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Checklist for Finding YOUR KiTa

Many parents, especially first-time parents, find it challenging and overwhelming to select a childcare facility for their precious little ones in Zurich. Places for babies and toddlers are in high demand, but parents should try to avoid feeling pressured while choosing the right place. Such an important decision is not always easy to make based on a visit that lasts one or two hours, and I recommend parents visit three to four places before committing. Based on my experience in Zurich facilities and things I considered when building KiddieLand, here are some items to look for that might not be so apparent at first glance.

On your visit, pay attention to…


Space and Classrooms

Look for child-friendly infrastructure and space fit for purpose. (Enough toilet capacity. Everything on one floor vs. multi-level house, etc.) Stairs add complexity and risk for younger children. High-quality, solid wooden furniture is always preferred.

Are there ample and varied toys, learning materials, and equipment to stimulate and encourage development? Are the toys or the rooms rotated periodically to keep children interested? Does the facility have its own outdoor space?


Check if the concept is age-appropriate vs. mixed-age, and be sure to ask:

What curriculum or educational concept is offered? What milestones are observed and tracked? How are they followed?
How many trained teachers (not apprentices or interns) work in the group?
What kind of educational training do the caregivers have? Up-to-date CPR and First Aid training?


Depending on attendance level, the childcare center might be the primary nutrition provider for your child. This is fundamental to the child’s development but often overlooked or neglected. Pay close attention and be sure to find out the following:

Which meals and snacks does the center serve? Where do the ingredients come from? Are they organic? How many times per week do they serve meat or fish? What kind of meat and fish products are typically on the menu? (i.e., ground meat, sausage, or sausage-like products)
Check the week’s menu and look for variety and nutritiousness. Sample the food.
Are baby purees made in-house? Fresh daily, every few days, or weekly? Are they ever frozen? Who makes them?

Kitchen and Cook

Look for an appropriately-sized kitchen with restaurant-grade (HACCP-complaint) vs. home-grade equipment.

Who prepares meals, and is that person formally trained to do so. What percentage do they work? Do they prepare ALL meals or only lunch? Who does the rest?

Parent Communication

Children spend eight hours or more per day in care. Naturally, parents want to be adequately informed about their child’s day.

How will you get insights into your child’s day? Are pictures shared with parents? If so, how and how often? Are there regular newsletters?

Cleaning and Hygiene

Look for general organization and cleanliness.

Who cleans the facility? Is it cleaned daily? Are professional or supermarket cleaning products used?

To take it further…


Try to talk to some parents (current and former) who have used the services. Their experience will be beneficial as they have probably walked in your shoes already. If they have had their child or children in care for a longer time, they have likely developed a comprehensive view of the quality offered across the board, as opposed to just one group.


No center is perfect. You should find the one ideal for your family and whose offer and concept you can buy into. Ultimately, the critical question you need to ask yourself is:

Do I feel confident with my decision, and am I genuinely comfortable leaving my child in the care of the chosen facility?


Good luck with your search!

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