EFFECT OF DAYCARE ON SOCIALIZATION OF PRESCHOOL STUDENTS EKITI STATE
Background to the Study
Every group or society has its norms and values which its members learn and pass to the next generation. These norms and values differ from one culture to another; for example people speak different languages, have different mode of dressing, different patterns of behavior as well as rules and regulations (Okonkwo, 2007). Therefore in the light of this, when a child is born he does not fit into these skills immediately. He has to go through a series of learning tasks because the child at birth is a biological being but not a social being. He is both physically and mentally helpless and hence his dependence on parents for all his requirements.
Gotep (2009) is of the opinion that when we were born, we found society already there. Consequently, in our societies, certain individuals, groups, places, things, events, situations and values exist which provide socializing experiences as we are exposed to them. Different ways of learning and different agencies of socialization follow one another in more or less orderly sequences as the individual passes from one stage of life cycle to the other. In the light of this, a new born baby is anti-social at birth, but for him to become an integrated member of his society, he must go through h the process of understanding the community’s needs, practices and patterns of behavior and it is this process that is called socialization. Thus, Hassan (2004) defines socialization “as a means through which people learn ideas and skills that enable them to interact with others properly”.
According to NTI (2000), socialization is a process by which individual members learn the acceptable norms and values of their society in order to behave in a way that is regarded as acceptable. This implies that a child is born physically helpless and therefore depends on other people for everything. He cannot speak nor communicate with others about his pains or pleasure. He learns how to walk, wear dresses, run about, eat and so on, but with experience, he becomes physically independent.
Socialization is a continuous process which begins from birth to death. It transforms and infants into complete human beings who are able to participate actively in the social relations of his community. Socialization appears to be most intense during the early years in life, but in reality it goes on throughout life cycle. At every stage of life, people learn new skills, new roles and new ways of adjusting to their positions.
As a young child, a person may behave in a certain way such as crying in public without shame. As an adult he tends to behave differently (Okonkwo, 2007).
Furthermore, Ekpiwre (2005) is of the opinion that socialization which is of two categories that is; primary and secondary are largely independent of each other toward a successful end. However, the secondary socialization will always be very successful anytime the primary socialization is given a solid background. For example, a child that is shy, weak and cowardly is most likely to get into secondary socialization and still be found in the same manner because early experiences have greater impact on the behaviour of children than later experiences.
Gotep (1999) is of the opinion that education on the other hand has remained a veritable social process in capacity building and maintenance of society for decades.
While parents are usually the best caregivers for their children, circumstances often necessitate that some parents seek part-time or full-time day care services. Parents should carefully choose the most appropriate day care provider based on their child’s age and individual needs. Since a day care provider steps into a “substitute caregiver” role, she will inadvertently affect a child’s development. Factors such as the amount of time a child spends in day care, the provider’s investment in the child’s care beyond merely “babysitting” and the overall quality of care will determine whether those effects on the child’s development are positive or negative.
Child care is provided in Nurseries or Creches or by a nanny or family childcare provider, caring for children in their own homes. It can also take on a more formal structure, with education, child development, discipline and even pre-school education falling into the fold of services. According to Wikipedia (2006), the service is known as child care in the United Kingdom and Australia and childcare or day care in North America.
Researches have shown that day cares are of two types, namely; non-profit daycare and profit- oriented daycare centers (Friendly and McCain, 2008). According to them, non-profit daycare centers are much more likely to produce the high quality environments in which children thrive. They believe they may receive preferential treatment in rents, especially if they are affiliated with a church that is otherwise unoccupied during the week, or with a school that has surplus space.
Friendly and McCain (2008) are of the opinion that location within a school may further bring the advantage of coordinated programmes with the school and the advantage of a single location for parents who have older school-age children as well. However, non-profits are typically limited in size to a single location as the parents-owners have no motivation to manage other locations where their children are not present and since they are the legal owners, they provide consulting services for free. For profit-oriented daycares, they are operated by a single individual out of their home.
This can be a stay-at-home parent, who seeks supplemental income while caring for their own child. As stated by them, non-profit based daycares have an advantage in fund-raising as most people will not donate to a profit-oriented organization.
Studies have shown that good daycare for non-infants are not harmful while some advocate that day care is inherently inferior to parental care (Erel, Oberman and Yirimiya, 2000). Anderson (2009) states that children provided with daycare are more sociable, more popular and deal with peers better than those raised at home. In some cases, good daycare can provide different experiences than parental care does. In a study by National Institute of Health released in 2007, after following children through early childhood to the 6th grade, it was found that the children who received a higher quality of child care scored higher on 5th grade vocabulary tests than the children who had attended child care of a lower quality. The study also reported that teachers found children from childcare to be disobedient, fight more frequently and more argumentative. Although, few mothers indicated that their children exhibit negative behavior after attending daycare, this may be due to the fact that research also indicated that teachers found children from childcare to be disobedient.
Additional study has shown that bad daycare puts the child at physical, emotional and attachment risk. Higher quality care was associated with better outcomes. Children in higher quality child care had somewhat better language and cognitive development during the first four and half years of life than those in lower quality care (Wikipedia, 2006). Supporting this, Belsky (2007) observed that the effect of daycare appears to depend on the quality of the care provided. Poorly trained child-care workers and large child-caregiver ratios do not promote positive development in children. In contrast, negative effects seem minimal and may even be outweighed by positive effects in spacious, well-equipped, adequately staffed facilities that provide lots of individual attention and carefully planned activities.
Statement of the Problem
The absence of the mother at home often, particularly during the formative years of the child creates a lot of problem for the proper developments of the child physically, socially and emotionally. More so, when children are below school age, the effects are found to be more negative on the health of the child. Day care services in Nigeria have significance influence on child socialization and development. This study will investigate what effect day care have on social and emotional development of a child from 1 year to 3 years. Would working mothers perceive daycare centers as being able to improve children’s social development.
Objectives of the Study
The major objective of this study in to investigate the effect of day care on children socialization on the first three years
The specific objectives are;
- To identify the impact of the daycare on child socialization of preschool children
- To determine if working mothers perceive daycare centers as being able to improve children’s’ cognitive development
- To investigate if working mothers perceive daycare centers as being able to improve children’s’ Social development
(4) To determine if children who pass through day care are more socialized than children who did not pass through daycare
The following research questions were formulated in order to guide the research:
- What are the impacts of daycare on child socialization of preschool children?
- Do working mothers perceive daycare centers as being able to improve children’s cognitive development?
- Would working mothers perceive daycare centers as being able to improve children’s Social development?
- Do children who pass through day care are more socialized than children who did not pass through daycare?
Significance of the Study
The study will provide the Ministry of Education planners, teachers, learners, the public and other stakeholders with a better understanding of the importance of socialization on children. This will help the Ministry of Education decide where to increase their investment in childcare’s early years as they set the stage for subsequent education and development.
The study will assist the guidance counselors to device means of helping children who find it difficult to fit into the society to do as it demand due to the side – effect of broken home on the socialization process thereby changing their attitude for the better.
The study will invariably serve as directional guide and reference sources to curriculum planners if the responses of the respondents proved positive.
Scope of the Study
The study is aimed at investigating the effect of daycare on socialization of preschool students in Ikere Local Government Area. The study is also delimited to all the teachers of preschool children in Ikere Local Government Area. Furthermore, due to the fact that socialization is a learning process by which infants are transformed into normal human beings possessed of culture and are able to participate in other social relations is a process which begins right from home.
Limitation of the Study
According to Mugenda and Mugenda (1999) limitations are an aspect of research that may negatively affect the results of a study but which the researcher has no control.
Any research would not be free from problems. Thus in the course of this study, the most challenging and facing problems were;
very few respondents were not willing to give reliable information demanded by the research questionnaire. Since some respondents discussed the questions before answering the questionnaire. absence of very few samples at the time of interventional period.
Operational Definition of Terms
Socialization: Socialization is the process by which children and adult are learn from others. We begin teaching from other during the early days of life, most of the people conti nue their social learning all through life (unless some mental or physical disability shows the learning process)
Child: is a human between the stage of birth and puberty the legal definition of child general refers to a minor, otherwise known as a person younger than age of majority.
Daycare: Child care or day care is the care of a child during the day by a person other than the child’s legal guidance typically performed by someone outside the child’s immediate family.
School: A school is an institution design for the teaching of students (or pupils) under the direction of teachers.
Preschool: A preschool is an educational establishment offering early childhood education of children between the age of three (3) and five (5), prior to the commencement of compulsory education at primary school.
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