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After school childminders - A few questions

(17 Posts)
Possiblechildminder Wed 23-Jan-13 13:17:20

I'm thinking of becoming a childminder, initially doing school drop offs and pick ups and have a few questions.

What do the children do at the end of the day? How much do you organise activities for them, given that they've just done a full day at school?

Do you give them their tea? If so, is it a proper meal or something light like soup, cheese on toast etc?

Also, what time do you finish and do you charge an hourly rate according to what time the child is collected or a flat rate per afternoon regardless of what time they go home?

Thanks for your help.

NickNacks Wed 23-Jan-13 13:22:49

I tend to lay things out rather than organise activities. Things like beads, drawing, crafts, board games, packs of cards keep them amused. If not I not I don't mind the tv on for a bit.

I cook a proper meal and dessert plus a aback when they get in from school.

I charge a set price for the whole session.

NickNacks Wed 23-Jan-13 13:23:25

Oh I finish at 6pm

Xroads Wed 23-Jan-13 13:28:16

My after schoolers are like part of our family, they have all been here since before they started school on a full time basis so they feel very at home here, they know where everything is and on the way home we chat about what to do when we get in, it depends how they feel sometimes they want to ice cakes, do colouring, watch a film, play outside, play a game etc

I do a cooked dinner anything from pasta sauce and garlic bread to a roast dinner, pudding can be fruit, yogurt or biscuits etc

I collect at 3.15 from 1 school and 3.30 at another school, get in about 3.50pm they start going home at 5.30 - 6pm and I charge £10 per day regardless of the hours used unless it's a snow day. teacher training, holiday then it's £25.


Possiblechildminder Wed 23-Jan-13 13:55:56

Thanks Nicknacks and Xroads, really helpful. Would the children ever do their homework with you, or is that something they always do with parents?

NickNacks Wed 23-Jan-13 14:05:12

Mine don't but they are all still quite small so just have reading to do which the parents seem happy for me to leave to them.

badgerhead Wed 23-Jan-13 14:21:26

I have children before & after school. It varies as to which days they come, some do b/s only & other a/s only & a couple do both. Also some are term time only. I charge £5 per hour with a minimum of 1 hour per session even if they arrive after 8 and leave before 4.15.

I provide breakfast to a pair of siblings if they need it, they arrive between 7.15 & 7.30, a snack after school & an evening meal for those who want it, but they don't eat until 5 to 5.15 so is really only suitable for those who stay late.

Activity wise, I don't really plan but do occasionally have a specific craft item available for them to do if they wish, e.g. Christmas, Easter, Mother's or Father's Day. There is always lego, k-nex, puzzles, books and games available for them & they love being in the garden on my large climbing frame/playhouse & kicking a ball around.

I walk the children to & from school 97% of the time & use my minibus rarely for the school run, I think they need the walk to run off energy on wet play days and it gives us a chance to chat about their day at school, what they have done at home in the evenings/weekends.

The older children especially sometimes ask to use the computer to research information for their homework or to print something off, especially if they don't have ready access to a pc &/ printer at home, also they sometimes 'forget' to do their homework so panic in the morning that they haven't done or finished it & it is due in that day!

I start at 7.15 & finish most nights at 6, although last night was 6.45 due to snow & traffic jams. Also in the last three school days I have collected early twice from school, this is because on friday it shut at 11 am due to snow, Monday it was shut again because of snow & yesterday at noon due to a proper gas leak (not the French smell). Both times I have text around all my school parents to find out who needed their child collecting & have brought them home for collection by the parents when required, fortunately it hasn't taken me over my numbers and the parents have all been very grateful.

nokidshere Wed 23-Jan-13 14:21:58

all the children I collect from school have been with me since they were a few months old. all but one is now over 7 and most are over 10.

They do their own thing. The boys like the computer if the weather is to bad for the garden, the younger girls draw and write stories, The older girls slob in front of the tv or do homework. Sometimes we all play a game together or simply natter about school and friends etc.

We all sit down to eat a full cooked meal at about 5pm and they have all gone by 6. I charge £4 per hour.

Runoutofideas Wed 23-Jan-13 14:26:18

I have 3 after school today as well as my own 2 - ages 8,7,6,5,and 1 - all girls (by coincidence). The older 4 will generally charge off together to my dds bedroom and dress up in dressing up clothes or each others clothes and play highly complex role play games. This leaves me to look after the baby and cook tea.

Tonight they are having pork chops, potatoes and veg. We often have pasta, or other relatively simple, but hot meal. 2 mindees go home at 5.30 and the last one at 6. I charge £5 per hour, for whatever hours they are booked in for - so the 6 O'clocker pays for half an hour more than the 5.30s. It works for me. If they were going home before 5 I wouldn't include tea though.

Mum2Luke Wed 23-Jan-13 17:10:39

I want to go back to work out of the house, my son will be 11 in March and says he doesn't want to go to a childminder because 'its babyish' 'I won't be able to go to my friends to play' and 'there are always annoying kids' (I used to be a childminder so I can see his point) but he is not old enough to be left on his own especially in the school holidays. I have no parents or Parents in law nearby to help with childcare but if I stay in the dinner lady job I am going to go mad as I feel I didn't work for hours to do my NVQ Level 3 to wash tins in a school kitchen.

We won't get help with childcare so paying a childminder for holidays is going to cost the earth, really don't know what to do. I let him play on his XBox with school friends/football team friends only for 2 hours when he has finished school and then he must do his homework even if it doesn't have to be in for the next week, am very strict he does reading and practises his spellings and writing too during the week as he has his SATs in May.

Would anyone leave an 11 year old on his own from 7 till 8.30 and 3 till 6? When he goes to high school he has to be there for 8.25 and he will probably be doing sports and homework after or is he too young? I think he is but DH thinks he is old enough. hmm

nokidshere Wed 23-Jan-13 19:36:02

I have "children" of 10-15 years coming here after school. They like hanging out together. I don't let them on the x-box but I do let them use the computers. But often they make up games and stuff by themselves or using equipment from around the house.

If you find the right childminder it need not be a pain for your child. I have at least 4 10+yrs children each day and they enjoy the interaction.

nokidshere Wed 23-Jan-13 19:36:41

sorry meant to say no I wouldn't leave my 11 year old alone for more than 30mins to an hour.

Xroads Thu 24-Jan-13 07:45:08

mum2luke - could you change jobs but work term time only say as a TA or school admin?

Mum2Luke Thu 24-Jan-13 16:18:57

I work as a dinner lady in the school kitchen, its very hard to get TA jobs where I live ( its hard to get jobs sad even if you are qualified, I also have NCFE Cert in supporting Teaching and learning in schools but am in competition with many others who have more experience than I have unfortunately.

As the local council is not making anyone permanent due to cuts, I will have to stay as a casual which means sometimes I get no work unless people are ill, go to funerals/children off school etc

Mum2Luke Thu 24-Jan-13 16:23:32

Having been a childminder (gave up due to too many private nurseries opening up and hardly any business) I know where he is coming from, he has had to share me since he was a baby with the attentions of toddlers and other children. I would leave him with a childminder friend though as he could play with her son.

Possiblechildminder Thu 24-Jan-13 19:49:39

Hope you get it sorted mum2luke.

Thanks for the answers everyone. It gives me an idea of how it all works.

fudgesmummy Sat 26-Jan-13 14:43:04

I look after up to 8 children after school every night. I charge £5.25 p/h before 6-30 and £6.25 p/h after. The children are happy to watch the tv, play games or go on the internet on the i-pad,laptop or kindle fire,play on the DS or wii. I have coloring pens and paper/coloring books available for them to use or they like to play with what is out for the little ones-cars,garage,toy cooker etc! In the summer they all like to pay in the garden. When we get in from school they have a drink and biscuit/homemade cake.
I cook a meal every night-spag bog,carbonara,pizza,jacket pot with cheese and beans,sausage and mash type of thing and charge £2.00 a meal

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