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New Childminder

(19 Posts)
mum2oliver Thu 05-May-05 21:00:55

need advice on how to get business. I only received my certificate last wk and I know it takes time but any advice on how to get myself out ther as Im so looking forward to it!
I find it hard to believe that people who have never heard of me will call.What are the best ways to make them feel comfortable?
Im just dead nervous! I have my ds 14 months old.
Will they be put off that im new and if so what can I say to make it ok?

lunavix Thu 05-May-05 21:02:46

Me being new hasn't put anyone off so far.. although I have had only two calls!

I'm a bit disappointed the markets dead for childcare around here atm.. but the two families I've met have both been lovely. I've been upfront about my lack of cm experience (and highlighted my parenting experience ) and they've been fine.

I am a little nervous about having older mindees, ds is nearly 13 months so strictly speaking I don't have experience any older than that

KatieMac Thu 05-May-05 21:03:58

I'm sorry Mum2oliver, I'm really tired tonite......I'll get back to you over the weekend...I've had a horrid day

Congratulations on getting your certificate, have you done your ICP yet (can't remember) think of situations with older children (as you obviously have exp of babies)

Catch you soon

mum2oliver Thu 05-May-05 21:11:30

ok katiemac,thank you.
Lunafix,have they come back to you with a decision?
Need experience with older children.Have arranged two mornings a week at local school to gain it.
Need to start working asap really though.
Its apparently slow here too.Kettering,Northants.Where are you roughly?

lunavix Thu 05-May-05 21:18:02

I'm in west berkshire, trouble is there is a ton of childminders, a few nurseries.... all with vacancies!

THe first family declined, they wanted a CM who had no children of their own, or any minded children as they felt they'd be most comfortable with one on one attention for their dd.

THe second signed the contract on the spot, I've been minding their dd now for 2 weeks and they said today they couldn't be happier!

I'm thinking of volunteering at local preschool, after school club etc to gain a bit of experience, but really I could do with some vacancies filled! My mindee is only here 2 mornings a week, it's a start though, I could really do with a full time mindee though, then I could quit my evening job and concentrate on the children

KatieMac Fri 06-May-05 21:12:04

Are you advertising yet?

Places like Local PO, school, churches, talk to librarians, HV, Midwives, teachers.

Join M&T groups, be friendly not pushy - don't volunteer info, say you're a C/Mer if asked.

Be honest on the phone...say you're nervous

Have you got that list of Q to ask a c/mer from down the list? If not print it off and give it to your prospective parents?

And if you don't get the first people who see you don't worry it happens...the couple who came today to interview me will probably go else where....but I feel that if they don't like my set up or me & my hubby - more fool them

mum2oliver Sun 08-May-05 21:20:40

What questions are they then?
Soz been away.Have advertised in local shops but need to do a ltittle more.

KatieMac Sun 08-May-05 21:38:49

These are Alibubbles questions....If you are feeling particularily insecure you could add in your own answers.....Or just use it as a prompt
"How long have you been working with children?

What training have you had? Any qualifications? Are you part of a network, achieved a quality assurance qualification, look at registration certificate, insurance details, business use for car. First aid must be no more than 3 years old, food hygiene certificate, Certificate in Childminding practice or NVQ 3, Contracts and record forms

Do you enjoy being with children and why?

Can I look around, see the rooms and outside play space? If there is no outside play space - how will you make sure my child gets the chance to play outside?

Where will my child rest?

What kind of food and drink will you give? Can I see a menu?

What will my child do all day?

How do you encourage good behaviour?

Will my child be with a regular group of children? How old are they? How will their timetable fit in with my child?

How will you make sure I know how my child is getting on?

What hours is she open?

How much does she charge?

What about when my child is sick, holidays, days off

What do you do in an emergency?

When was her last Ofsted, can you see the report?

Top 10 Quality Pointers

When you visit possible childcare options, look for these Quality Pointers:

Are the children calm, safe, happy and busy?

Do children play and talk together?

Is the childminder listening to the children and answering them carefully?

Is the childminder friendly and proud of her work?

Is she joining in joining in with what the children are doing?

Are there lots of fun activities planned to help children learn and play? Can children plan some of these activities themselves?

Are there plenty of clean toys and equipment for children to use?

Is the premises clean, well kept and safe for children with a fun outside play area (or will the child go to parks and other places regularly)?

Do parents have plenty of chances to say what they want for their children?

If there are other things you want to know, don't be afraid to ask. Good childminders expect you to ask questions and will be happy to answer them.

Always take up references. You could ask for names of other parents to talk to about the service

Listen to your child and find out more if he/she is unhappy
Always trust your own feelings about your childcare - you know your child best "

What do you think

KatieMac Sun 08-May-05 21:41:45

Think about your adverts - what sort of impression are you aiming for? - what sort of shop have you advertised in? - Is your ad neat/clean/tidy/informative? - does it stand out? - does it highlight your best points...the things you are proud of ?

alibubbles Mon 09-May-05 11:52:49

Make sure the CIS know you have vacancies, how many and what you are looking for. They casn be your best ally when looking for children. Get on friendly terms with them, call them and chat, they are generally pretty helpful.

I know when I met them face to face at an exhibition they were really pleased to meet me and that thery knew my name and all about me!

bigdonna Tue 10-May-05 13:29:02

My health visitor passed on my number.good luck

lunavix Tue 10-May-05 13:34:24

OKay so far I have now had three phone calls since starting.

2 out of the 3 have seen my ad I stuck up around our village, one was in a card shop, the other in the childrens centre (parents drop in play area thing).

2 out of the 3 also got my number from the CIS (one saw my ad then saw me in the CIS) which is the childcarelink place, they both liked I was first on the list (this is something I do which is a bit cheeky, constantly updating my ad so I'm top! But it works!)

Diddle Fri 13-May-05 14:25:28

mum2oliver - I have been a cm for 2 years now and it started off very slowly, i had one child for 1 day a week which was lovely. I have no children of my own so do not have parenting experince, although i am a qualified nursery nurse. I'm 24. i did work experience with college, then went into a management role in retail, then worked in a nursery for a few months. So i really didn't have loads of experience, especially with older children as i specialised in babies at nursery.
But if you're honest with the families who contact you then you should get a good response, if you're confident with it, then they will feel confident with you.
I was worried that my age would put people off, i was 22 at the time, and looked like i was 18. and the fact that i wasn't a parent.
But i now look after 15 different children over a week. I'm almost full and earning plenty of money.
There are busy a quiet times in my areas, i find that i get a lot of calls coming upto the 6 wks hols from school and coming upto September. It will pick up for you.

I advertised where i knew a toddler group was or tumble tots is held, and in the local library. I also did a leaflet drop around me estate which proved a good way of advertising.

Lunavix - I can't believe a family wanted one on one care for their child, from a CM with no children of their own. That will be hard for them. They would be better off with a nanny.

mum2oliver Fri 13-May-05 19:54:32

Thank you so much for all this advice.
I had a parent come the other day.I met my network cm in a group and she has been so helpful!She recommended her.She is also going on holiday and has recommended me to another parent to cover.
Im also due to start as a voluntary classroom assistant on mon for 2 days a week.
Its all going well and Iv learnt alot from the interview the other day.She didnt ask many questions but it has still warned me that I need to be a little bit better prepared.
Oh and im attending a song and sign, and a equal opportunity workshop in the next week.

KatieMac Fri 13-May-05 20:55:31

Try and find out what the network lady is going to ask you about - then read up that part of the standards or even buy the NVQ book (or borrow it from a library) so you can read in a bit more detail

Good luck with your courses

mum2oliver Mon 16-May-05 20:05:25

Iv had 2 calls today.Lady coming on Thurs. Is it ok to sit there with folder and write loads of things down?Dont want to give off wrong vibes and look too serious!I suppose it is ok.Its just hard to imagine what I would expect as I have chosen to be a stay at home mum so I just cant imagine sending my ds to anyone.
Im dead nervous.This is the one I really want as she is going back to work part time then progressing onto full time.She also has 2 older children which need after school care.Perfect for me!
Does anyone know this....If I have my ds's car seat in front of car then a car seat in rear and then 2 children without car seats next to car seat in rear,is this legal?
My car is a citroen C3,so quite small! Im only asking because, with a car seat in rear of car it doesnt leave alot of room,so is it still safe?

NannyL Mon 16-May-05 20:10:43

it is "legal" to have children in the sitting back without car seats, tho it is NOT safe.

Adult seat belts are designed for Adults, people over 150cm and /or 36 kg, NOT children

in the event of an accident children who are sitting in adult seatbelts alone are more likely to suffer seriouce injuries especially in their pelvis / spinal area.

An adult seat belt is obvioulsy much better than no seat belt, but a car seat is SO MUCH SAFER, and if in a crash they are less likely to suffer seriouse injury.

Its for this reason that in may 2006 they are trying to bring in new European law so that ALL children under 11 and under 36 kg and 150 cm legally HAVE to be on a proper child / booster seat appropriate to their weight.

KatieMac Mon 16-May-05 21:11:17

Mum2oliver- write things down - explain that you are a bit nervous and want to remember as much as possible.

But, NannyL is right - If they are under 11 or under 1.5m (about 5 ft) they must be in a booster seat. The NCMA have advised that the expect all C/Mers to use boosters for older children.

Could you put the car seat in the middle on the lap belt with a booster each side? Or are the older children tall enough for just a seatbelt?

ssd Fri 20-May-05 13:49:25

How did you get on mum2oliver?

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