Here at PACEY, we love to see a glimpse into your fantastic childcare settings. From members who explore forest schools, to Montessori settings, to childminders who incorporate real tools into the children's learning, there's so much that we can learn from seeing each other's settings.
Here, childminder Deborah Lyte, from the Peak District, talks about her setting.
"I registered as a childminder four years ago and I really love my job. I have many years experience working with children in schools, nursery schools, baby units and also in Greece working as a nanny. I moved to Greece to work with children shortly after completing my NNEB.
After returning from Greece I worked for my local authority in schools and nursery schools before having my own children. I have three school aged children aged 15,13 and 6. Having had the experience of dropping my child at a large childcare setting and having her pulled from me crying every morning whilst I drove to work, upset and not being able to concentrate on my work, I knew that one day I wanted to open my own setting, but on a much smaller scale.
A few years later we relocated to a small village called Ingbirchworth on the edge of the Peak District surrounded by beautiful countryside. I registered as a childminder and called my business The Little Lytehouse Ltd, I filled my places within a couple of months. I then registered an assistant and due to high demand built an extension to accommodate the extra children. I now have two assistants working with me in our setting.
We offer a fun caring environment for all the children in which they are nurtured in a relaxed atmosphere. We have daily dance and music sessions and a morning wake up and shake up routines. The children love messy play and enjoy the mud kitchen. We have recently introduced daily toddle yoga sessions which is big hit with the children. We make the most of our local community and visit parks, woodland nature reserves and our local all weather sports pitch. The children love the outdoors and we regularly have picnics and bear hunts.
In terms of quality childcare I always strive for the highest possible quality. The children's safety and wellbeing is paramount. Our relationships with parents and carers are exceptional and I feel that this is very important. Communication is vital to enable the best possible childcare.
The best thing about being a childcare professional is that it is so rewarding. Caring for a baby and then watching a child develop and become independant and ready for school is an incredibly rewarding journey. Every day is different and filled with fun and laughter.
The most challenging part of being a childcare professional is the amount of paperwork. It can be rather overwhelming at times and unfortunately has to be done late in the evening after my own children have gone to bed. Daily planning and preparation also take up alot of time. The hours are long and tiring but I wouldn't change anything. I am always thinking about how we can improve, what else we can offer and what training will benefit the setting.
The children we work with are amazing and we are lucky to have such supportive parents. The council (Barnsley) have also been very supportive and are always helpful when ever I need to contact them.
The best aspect of my PACEY membership is the support it offers, from policies and procedures to question and answer sessions, it really does make a huge difference having the support available. I really enjoy attending PACEY conferences too, they are so interesting and educational to me and my business.
Would you like to share a glimpse of your setting? Tell us your story today.