Childcare

Childminder

Childminders care for babies, toddlers and children in their own home, supporting their learning and development.

Annual Salary

Variable

Average UK salary in 2018 was £29,588 (source Office for Statistics)

Working hours

Variable

What's it all about?

Your registration with OFSTED means that you'll make sure you follow the Early Years Foundation Stage framework in your work. You'll make sure that the children in your care learn and develop, and are kept healthy and safe.

Your day-to-day tasks will depend on how old the children are, but may include:

  • providing inspirational learning activities
  • providing a range of free play activities, both indoors and outside
  • planning, preparing and serving meals
  • changing nappies and making up bottles for babies
  • taking children on outings
  • taking older children to and from playgroup or school

You'll work with other childcare professionals in the local area to support children's learning and development.

You'll make sure that the children in your care have the knowledge and skills they need to start school.

If you want to care for children under 8 for more than 2 hours a day, you'll need to register with OFSTED. Before you register, you'll usually need:

  • a childcare qualification approved by your local council
  • a paediatric first aid course
  • training in safeguarding children
  • training in food hygiene

Your first step is to look at GOV.UK’s pre-registration briefing on becoming a childminder.

Your local council may also be able to give you advice and financial help on setting up your childminding business.

You'll also need to have:


Variable

You'll be self-employed and set your own rates. As a guide, the going rate is around £4.00 to £6.00 per hour for each child you look after.

You'll need to pay your own tax and insurance. You'll also have to pay for meals, toys and equipment.

Variable

You'll set your own hours, but they'll have to fit in with the needs of parents and guardians. Your working day could be between 8am and 6pm. You may need to work some evenings and weekends.

The job is physically demanding, involving lifting and carrying.

You'll spend most of your time in your own home.

With experience you could expand your business and take on a childcare assistant. You could also become a network coordinator, supporting other local childminders.

With further training you could become a tutor on childminding courses. You could also move into a related job like nursery worker, playworker, community play leader or teaching assistant.

You'll find information on careers and courses in childcare from:

Foundation Years has information about early years education and childcare.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • sensitivity and understanding
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • the ability to work well with others
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • customer service skills
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
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