Child, Family

Nanny: everything families need to know

Nanny: everything families need to know

How do you find a good nanny? What you should note / know:

Going back to work is important for many parents today even before elementary school. After all, one’s own family must be financially secure, which in some cases can only be achieved with two incomes. Parents then need reliable care, but they cannot always find free places in day-care centers. A childminder can help.

Nanny: What is behind the job description

Childminders are skilled caregivers who tend to care for children in their own homes. Occasionally, childminders also rent special rooms in which it is easier to look after a group of children. In contrast to municipal or church day care centers, childminders usually work alone and accordingly look after fewer children.

How do nannies have to qualify?

Becoming a childminder requires expertise. The qualification and examination regulations for day care workers stipulate how the training should take place and what content is essential. Prospective childminders have to prove themselves in a preparatory course and the subsequent basic qualification.

The training comprises around 160 hours of instruction, in which the trainees learn everything to do with childcare, nutrition, upbringing and child health. A first aid course is also necessary in order to be able to work safely later on. Only trained educators and primary school teachers are allowed to work in day care without participating in the qualification.

After the training and before the start, the youth welfare office also checks whether the premises are suitable for childcare. Childminders have to offer important points such as accident prevention, hygiene and a stimulating environment.

Advantages and disadvantages compared to day care centers

There are both advantages and possible disadvantages to being cared for by a childminder. Parents should therefore consider carefully whether this model meets their expectations and, if in doubt, seek advice.

Benefits include:

  • smaller groups of children
  • only one caregiver for the child
  • often more flexible care times
  • a single point of contact for parents

Parents of smaller children in particular appreciate these advantages, because childminders can better monitor the child’s development and also react to special needs. Children with separation anxiety usually feel more comfortable with childminders because the caregivers do not change.

Disadvantages that can arise:

  • lack of replacement if the childminder falls ill
  • often higher costs
  • Loss of care during vacation
  • less free places due to small groups

As far as the downsides go, the main pain point is the availability of day care. Parents can remedy the situation by inquiring in advance about a possible substitution solution. Occasionally childminders use a stable network that allows for emergency care in case of doubt.


Tips for finding a nanny

Parents who want to have their child looked after by a childminder should first find out which providers are available in their city or region. Since youth welfare offices in some regions consciously promote the settlement of childminders, it can be easier there. If this is not the case, online portals will help you with the search.

In the conversation with the nanny, the following questions should be clarified:

  1. Which care time models are offered?
  2. Can the times also be adjusted spontaneously and flexibly?
  3. How big is the group of children?
  4. What age range is currently catered for?
  5. What philosophy does the childminder follow when it comes to raising children?
  6. How are sickness and holidays regulated?
  7. What are the costs for care and meals?
  8. Is there a non-binding trial offer?
  9. What is the adjustment period like?

If the chemistry between parents and childminder is right, a solid qualification can be proven and if the ideas of the parents in terms of care and education match those of the childminder, nothing stands in the way of a nice childcare time. If this is not the case, parents should better look for an alternative, because suitable childcare is essential for a happy family life.


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