While a person often provides basic care and supervision of her own children, the term "child care" most often refers to care for children provided by someone else outside the home. Many working parents take toddlers to daycare centers or in-home providers for childcare before they reach school age.
Childcare providers are professionals, often licensed in their states, who provide basic care for others' children. In early childhood programs, care providers balance basic supervision with academic training and development curriculum. Childcare also refers to programs established by local and state governments and agencies to provide safe living for kids without homes.