Childcare Duties: Skills Every Provider Should Have

/Childcare Duties: Skills Every Provider Should Have

When searching for childcare providers, parents often have a particular type of candidate in mind. There are certain skills every provider should have, and a few that set a candidate apart from the rest.

Writing a Childcare Job Description Can Help You Screen Candidates.

First, a list of child care duties is easy to generate. Think about what you need most in a childcare provider, and go from there.

Next, what will you include in your child care job description? What are your minimum requirements? Can he or she work around you and your spouse’s work schedules?

Consider the basic requirements for the age, gender, and developmental level of your child. Think of the must-have, basic requirements of child care worker skills.

Writing this all down will help immensely once you start interviewing candidates.

The person who cares for your precious children will need to be better than the minimum, with real skills. Furthermore, let’s recognize that the ideal child care provider description is so much more than a list of tangible skills.

Child Care Duties Every Provider Should Be Able to Carry Out

Almost every child care worker job description includes these entry-level tasks. Generally, parents should expect a daycare worker or private nanny can perform the following basic child care duties:

  • Monitor the safety of the children 
  • Supervise and engage children in age-appropriate activities (and have the stamina to keep up)
  • Change diapers and clothing for infants and toddlers
  • Feed babies and toddlers
  • Prepare light meals or snacks for older kids
  • Clean play areas and surfaces (or help children do it)
  • Help children maintain proper hygiene (like hand-washing)
  • Provide simple discipline 

Don’t settle for just the basics, though. Your family deserves more. Imagine someone who brings much more than basic child care provider duties. Many families find au pair childcare is a better solution with far-reaching benefits. 

Child Care Responsibilities That Show a Candidate Has Gone Above & Beyond

Parents want to know they’re getting the most bang for their buck. More importantly, they want the highest quality of care for their kids. So, a good child care provider job description might include personality traits, other child care duties, even being a safe and experienced driver.

In addition to child care duties, a child care description may include some of the following:

  • Patience, compassion, a love for children
  • Possess good decision-making skills
  • Communication skills, including persuasion and mediation
  • Promptness, especially when you need the kids to get places on time
  • Safe driving record and some driving experience
  • Educational background, or at least the ability to engage the children in age-appropriate learning experiences that are both interesting and fun
  • Teaching or tutoring skills, the ability to provide homework help at minimum
  • Organizational skills 
  • Ability to cook, knowledge of nutrition and kitchen safety

What can parents expect of a nanny or daycare center?

In general, all of the basic child care duties should be automatic. Parents who want some of the extras may find themselves paying extra.

One Host Mom, Cambria, found a better solution when she hired an Au Pair.

When attempting to describe her Au Pair, Talme, Cambria finds herself at a loss for adequate words.

“She means comfort,” Cambria says, “she means support; she means relief, she means connection; and she means the world.”

Parents who participate in the Au Pair Program choose from hundreds of candidates who want to go above and beyond bringing the world to your family.

Duties that Au Pairs are uniquely equipped to take on compared to nanny/ daycare:

There are many childcare duties that Au Pairs are particularly well-equipped to handle. This is due to a variety of reasons; not least of all, the fact that Au Pairs generally have a passion for new experiences. They are often motivated by a deep love of spending time with children and a desire to experience U.S. culture.

This dynamic, combined with hosting an Au Pair in your home, enables Au Pairs to connect with their Host Families in a unique, meaningful way.

Relationships and family-building

Love, support, and connection are much harder to measure and quantify as childcare duties. Parents who choose to hire Au Pairs find relationships. These can be deeper, longer-lasting, and more meaningful than with a nanny or daycare center. 

Amber, a Host Mom, says, “I am able to work away from home without worry, knowing that [my kids] are receiving love that I would consider nearly equivalent to a parent’s love.”

That’s powerful.

Individual attention like that can change a child’s life.

Parents of children with special needs require more than basic child care duties and responsibilities. Au Pairs are uniquely able to provide the daily dedication, routine, and consistency special children need. Au Pairs provide support to parents and build connections within families.

It’s good to know that your kids are loved. However, when they love their Au Pair back, it’s even better. Au Pairs become loving, contributing members of the extended family. They share inside jokes and keep parents and grandparents in-the-loop. 

Many Au Pairs have creative ways to let parents feel included. Some send videos and pictures throughout the day. Others help the children create beautiful, thoughtful cards and projects. 

Transportation and life logistics

Some daycare centers provide transportation before and after school. However, will they take your children to sports practice, lessons, or playdates? An Au Pair can do all of that and more.

While homework help or tutoring might be part of some daycare schedules not all offer it. In contrast, an Au Pair can expose kids to another language and culture. Learning from a native speaker can’t be compared to learning from a textbook or in a classroom. Au Pairs bring language and culture alive in a unique way for kids.

Au Pairs can work a much more flexible schedule to match the needs of their Host Families. For example, many families need care beyond the traditional 6:00 pm end of workday, particularly if one or both parents commute. Split shifts are no problem either. Au Pairs can work 10 hours or less daily, with a total of no more than 45 hours each week. 

Finally, when is the last time your daycare provider or nanny did the kids’ laundry? Au Pairs can do childcare-related tasks for families, too.

Host Parents can assign these child care duties:

  • washing kids’ laundry
  • cleaning kids-only spaces
  • light meal prep
  • supervising chores 

Now That You Know What to Write in Your Childcare Job Description, Start Searching for Candidates!

Go Au Pair offers candidates with all the required child care skills plus a variety of extras to meet the needs of today’s dynamic families.

Additionally, an Au Pair can roll other expenses (such as tutoring, daycare, even buying prepared foods) into just one price.

Whatever you decide for your family, choose a provider who can check as many “extras” boxes as possible.

By |2020-02-27T17:55:06+00:00March 4th, 2020|Childcare Advice|

About the Author:

Joan is a mother of six and is a writer and Local Area Representative in Providence, RI for Go Au Pair. She earned her BS in Elementary & Special Education from RI College and her MEd from Providence College. She helps lead other LARs in writing content and growing their clusters.
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