Your childminder – private childcare by experienced carers
If you could not get a daycare place for your child in your area, this does not mean that permanent childcare is not possible during your working hours. Because there are different childcare models that have become increasingly popular and important in recent years. Above all, this includes the childminder, who looks after children at home, which can bring you many benefits as parents. But other options such as nannies and au pairs are also types of childcare that should not be neglected as an alternative.
How does a childminder work??
A childminder usually works with the municipality or the youth welfare office and looks after up to five children at home while the parents work. Some child minders team up to form larger groups. Many child minders look after children in a certain age range. You will also find child minders who are already looking after babies or those who your children can come to after school. This is interesting if you are still working, the children are too young to stay at home alone and there is no daycare available. So if you take a little time and are lucky, you will find a childminder who will take care of your child from infancy to the early years of school.
The childminder not only ensures that your child is busy and looked after, she will also tinker with the children, go to the playground or go on excursions. Depending on the age, preschool education, sporting activities and, above all, a lot of fun are part of the childminder’s responsibilities. Of course, everything is discussed and planned with you as parents beforehand.
There are other types of private childcare besides child minders?
In addition to the childminder, there are mainly so-called nannies or nannies who are available as private child carers and are usually employed by you. Au pairs are not directly included, but can also take on childcare tasks. In contrast to the childminder, childcare takes place in your absence in your home. Au pairs even live with you during your stay in Germany. This is usually a young woman from abroad who is placed through an agency for one year as childcare and household help before she starts studying or teaching, for example. Therefore, when considering whether an au pair is suitable for childcare, it must always be considered whether there is enough space. In addition, you have to consider whether you can imagine sharing your house or apartment with a stranger.
What advantages does a childminder offer??
The childminder often has an advantage that daycare centers and kindergartens cannot offer: This means more time flexibility. This can benefit you especially if you work in a shift system or have to travel a lot for work. Because there are many childminders who work according to the working hours of the families whose children they care for. If you work the night shift, some child minders also offer that the children can stay with you in these cases. This gives you the necessary security to always have childcare options for your child, even if childcare takes place at unusual and changing times. Likewise, the very small groups and the family environment are often more pleasant, especially for children who still struggle among strangers. After all, there are also children who can be overwhelmed by a large kindergarten group.
When does it make sense to use a childminder??
There are many reasons to choose a childminder. An important point could, for example, be an allergy to your child, which in a kindergarten or a day care center may not be 100% taken care of. Because especially with a peanut allergy, it can be difficult to make sure that no child in kindergarten accidentally brings anything from home that contains nuts and shares them. A childminder can deal with such things much more intensively, so you don’t have to worry about your child coming into contact with things that could trigger an allergy. Likewise, children who need a lot of attention often get along better with a childminder than in large groups in a daycare center. Ultimately, a childminder can also be the right choice for you if your child is still too young for the crèche, but you have to work again just a few weeks after the birth.
What does childcare cost??
The costs of childcare by a childminder always depend on the region in which you live and your income. If you have a low income, it is still possible that you can have your child looked after by a childminder. There are many ways to apply for help from the youth welfare office. In the best possible case, the entire costs are covered, except for a small remaining amount. Likewise, the cost of childcare can be deducted from tax.
The situation is somewhat different for nannies and au pairs. You have to pay the salary completely, so that the costs are significantly higher. Depending on the situation, this can still make sense. However, there is hardly any way to apply for grants or funding here. Au pairs have to be provided with the necessary livelihood and some pocket money, so they are definitely the cheaper alternative than a hired nanny. For tax purposes, you can claim household-related services here.
Who takes care of the child when the childminder is sick or on vacation
If you use the services of a childminder, you should check with the youth welfare office beforehand whether there is a replacement for emergencies. However, since many childminders are networked with one another, they can take over children for a short time if a colleague fails. If the illness occurs at very short notice, you can usually handle it like an illness of your child and temporarily take care of it yourself. When it comes to vacationing, nannies usually plan months in advance. This gives you the opportunity to plan and ideally to put your vacation at the same time. So there should be no problems in this regard. In any case, your children will have a lot of fun with their childminder and will be well looked after.
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