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(12 Posts)
clare1980 Wed 16-Mar-05 13:27:04

I am going back to work and am in need of a childminder but i have never left my dd wiv anybody but family and i dont know what i have to look for or ask when i find one so any help you can give will be great

lunavix Wed 16-Mar-05 13:32:51

They have to be Ofsted registered (should have a certificate on the wall) and also have public liability insurance.

Look for someone you are happy with! Someone you feel comfortable with, a clean house, happy kids, lots of ideas for keeping your dd entertained.

nailpolish Wed 16-Mar-05 13:33:54

i have a fab childminder. when looking, i got the name of 3 and went to see them all. the first was nice but her dh smoked in the kitchen so that was a no. the second was ok too but she had a perfect adult house, no toys lying about, lots of fragile ornaments etc, so i thought no. the third had already 2 children running about, well behaved but very happy looking. she had lots of toys but the house was clean and tidy. she gave me a wee tour of her house, showed me where the toilets were, the kitchen, where dd could have a nap, etc etc, she made me feel she had nothing to hide. she also asked me lots of questions too about dd which was good i thought. she then asked me for a cuddle of dd (who was 6 mths) and dd immediately fell asleep on cm's knee! ill never forget it - i knew then cm was the right person to look after dd.

cm's have to be very approachable, professional but friendly, watch what your baby does too if cm has a cuddle, you will get a good feeling if you see dd smiling or cuddling in to cm

a good website that gives good pointers is

i think its a scottish website but its still good at giving you questions to ask and things to look for

hth and good luck, a good childminder is something special

lunavix Wed 16-Mar-05 13:35:17

Ask any questions, there's a lot of registered childminders on here, and a lot of parents who use one.

Alibubbles has a list of questions to ask childminders which is fantastic...

lunavix Wed 16-Mar-05 13:35:58

What area are you in?

clare1980 Wed 16-Mar-05 13:39:34

my dd is 4 and very very lively and alot to put up wiv for some people we only need a cm for 4 hours a day and to pick her up from pre-school but she has never been left wiv a stranger b4 and i know how much of a handful she can be and i can imagine going to get her and the cm saying never again, at pre-school is is fine but our babysitter is often glad to get home after loking after her for 3 hours

lunavix Wed 16-Mar-05 13:41:38

I'm sure CMers would be used to that! Lots of children are very active and she'll probably love being around other kids! You can do a couple of trial period first, to make sure everyones happy.

clare1980 Wed 16-Mar-05 13:41:41

we are in devon but i dont know hardly anyone here as we are in process of moving here but dp knows most people but feel funny bout leaving her wiv people i dont know

nailpolish Wed 16-Mar-05 13:44:17

you need to, when you find a cm, go round to her house a few times with dd, and stay with her maybe? all play together. then the next thing would be to leave her an hour or so, break it in gently (this is what i would do anway)

if the cm is good one then she will have had experience with all sorts of different childrens personalities, im sure she would never say never again!

IME children will cry and ask you not to go etc, but as soon as you go off to work they are fine, expecially if there are other children about too. cm's keep children busy, there will be no time to miss you!

dont worry

clare1980 Wed 16-Mar-05 13:49:30

i got no probs when it comes to leaving her, when i enrolled her in pre-school here i took her in the door and she pushed me out and said i had to go cos i was embarressing her so i went and had tears cos she is growing up so fast sad aint it lol

ayla99 Wed 16-Mar-05 21:21:30

NCMA (national childminding association do a free leaflet for parents)

Ask for references (cm might have written letters from other parents and/or give you phone numbers of current/recent families she's worked with).

Their registration certificate doesn't have to be on the wall, it might be in a folder so make sure you ask to see it. Also ask to see the inspection report from Ofsted.

loads of questions here:
Questions to ask a childminder

feelingold Thu 17-Mar-05 11:27:52

As a registered childminder myself, I show all parents who come to see me a portfolio containing all of my certificates, policies on how i deal with behaviour etc, activities i plan to do over the next few weeks, my working hours and rates etc. I also try to make the parents and children feel as welcome as possible and would encourage them to ask me any questions about anything (however trivial it may seem).
I would also ask them to come and see me again when other children i mind are with me so that they can see what we do and how the other children behave.

Do not be rushed into a decision, any childminder who genually cares about what they do understands that you need to be sure about them, we know how precious children are, most of us are mums ourselves.

Do not worry about your child being left with a 'stranger', because you should make as many visits as possible to the childminders and get to know them before leaving your child full time, (build up the time you leave them bit by bit when ever possible), i have never looked after a child yet who has not settled after about the third visit.

I would also only agree your first contract for 4 weeks, then if you or your child is not happy with the childminder, you are free to not renew it, but if you are happy you can renew for a longer period.

I think you instinctively know if the childminder is right for you, i have always had an instant rapport with the parents and children i have childminded and all of the mums (and some of the dads) have become good friends.

I hope this helps and good luck.

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