Anyone who is a parent knows they need a childminder from time to time. With busy schedules and
quite often both parents working, someone to help out with the kids is imperative. But who can you
trust. One of the best avenues of attack is to hire a childminder who has been properly trained to take
care of children. If you like to work with children, this may just be the job for you particularly if you
enjoy small children. You really need to be good with children to make a good childminder. If you
enjoy playing games or reading to children and you are patient, then this may be something you could
do well. If you have children of your own, you could have parents bring their children to you which
makes it convenient for you. You might want to work in a daycare center or volunteer with another
childminder to test your skills and see how you feel about it. A little experience goes a long way here.
First off, you need to have a high school diploma or GED to get hired by a licensed childminder
facility. You might want to read books that help you to develop child-friendly skills that demonstrate
age-appropriate games and craft information. You could read about how to intervene in child spats.
Learn about common child behavior issues and how to deal with those. You’ll need to know how
many children you can take care of at one time in your own home. There are regulations that you must
follow. Generally, you can babysit up to three kids without any worry about legal issues. If you handle
more than 3 children, you will need to be licensed. If you handle a lot of children at one time, you will
have to hire other childminders to assist you. There is an expected child per adult ratio.
Each state and childminder facility has somewhat different rules.
Establish a Business Plan
A business plan is important such that you know how much money it will take to get going. You may
need to get a loan or perhaps a grant to start a daycare. You need to assess if the business is warranted
in your area, determine procedures and operating policies, how you plan to market your business and
manage it and set up a budget. You’ll have to have insurance to protect yourself and your business.
You need appropriate homeowner’s insurance to cover accidents, know CPR and basic first aide. Your
house should be inspected by the local fire marshal and make sure you have an escape plan.
Management determines how you will run your business. Generally, states have minimal qualifications
for childminders. It is a good idea to have background screenings on any one you hire to help you. A
background check should be done on you as well to reassure parents you are reputable. You don’t want
anyone guilty of child abuse or violence. Make sure to set up procedures and polices on how you plan
to run your business. A course in business management might be a good idea if you feel a little shakey
Coursework in child growth and development would be very useful. Consider health and safety
training. You must keep the children out of harm’s way and free from illness.
Program planning is all about the daycare or home environment as well as the children’s experiences.
You need to plan a design for the outdoor and indoor environment. You’ll need some form of
curriculum that can help nurture the children you take care of. Think about books, games, puzzles
etc. You’ll need to be concerned about the children’s nutritional needs. You’ll need to provide healthy
meals and appropriate snacks. Also make sure you have good communication with parents. Make sure
to get feed back from parents that promotes your business.
Check the internet for Child Care Aware Webinars, federal agencies that assist with small child care
programs (these link to state agencies), national organizations (also link to state agencies) and don’t
forget about Local Child Care Resource and Referral agencies (CCR&R). All of these sites can help
you with planning your child care business.
Susan has studied at the University of Texas Medical Branch Marine Biomedical Institute in Galveston, Texas and the University of South Florida in Tampa and received a Ph.D. in Biology with a major in Neuroscience and minors in physics and mathematics. Area of research is in brain transplantation and behavior testing with twenty years of teaching experience. Fields of interest include the physical basis of memory and learning, brain repair and regeneration as well as neuro-development. As an educator, has taught thousands of students at the college level in anatomy and physiology, biology, microbiology, marinebiology, nutrition, communications, radiography, ultrasound, mathematics and physics. She enjoys reading current scientific literature and simplifying the material making it readily available to the public.