What is a green childminder?

I’ve just written about how I try to live and raise my family in a way that respects the environment and the natural world. In practice this means making choices about what we buy, our leisure activities, our household chores and what we teach our children. But what does this mean with respect to my childminding business and for mindees and their families?

1. Happy children

Number one should definitely be the fantastic experiences I can provide for children. We will explore woodlands, meadows, moorlands and all the wild places we can find. We will learn how the world works by experiencing it together. And by experiencing all that the natural world has to offer the children will learn to love and respect the environment.

When exploring outdoor environments with the children I encourage Natural Play, where children are given the freedom to explore natural spaces and play with the natural materials that interest them. I also adopt a lot of Forest School practices to provide fun, creative and educational experiences.

2. Healthy children

We spend as much time as possible outside so the children will  get lots of fresh air and exercise.

We have a healthy diet – loads of fresh fruit and vegetables, wholegrains, healthy proteins and limited processed foods or refined sugar. Most of our fresh foods are organic and some from our own allotment. Sweet treats are homemade, often by the children.

The children’s exposure to toxins and chemicals is minimised as our toys are mostly made from non-toxic and safe materials and I used non-toxic natural cleaning solutions.

3. Green childcare options for parents

For those who already consider the environmental impact of their lifestyles I can offer childcare in line with these values. Some day to day practices I adopt may differ from other childcare providers for example I use washable cloth wipes instead of disposable and I am happy to change cloth nappies if that is what the child is already using at home.

 

 

 

 

 

Why I have chosen childminding

I have been a stay at home mum since my second son was born in 2017. I found looking after my two boys 7 days a week really challenging at first, and still do some days! But I love being there for them and watching them grow and develop, I appreciate how lucky I am to be in this position. I gradually became to realise that I was rather good at meeting the needs of my baby and toddler whilst providing stimulating and creative play, activities and outings. I also realised that I was enjoying my new role and that I was feeling confident and motivated. I think my children have a wonderful home environment and I would love to offer this to other families.

Childminders provide brilliant childcare for young children: a nurturing home environment, a relaxed child-led routine and activities based on the Early Years Foundation Stage. For families they provide flexibility and reliability. I went back to work for a couple of years after my first son was born and he attended a nursery. I know how important good quality childcare is for working parents. In hindsight I wish that I had considered a childminder for our son as there are many benefits over a nursery setting. I will probably write about the differences in future as this may be useful for parents.

From a personal point of view childminding will allow me to build my own career whilst caring for my children in my own home. Minded children will become part of the family and the boys will love having friends to play with. Childminding is a challenging and rewarding career and I can’t wait to get started.