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Day nurseries

play learn grow - Working in Early Years, Childcare and Play

Day nurseries

career routesWhat’s the job all about?

Working in a nursery requires energy and a true empathy with the needs of children. But the rewards are plentiful as you guide them through one of the most important stages of their development.

You would be involved in educational and play activities and taking care of children’s personal needs during meal times and rest periods. As you progress, you could become a nursery nurse responsible for planning and organising activities, and eventually move into management, overseeing finance, parent liaison and recruitment.

What are the opportunities for you?

There are all kinds of day nurseries in Wales. Some are run by voluntary or community groups, some by employers and local authorities, while others are privately run. They tend to provide full daycare, education and play for children up to 5 years old, from eight in the morning until six at night.

They can offer part-time employment or a full-time career.

What qualifications will you need?

Almost all staff in a day nursery must hold a Level 2 qualification. Nearly half will either have a Level 3 qualification or be working towards it. To progress to a manager’s post you must have a Level 3 qualification and a minimum of 2 years’ experience. Many nurseries take on nursery assistants with no qualifications, and are especially keen to attract mature staff with experience of caring for their own children; however most will expect staff to train to Level 2.

If you’re looking to progress further and accept more responsibilities then you will have to prove you have the skills to do the job well. To become a nursery nurse or a team leader or manager, for example, you will need to be qualified to at least Level 3 in Childcare and Learning Development or gain the equivalent CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Learning Development.

For more information on working in a day nursery or on the qualifications listed please contact the National Day Nurseries Association on 01824 707 823, www.ndna.org.uk.

Career routes:

 Day nurseries
 Pre-school playgroups and Cylchoedd Meithrin
 Registered childminder
 Out of school clubs
 Classroom assistant
 Playwork

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Choosing the right career depends on what you want out of your job.