As parents we spend hours if not days, weeks, months even, trying to find the right nursery to be able to give our babies the best start in life.
Have you ever thought what it takes to be a childcare practitioner?
I was invited along to spend the day in a Co-operative Childcare Nursery to see what being a childcare practitioner really involved.
Right from the moment I arrived I felt welcomed and at ease.
When starting a new job everyone suffers from nerves and you always over think what people are going to think about you and wonder if you are going to be prejudiced because of your appearance.
Here there was none of that, they accept you for you.
You already have a shared interest and that bonds you straight from the get go.
I was shown around the nursery and introduced to every member of staff, all of whom were friendly and welcoming.
I started off the morning with the 1-2 year olds and straight away I had a little buddy by my side wanting me to go and play with him. The staff were more than happy to show me what I needed to do and how they go about their day.
The room was pretty much free flow and the staff were guided by what the children needed or wanted. There are set times for nappy changes, such as before they eat lunch and before the children go down for a nap, although if the child needed a nappy change sooner a member of staff would change them.
During lunch I headed off to the 3-5 year old room (pre schoolers) where its all about getting the child to become more independent and one of the ways they do that is by letting the children help themselves to their dinner and clear away their plates once they are done.
I also spent time in the baby room, other than making me want to have more babies of my own, this room was a joy to be in.
The babies were happy and the staff were bubbly.
It was very much baby led and the staff are happy to go with the babies flow.
Spending time with a child, much like you do with your own child, you're able to pick up on the needs of the child and know what the child is wanting or needing with out them actually saying the words.
You could see the bonds between the staff and babies instantly.
As parents we know routine is key with children and even in a free flow room there is a gentle routine, helping the children feel secure. If there is a set routine at home the staff will try and stick with that whilst the child is at nursery.
A key factor to working in a nursery is that you build a good relationship with the parents as well as the child.
A lot of people may think working in a nursery is easy and anyone can do it,
"All you do is play with babies all day, what can be hard about that?"
In fact, it's probably one of the hardest jobs around. Not only are you responsible for someone else's baby you have to plan activities, write observations on the child and set key-goals to help them achieve their next milestone.
When I asked about career development all the staff said if they wanted extra training the Co-operative Childcare would be more than happy to help and find the right kind of course, if not they'd tailor a course to suit your needs.
The Co-operative Childcare as a whole seemed to get the thumbs up from everyone, they all said they were great employers and would always help when you needed it and understood if there was a problem.
I asked all the staff members what their favourite part of the job was and they all had the same answer;
"Seeing them grow and being a part of their journey from babyhood right up until they start reception."
It was lovely to be in a work place where everyone was happy and not trying to be better than the next person.
They're all there for the children, and it felt like stepping into a warm family environment where everyone is happy to see you.
If you need help there is someone there who is going to be able to help, if not they'd be able to point you in the right direction.
All the staff say its a job they love getting up for in the morning and I can see why.
A childcare practitioner wasn't a job I'd ever really thought much about, but now I can see myself applying for a role in a nursery in the not too distant future.
I would have to say seeing how a nursery works and what the staff have to do, its very easy to compare it with being a parent,.
You already know how to do the every day tasks of bringing up a child, and knowing what they want and what not to do.
You may have dabbled in finding fun activities for your little one over on Pinterest, which would help you in being able to plan fun activities to do with the nursery children.
If you can sooth your own child, soothing another will be like second nature to you.
You already have most of the skills needed to be an AMAZING childcare practitioner, why not put them into action today??!!
**This was a sponsored post
**This was a sponsored post