I'm FINALLY getting calls for supply teaching work again after 14 months (including 9 mos maternity) without working. DH and I have researched our options and decided that because my work isn't always consistent, that a childminder would probably be best for DS (who is 13 mos now). MIL & FIL can watch him on Tues & Thurs, so we only need to find someone able to potentially cover a Mon, Wed & Friday depending on the work I get booked for.
So...being new at this, we're hoping to start making calls to people today and try to meet up over the weekend in case I get any work booked for next week after Tuesday.
First, is that too ambitious to hope to find someone so quickly?
And second, any advice on what to look for or questions to ask to help decide who would be the best fit to look after him?
I dont think thats too soon, although I met our childminder about 4 times with Thomas before leaving him with her for a few hours for a settling in period.
I found ours on childcare.co.uk she is lovely, abit mad but lovely! I made sure she is ofsted reg'd. Also, that she was my kind of person, the type of mum i wouldmeet for a coffee!
Your local council should have a list of childminders who are registered with them, so that can help. I looked for ones who were local to me, and then narrowed it down from there. Several of the ones I looked at actually had a website, which did help whittle the choice down from there.
We had a look at some websites for suggestions on questions to ask (I think it was the Scottish Childminder's Association or something like that), picked a few from there. Most people seemed to actually answer the questions anyway in the normal flow of conversation.
Be prepared to listen to your gut, as well. If you don't "click" with the person after spending an hour or so with them, are you going to be happy leaving DS there?
You might well find someone who has availability now. It just depends on how many kids they have of each age etc Wouldn't say it's too ambitious, although obviously it might limit your choices somewhat.
Ask friends or family if there is anyone they can recomend.
The only "friends" locally are my family, and they use a nursery. Unfortunately that wouldn't work for us because I don't have set days that I will be working as they call me 48 hours to a month ahead to book days to work.
See if you can pop to a local infant school about 10-15 mins before home time - ask all the mums if they could recommend a childminder. You might even meet some there that you can get chatting to informally and then do a bit more research on them if you like them x
Like Eala I looked at a list from my local council. I was extremely lucky that I hit it off with the first lady I called and Ruby is very happy with her. I wouldn't take recommendations from people unless I knew them well and they had the same priorities as me.
Regarding the council lists...I was looking on direct gov, a link from my local council's site...and it lists how many are registered at each person. I take it that's how many they currently have, not how many they have openings for?
I really hope I can find someone DH and I both feel comfortable with.
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