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What are the Different Child Care Jobs?

By Sheri Cyprus
Updated Mar 02, 2024
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Child care jobs vary widely. There are licensed day cares that are often located in the basement of the homeowner's house. Trained assistants help the daycare owner care for the children. Other types of child care jobs are more casual and don't require formal training or licensing, although experience looking after children is essential. These less formal child care positions include live-in nanny situations, family day care and babysitting on a casual basis.

Babysitters don't usually have formal child care training or education, but they must have experience caring for children. Babysitters often take care of children in the evenings such as when the parents go out for dinner. They should understand what to do in case of emergency and keep the children safe and well cared for at all times.

Live-in nannies may be hired by parents who use a child care agency. Alternatively, a parent may place an ad in a local publication and interview experienced nannies. A live-in nanny hired on a temporary basis may be an exchange student or traveler from another country. A bedroom and meals plus some monthly pay is usually given for most live-in nanny child care jobs.

Family day care situations are those in which a parent cares for a few children in her home in addition to caring for her own kids. This type of care is unlicensed and usually less expensive than licensed group child care. A family day care situation may involve the provider taking her school-aged children along with those in her care to and from school each day.

Licensed day cares located in the basements of private homes are sometimes called family day cares. These are more formal situations though because the day care is usually furnished with tables and chairs and play areas for a group of children. Licensed day cares are permitted to care for many children at one time; the ages are usually mixed and range from 0 to 12 years. Child care jobs in licensed day cares include assistants with early childhood education and formal training.

The homeowner owns and is in charge of the day care in licensed situations. She hires qualified assistants to help her run it. Some areas specify how many caregivers are required for what number of children of which age. Assistant child care jobs in licensed day cares may be either full time or part time.

Trained, licensed child care providers must oversee their assistants and make sure government licensing requirements are being met. For instance, in many areas children playing outdoors in the licensed day care's yard must be supervised by a qualified provider who is also outside. Licensed day cares also provide a range of activities for the children each day such as sports games and art projects.

Practical Adult Insights is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By Crispety — On May 20, 2011

@Cafe41 - I think that is a good idea because a lot of people want to become teachers but for some reason they thought that dealing with children would be easier.

I think that teaching young children is a wonderful profession, but you have to have the right personality because you have to have a lot of patience because young children are learning rules for the first time and often have to receive a lot of repetition of these rules in order for the teacher to be able to reinforce them.

This can be frustrating because some people have unrealistic expectations of what children that age are able to do. I think that this is why you see a lot of child care job openings in a lot of day cares because many people underestimate the amount of work that it takes to care for very young children and if you don’t enjoy and understand children then thus field is not for you.

By cafe41 — On May 17, 2011

I just wanted to say that a job in child care can be really rewarding. I had a friend that actually took a day care job because she was considering becoming an early childhood education teacher.

She felt that this would give her experience working with children and really determine if she would like teaching young children or not.

When she graduated from college, she was able to get a job right away because of the experience that she developed working in a day care. She said that she only had to get a CDA license which consisted of 40 hours of course work in order to work in a day care. She was able to take this courses online from the local community college.

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