Child care providers are professionals responsible for observing, nurturing and providing day-to-day care to children of varied age groups. If you have the potential to deliver both affection and attention to children, then this career is meant for you. Tailor your resume for a child care provider job with the following page which will help you get started.
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Job duties of a child care provider
Modern parents love child care providers because they help them raise their kids in a nurturing environment. With more parents working full-time jobs, employment opportunities and prospects for child care providers are plentiful. Child care workers have very flexible opportunities as they can work full-time or part-time in private households and in day care centers or schools. Their job responsibilities vary depending on the age and needs of the children.
Here are some of their primary duties:
Watching over children around the clock and attending to their basic needs like feeding, dressing and maintaining cleanliness.
Helping them explore and learn through various fun activities like music, reading and storytelling, all while ensuring their safety.
Planning learning activities.
Notifying parents about child development in person and online and bringing up any issues that need attention.
Assisting children with homework.
Accompanying children to school, sports clubs and doctor’s appointments.
Educational requirements for child care providers
According to data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median hourly salary of a child care worker in the United States is $12.24.
Top skills for child care providers
Providing child care is more than just fun. To join this growing industry you need specific skills that every recruiter looks for in a child care provider.
Below are the qualities a successful child care provider must have:
- Ability to tutor using new and creative ideas: Child care work requires you to assist children with their academic activities, such as helping them with assignments and reviewing essential skills like reading and writing. To manage these tasks seamlessly, prepare customized schedules, you may use Google calendar or TimeTree for you and the parents to keep track of activities. One problem you may face is that children get bored quickly, so you must be creative to keep them physically and mentally engaged. One way to stay excited is by integrating toys, books and arts and crafts into their regular study routine.
- Exceptional interactive skills: You need to have excellent speaking skills to manage and communicate with children. Your ability to deliver good verbal instructions for teaching and explaining things to the child helps them learn new skills. At the same time, your practical way of communicating will be handy when discussing behavior with parents.
- Composed demeanor: Each child goes through different stages of growth; this may lead to impromptu tantrums or having to explain things repeatedly. Your ability to stay calm and steady is essential for the children’s emotional development. You have to explain things to children like directions and rules and comfort them. As a child care provider you will have to communicate with parents to keep them well-informed and show that their child is well cared for.
- Quick decision-making ability: You have to monitor children endlessly to ensure their well-being. There can be unexpected, complex situations when you have to make quick decisions and handle emergencies. Using your knowledge, you should know the allergies of the children you care for and how to avoid putting them in harmful situations and combat instances of injuries while they play. Training programs like the United States Environmental Protection Agency can help you learn how to tackle these types of situations, including pest infestations at a child care center, for example.
- Physical stamina and endurance: Children have a lot of energy and you need to be able to match their energy to care for them. If you can’t keep up with the children in your care, you won’t be able to manage them and give them the patience and attention they need. You should expect to be on your feet and in motion for most of the day, escorting children to and from home to school and any extracurricular activities they scheduled.
- Organizational skills: Depending on the work environment, child care providers may also be responsible for organizing and maintaining a safe learning space, planning events for the children and keeping up with multiple schedules if there is more than one child in the household or day care. Developing your ability to get and stay organized will help you manage the administrative tasks of your job.
- Specialized child care skills, including the Montessori Method: Montessori schooling differs from traditional care or preschools. The Montessori method emphasizes cognitive structure when formal education emphasizes habitual and repetitive lesson learning. The children are active participants in learning under Montessori schooling instead of passive listeners with the teacher as the active role in the classroom.
Montessori teachers gain further education and certifications before teaching at a Montessori school; you’ll need to complete training at an accredited Montessori center to become part of the Motessori program. These associations provide lists of recommended and approved training centers, such as the Association Montessori International, the American Montessori Society, the International Montessori Council, and the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education.
Child care providers education, certifications and license
DegreeChild care providers need a minimum qualification of a high school diploma or its equivalent. But some employers and parents may prefer candidates with an associate or bachelor's degree in early childhood education, English Literature or associated degree.
LicensureThe license requirements of child care providers in the U.S. vary from one state to another. The National Association for Family Child Care Accreditation is a great way to become a nationally recognized child care provider. You have to have a transparent background and meet minimum training, immunization, hygienic and safety norms to qualify for it. The National Child Care Association is another platform that offers licenses to aspiring child care providers across the U.S.
CertificationsEmployers in many states want child care workers to obtain certifications from nationally recognized child development organizations such as The Child Development Associate (CDA) Certification is the most sought-after credential provided by the Council for Professional Recognition. This certification program includes 120 hours of child care classroom study and 480 hours of working experience with children. To obtain this certification, one must pass the exam every three years.
The Child Care Professional (CCP) Certification or CCP credential offered by the National Early Childhood Program Accreditation can also help you prosper as a child care provider. To qualify for CCP, you must have a high school diploma, prior work experience in child care and a passing score on the national early childhood education specialist credential exam.
Each of these programs will give you deep insight into different aspects of child care practices, including establishing a safe and learning environment. You will gain expertise in fostering physical childcare providers. Possessing this certification helps you better understand the social, emotional and cognitive development of children.
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and first aid certification is another crucial certification. It helps you show employers your ability to tackle emergency health situations effectively.
Child care providers resume-writing tips
Since child care is vital for a child’s growth, recruiters are very discerning when hiring for this position. So when you’re writing your resume, make sure you keep your focus on education, your specific job skills and your work experience.
We recommend you follow the tips below to create a captivating resume:
- Include a good summary statement: Grab a hiring manager’s attention with an impressive heading and a quick overview of your training, your prior job experience and your unique talents. This section should be placed on the top of your resume page and should not exceed more than five lines. This statement will convince the recruiter you are the right candidate for the position and ensure they will read the rest of your resume.
For instance, a remarkably talented child care provider with good interpersonal skills and the ability to provide valuable attention to children of varied age groups will use specific examples of their previous work:
“Five years of experience as a babysitter at ABC Center with nationally-recognized Child Care Professional (CCP) credentials.”
“Provided a safe, productive and fun experience for children.”
- Create a comprehensive list of special skills: In the skills section of your resume, focus on the qualities you possess that are beneficial for the job. The best way to do this is by going through the job description and determining which of your strengths match the position. You will need to prepare for your interview to explain how and where you used your mentioned skills previously. Examples of some of the skills you should add are “quick decision-making abilities to handle emergencies” and “excellent teacher of writing and communication to small children.”
- Highlight professional history: Follow a reverse chronological order with the most recent job on the top to list down all your former job responsibilities in bullet points. This section must include your previous job titles, company name, how long you worked there and job duties. We recommend using action verbs to begin your sentences, such as “Prepared baby food during meal times” and “Taught children activities like drawing and rhyming.”
- Finish off the resume with your education, certifications and achievements: This section plays an essential role in your resume by differentiating you from other people. Always mention your most recent and the highest schooling or certification at the top. By reading through your education and experience a recruiter should know that your academics match the job position’s requirements.
While writing your accomplishments, try to quantify them to give the hiring manager an overview of your strengths, such as “Awarded child care provider of the month for six consecutive months.” Awards and honors encourage the recruiter to consider an application.
What are the working hours for a child care provider?
The working hours of a child care provider differ from part-time to full-time and depend on the employer. Working hours will follow standard business hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. if they work in a day care facility or preschool. Live-at-home workers or nannies have to work beyond the regular business hours and may include overnight and weekend hours depending on the schedule of the household.
Why are CCP and CDA credentials essential to become a child care provider?
Candidates with Child Care Professional (CCP) and Child Development Associate (CDA) certifications are the most professional caretakers because they have met nationally recognized standards of expertise in early childhood education.
What are the benefits of becoming a child care provider?
The most significant benefit of becoming a child care provider is the gratification you get. You know you are providing a healthy learning environment for children and when you watch them grow under your care, you get a sense of joy and satisfaction. Other benefits may include health insurance packages, primarily if you work full time at schools or day care centers. Child care providers who live at home may not get as many benefits from the supporting family but may receive higher wages.
When should I renew the CDA credential?
The CDA credential is valid only for three years. You must apply for its renewal at least six months before the date of expiration. You can submit the renewal application online or through the mail.