- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- sensitivity and understanding
- the ability to work on your own
- to be flexible and open to change
- the ability to work well with others
- excellent verbal communication skills
- the ability to understand people’s reactions
- thinking and reasoning skills
- the ability to monitor your own performance and that of your colleagues
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
Your day-to-day duties might include:
- feeding, bathing and dressing children, and changing nappies
- teaching basic social skills and hygiene
- providing a safe environment
- helping children to learn through play
- going out with children to widen their experiences
- doing nursery and school runs
- planning interesting things to do
- taking children to medical appointments and other activities
- organising play opportunities to help children mix with others
- preparing healthy meals and snacks
- tidying up and cleaning rooms used by the children
- record-keeping for the family
You could work at a client's home.
With qualifications and experience, you could move into childminding or nursery work.
With further training, you could become a children's nurse or early years teacher.
You'll find more details on working in childcare from the Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years and on the early years career progression map.