Best Careers for Teachers: Providing Day Care And Before and After School Care
Perhaps you truly love working with children, but not necessarily in the classroom. If so, providing day care for preschoolers or before and after school care for older kids might be a perfect job option for you. As more and more parents have become two-income families, the need for quality child care has grown. As a person with full teaching credentials, you could easily be considered excellent for the job. Whether you would need additional training or certification depends on where you work and how many children you will care for.
Day care workers shoulder a great deal of responsibility. After all, when a parent turns his son or daughter over to you, it implies a huge amount of trust. It will be your job, for several hours a day, to meet that child's basic needs, from physical and emotional to intellectual and social. Clearly the needs of infants are different than those of older children. For the youngest set, your job would primarily include feeding, changing, holding, and playing. Older children typically require organized activities of some kind to keep busy.
Exploring Your Options
What questions should you consider before going into any kind of day care? Let's explore a few.
"Child care providers, sometimes called day care providers, were originally considered responsible only for the children's basic care. Preschool teachers were responsible only for the children's educational activities. The separation in these major fields continues to diminish because of the growing knowledge that anyone who spends any amount of time with children does affect their learning, and they must also care about the children's basic needs."
—Renee Wittenberg,Opportunities in Child Care
What Age Children Are You Most Comfortable With?
Do you prefer to spend your day with babies? Children under the age of two? Preschoolers? Are you familiar with their needs? If you have spent most of your time teaching teenagers, for example, starting to take care of infants may seem like a welcome change, but if you don't have much experience, it can quickly turn to disaster. Infants demand a great deal of watching, and since they cannot communicate with you yet, they usually cry until you figure out the problem. On the other hand, older kids often require homework assistance and help developing social skills. They will also need to be fed snacks on a regular basis (most likely provided by the parents, but this is one of the many details you will work out upon reaching an agreement).
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