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How to get Childcare Experience

7 replies

MrsBW · 30/12/2012 11:50


We already know that one of our shortfalls is a lack of childcare experience.

We have some friends that we will be able to babysit for and will start doing this soon... But they are all 'well adjusted' (is that the right term?) children and we are also looking to get experience of a cross section of personalities.

Can I ask how you got the experience you needed? What were the SW looking for? I'd be especially interested to know about experience you got with challenging kids (i.e. the type that might, stereotypically, be similar to looked after children)?

For those that have successfully adopted, what, if any, experience that you gained during the process was the most useful?

Thanks for any insight you can give Thanks

OP posts:
hbr1989 · 30/12/2012 13:17

Hi, I'm not an adopter but a foster carer. I've only been approved a few weeks so the process is still fresh in my mind. In order to support my application I looked after my friends little one 3 days a week throughout the summer holidays. I also spent a lot of time with my family and friends who have children and helped in Sunday club at my church. Have you thought about volunteering at a youth group, play scheme, rainbows ior cubs? I'm sure all of these places would be eager for a helping hand. I also kept a diary where I documented all of the time that id spent with children. I gave this to my sw and it was forwarded to panel.

HarkTheHattifattnerSing · 30/12/2012 13:21

we have had potential adoptors get involved with Scouts, we always need people to help out, and you do get to see a range of behaviours!! BUt you also get a lot of fun and get to do many of the activities the kids do. You dont have to go into uniform, you can be a sectional assistant that helps regularly.

HappySunflower · 30/12/2012 14:49

I already had lots of childcare experience, but not all my adopter friends did.
Some volunteered at children's centres, others looked after the children of friends and relatives for days/weekends. We were told that having some experience of overnight care would be helpful.
Even though the children you will be having experience with may well be well adjusted, you will find that they may still present the odd challenge- for a start, being looked after by somebody different will be a change for them.

Your assessing social worker will probably want to observe you with a child or children at some point, so it's worth thinking through who you might be able to do that with.

morethanpotatoprints · 30/12/2012 23:28

I really believe that potential adopters should experience a wide variety of situations which provide challenges for dc. I volunteered (not adoption related) to work with young people aged 14-16 who were going to leave the care system. The main emphasis was to support them in learning to provide and support themselves.
Each had either a sld or barriers to learning and the work was challenging. However, seeing them achieve what we consider a simple thing like preparing a meal is so humbling and rewarding when at first you really couldn't trust many with kitchen knives.
All colleges provide these classes they are entry level. You would need a crb but that's the same for most things related to dc. I am a qualified teacher but that was not my role and I received no training so anybody could do it who had the nerve really. They always need voluntary teaching assistants.

Italiangreyhound · 31/12/2012 01:05

One person on here talked about doing a gardening club at a school close to where she worked. It meant she could it it in her work lunch hour, I think, and most schools would probably be delighted to have a volunteer come in and do work with the kids. I am guessing it could be craft or anything. My DD had a person who used to come in and do junk modelling with them. Some of these extra curricular activities might be open to all and some might be open to children who need extra support, because they are having trouble settling etc, or are having problems in school. I think if you tell the school or organisation what is you want to do and why and they can also see the benefits of another helpful adult, then you would find any school probably very happy to have you once the usual checks have been undertaken.

Italiangreyhound · 31/12/2012 01:06

PS what age do you want to adopt, most pre-schools now take children from quite a young age, something I did not know until my DD went to pre-school!

MrsBW · 03/01/2013 00:08

Thanks for all the ideas.

We're looking at 2-6

I'll start looking at places overs the next few days - thanks again!

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