese 514-934-0354 extension 7429 
  • ∆  Creative writing club for 9 years old and over – Innovation-Youth
    •      – Fridays at 4pm
    •      – contact Grace for more information 
  • ∆  weekly events at CUSP !
    •      – conversation cafés: English – Tuesday 12pm / French – Thursday 11am
    •      – art class for kids 4 years and older – Friday at 5pm
    •      – reading circle: English – Tuesday 6pm / French – Sunday 6pm
    •      – registration links https://www.facebook.com/StudentParentsCentre
  • ∆  virtual workshops at the Dietary Dispensary
  • ∆  breasfeeding support group with Nourri-Source

More resources here

Family activities - October 19th 2020


Hello Families,

The rain is here to stay a little while apparently, so don’t forget your umbrella and have fun jumping in the puddles with (or without!) your kids ☔

♻️ If you have stuff laying around your house and you don’t know how to get rid of it, Eco-Quartier Peter-McGill offers until Friday a free pick-up service for small appliances, electronics, clothes… RebusRécup

Your favorite library at Innovation-Youth is assembling Family bundles again, with diapers, formula, snacks, activities… for children under 5 years old. Fill out this form to receive one (pick it up at the Farmer’s market next week on October 30th)
📚 You can also borrow and return books on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 4 to 6pm, or by appointement. Choose your books and a time by completing this form

There are still a few spots available at the FCV drop-in daycare. Let us know if you’re interested by filling out this short survey 🧒

Upcoming Activities

For the list of recurrent activities, visit Families Downtown calendar here

  • ∆  CUSP offers conversation cafés to improve your language skills
  •         English – Tuesday 12pm – registration
  •         French – Thursday 11am – registration

More resources here

Family activities - October 26th 2020


Hello Families,

So Halloween is coming and the cold is here 🥶. Turn on the heaters but try to keep the temperature around 21 degrees to be comfortable and check your humidity level indoors so you don’t get dehydrated (a good trick is to hang your laundry 👚 to air dry instead of using your electric dryer)

We have a few spots available in our Parents multiplicateurs program meeting this Friday morning. If you want to join us for a series of workshops in a small group settings, please contact me to receive more details.
           Downtown parents multipliers

Upcoming Activities

For the list of recurrent activities, visit our updated Families Downtown calendar here

  • ∆ Farmers Market –  Innovation Assistance in collaboration with Carya Gardens
    • – selection of organic local fruits and veggies, and … maybe some Halloween candies 🍬 🎃
    • – family bundles and books available
    • – “Pay what you like” – cash only
    • – Bring your mask, your wallet and your bag

More resources here