Home ed & childminding. Routine? How do you keep on top of it all?(17 Posts)
I have 2 boys, one 6 years old who is HE and one 4yrs old who is at Kindy part time. One dp who is out of the house 12 hours a day for work.
I need to start earning for a while (at least a year) and so am becoming a childminder to allow me to earn and stay at home with the dc but I'm worried about how I'm going to keep on top of everything.
Dp definitely does pull his weight around the house as often as he is able but let's face it, I'm the one at home so mostly it falls to me.
How do others do it? He'ing, Childcare, keeping on top of the housework, getting dinner on the table etc.
At the moment we're just kinda winging it as we go along but with the possibility of 2 more children coming to us, I need a plan.
I don't want to sound harsh but I would not use a cm who was he their own child. Unless you are he someone else's child the children you look after will be younger and I just can't see it working.
Could you look at advertising for mindees who are also home educated but whose parents need to work out of the home for a while? I don't think I'd chose a childminder who was home educating because I'd be worried about how the attention was decided, but the reverse of that is that you may be a perfect fit for a family who want to HE but can't be at home all week right now.
I think it would be better to provide care to other home edding families who might want a setting sensitive to t heir ideals 1 or 2 days a week?
I wouldn't use a childminder who was home educating their own child as I would worry they would be trying to meet their school aged children's needs instead of my children.
I agree with the others that you'd probably be better off getting home educated mindees.
I might use you if you were not expensive actually, if I worked part time only for example, didn't have my own older dc's, and you did home ed community activities set up for younger sibs to come too.
Don't worry! There is indeed an entire subculture of he childminders and mindees. Also, the he community is completely geared towards mixing age groups to everyone's mutual benefit rather than segregating them. Different philosophy.
I don't know exactly how we get everything done. I'm not a child minder, but I do work full time.flexi time around home education. Batch cooking and freezing. Leaving cleaning and tidying until my children are willing to join in. Getting out of the house to parks, groups etc.as much as possible (keeps the house quite clean!). Making activities available for children to engage with at their own level rather than being the cabaret. Bursts of concentrated attention on one child when the opportunity arises (kind of.fills up their self esteem and launches them cheerfully into independent play for a bit).
Oh, involving children in shopping (can be a really fun activity treated right), but.also doing the boring weekly shop online. Involving children in food prep, harvesting veg from the garden etc. It can all be a bit Continuum Concept if that floats your boat.
Sorry, I'm not asking if you would use a HE'ing childminder, as I've already said in my post, I have a family with 2 children coming to see me next week about care. I'm working through an agency so the parents will already know about me HE'ing before they decide to see me.
I was asking those that HE their own children AND do childminding for routine they use or tips to make it all work smoothly.
Thank you ommmward for the helpful reply.
We already do various HE activities that mindees can join in with so that's good, getting out the house often is something I'm definitely going to do weather permitting (winter here now). I guess I can draw up a rough routine and tweak as necessary.
Do you know what ages the mindees are? If they are 3-5 age group I can't see that your childminding day would be much different from a regular HE day really- lots of fun 'learning' through play type activities and trips out to the park or groups etc. Only difference is there will be 4 instead of 2. If the mindees are younger than say 2, you may need to adapt it a bit to suit their different needs, but not a whole lot I'd imagine as plenty of people manage with that range of ages among their own children anyway.
I'm assuming that your 6 year old doesn't do much in the way of formal, sit down work during a normal day. But if he does I'd be inclined to keep that to the times when your mindees are not around (evening or early morning) or if they are littles, while they nap, so that you can give him 1:1 attention during those times.
Other than that I think its just all the extra paperwork and planning etc. that goes with childminding, on top of the day to day running of the household. I'm sure the answer to that is to be super efficient and organised, but i can't advise on that aspect as I'm rubbish at it and I only have my own two DC at home!
Thank you for that Melamine
I've been told the kids are baby and pre-school age so I'm guessing under 1 and 3/4.
Ds1 does do some sit down work but usually on a Saturday morning as he prefers to do that type of thing with daddy. Our weekdays are usually out somewhere in the morning, HE groups, park, beach, museums, zoo, bush walks, bike rides etc and afternoons filled with reading, puzzles, gardening, baking, arts and crafts, playdough, Lego. So lots of stuff mindees can join in with or I can adapt to them.
At the moment I can quite happily leave my 2 for a hour or so during the day to play by themselves while I do housework and then again late afternoon to start preparing dinner. I won't be able to that quite so much with mindees here as well so I guess being very organised is the key to make sure it doesn't all get too much to keep on top of.
I'm not even sure what hours the parents are looking for at the moment, I'm going on them wanting full time and not knowing how I'm going to fit it all in but they might only want 3 days in which case I'm worrying for nothing.
It's nice to get an idea of what other people do though.
I'm a childminder and I home ed my kids. I couldn't do it full time tbh but working part time is perfect for me at the moment. When I have older children I usually leave some craft stuff out and they have access to all the toys so they generally run off and play without much interference from me! I can keep on top of the mess on these days. With younger children/babies I obviously have to spend more time keeping a close eye on the little one and the 'helpful' older ones that want to carry her around! I clear up lunch stuff and do a quick tidy up of toys while the little one naps.
I've never had any parents mention the h.e negatively, they all seem to be happy that their children can socialise with children from all walks of life. I think you just have to make it clear that you aren't recreating school at home which is maybe what the people that said they wouldn't use a h.e childminder are concerned about.
I childmind, HE, have schoolies and foster. Fortunately I have a hubby who is around half the time and fortunately I enjoy paperwork. It is very long hours. It is being flexible and grabbing time when it appears, to do the formal HE book studying. It is accepting that even after all the long hours, my profit from childminding is below minimum wage. It is accepting that I have to do loads of tidying and extra housework and still end up with a battered and untidy house. It is going the extra mile and updating cm training in the eves or weekends. It is attending meetings, both fostering and cming. Sometimes it is realizing I really haven't got time to do a proper shop this week. I repaint my entrance hall every 9 months. I spend time looking for new toys and resources. I have gotten really good at multi-tasking.
I really really enjoy it all.
You must organize and then organize again. You might set yourself a schedule for all the cm paperwork and you might set times to do formal HE work. You will learn that any activity can include learning opportunities for all ages. (If you are new to the world of cm - we have to "teach" the EYFS from birth to year 1 of school. So all HE outings count towards those learning experiences once you know how to adapt them to different ages)
Just to show you it can work (but it is a lot of work):
I am rated as Outstanding childminder by Ofsted - 3 times in a row
Hubby and I are on the highest level with our Foster Agency
Our schoolies are in A streams and are on the gifted register
Our HE child is doing Gcse's and is due to get B's and A's
The key is to be flexible but organized so that stuff does actually get done.
I didn't talk about the actually money figures.
I once made £21,000 in a year by being really full and doing 4 overnights a week as well for 2 children but that was before I did HE.
Now I earn around £12,000 because I limit my numbers of children and don't do overnights or weekends, but that is still a 10.5 hour day with mindees here, 2-3 kids a day. But on top of those 52.5 hours a week is all the hours of paperwork, training, mentoring, resource shopping, extra cleaning, tidying.
There is also an outlay to start childminding:
registration with Ofsted
registration with a cm group (optional)
3rd party insurance
specialist house and car insurance (around double your current insurance costs)
a medical with your GP
registration with EHO as a food business (your council may be free)
registration with ICO as a holder of data
extra payments for being a taxi (if your council class cm as a taxi= rare)
planning permission if more than 6 children (incl your own) are ever in the house
initial work to pass a safety inspection eg safety film on glass doors
car seats/buggies/highchairs/cutlery/changing mats/ etc..
payments to websites to advertise (if used)
play resources (toys must be multi cultural and a varied mix incl wooden)
Sorry I seem to be creating a monologue.
Despite the worries of others on this thread, I have never had any problems getting clients. They don't mind that I HE. Some have had long discussions with me about the benefits of HE and have looked into it for themselves. In fact people are either neutral about it or most see it as a positive attribute, that our household is so pro education.
But Dinosaur, it is hard work. It is not the easy option. I get up at 5.50am and I am doing some job or other until 9pm. Don't let the paperwork get behind or it will sit on your shoulder like some irritating monkey causing worry and even sleepless nights. Get yourself into some group or network so that you can keep abreast of new innovations and law changes. In recent years cms have had at least 2 new tasks each year. This last year we have had to declare all allergens in the food we provide and a new scheme called flexicare (for teens) has been introduced. It is easy to get left behind in the constant stream of changes and the inspections are becoming more difficult to pass. If you want a "good" grade (and you do otherwise they keep hassling you to improve) you must learn how to deliver the EYFS to a good standard.
Gone are the days when women(or men) could earn some pin money by simply keeping kids safe. Now it has to be your PASSION to help those kids achieve their potential and if you happen to get paid for it, well that's just a happy bonus. That's the plain fact of the industry. Parents may see cms as a huge cost to them, but after expenses, we don't earn big money. We do it because we love to care.
Oh for anyone interested I also found out the cost of the level 3 diploma which you must sign up for when you begin to childmind.(unless you have an equivalent/higher childcare qualification)
The 2 year course is £1199 but councils may subsidize this so ours only costs £299
The compulsory registrations add up to £105 pa
The doc and planning permissions could be aprox £300 (a one off fee)
Depending on your circumstances you will need £1000 to £1500 for your set up and first year. It becomes expensive to just dip into childminding to bridge a financial gap.
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