Finding a childminder can be a challenging task. To make things easier, here are some questions to ask that might help you in your decision making.
If you have decided that a childminder is the best option for you and your child, the next step will be advertising for a childminder and interviewing them. Some parents find it hard to put together some questions to ask their prospective childminder so here we have put together some questions you can ask and hopefully it will lead you to the best childminder for your little one.
Childminder possible interview questions.
- How much experience do you have?
- Do you have written references and can I contact them?
- Have many children did you mind in the past? And what ages were the kids?
- Are you garda vetted? And are there others in your home that will be around my kids and are they too garda vetted?
- Are you insured for childminding? And are you a member of Childminding Ireland?
- Have you completed a paediatric first aid course? And if not would you be willing to? And do you have a first aid box in your home?
- How many children do you mind in your home? And will they be there when my kiddie is present? What ages are the other children?
- Will you go on outings with the kids? What mode of transport do you use? And if you have a car is it fully insured? Do you have a full and clean driving licence?
- Are you insured for childminding in your home?
- Do you have a safety plan in place for your home? Do you have a smoke and carbon dioxide alarm? Is your home secure with locks at the door so little kids can’t leave the property unaided?
- Do you supply meals or should I arrive each morning with their child’s meals prepared in a lunch box?
- What time is the earliest you will allow a kiddie to come in for the day? And what is the latest you would want the nipper collected in the evening?
- Do you have stair gates, fire guards, fridge locks and door stoppers? Is your home basically child friendly? And do you allow the children you mind free reign or is there rooms they are not allowed access throughout their day in your home?
- Do you have any pets? And will they be in contact with the children you mind? Are they friendly and well cared for?
- Will the kids be allowed outside in the warmer months to play? Is the garden suitable for little ones to play safely? And if you have any outdoor play equipment is it fit for use?
- Do you have a plan or a structure for the children each day? Or are they just let do as they please all day?
- Should I supply the toys and games for entertainment? Or are you happy for the children to use your stuff?
- What is your policy on discipline? And do you have a regulations manual for parents to have and keep? Including rules, safety and a statement regarding your promise to care for my child as I would care for them myself?
- How much is your fee each day? And do you charge if the kiddie is off ill at home? Do you require retainer money for when my family is on holidays and therefore you won’t be minding our child? What way do you prefer to be paid-weekly or monthly?
- If you become ill is there a backup plan in place? What are your next steps?
With this list there is a lot of information on it and some childminders won’t have all the answers and some will be perfect for you and your child. Even taking this into account someone who looks perfect on paper might not be the perfect match, remember to go with your gut instinct.