Why nursery nurses make the best nannies

Published: 21/02/2020

If you’re like any other parent hiring a nanny for the first time, the chances are that you’re looking for a lady with 20+ years’ experience, who has also raised her own children. What’s more, the 20+ years’ experience will need to have been gained working as a nanny in private households and ideally, she won’t have changed jobs more than twice during those two decades.

We get it. We see these types of requirements every day at myTamarin. What we also see is that parents with requirements like these are missing out on some of the best nanny talent out there!

Firstly, what is a nursery nurse? Nursery nurses are the qualified childcare practitioners who have worked in nurseries -- or the kindergartens (of our fellow Americans) -- are often the most overlooked but arguably the best childcare partners you could wish for. 

Here are the five reasons why nursery nurses make amazing nannies:

The master of taming multiple children

There are strict guidelines on the ratio of staff to children in a nursery: for under two years old, it’s one carer to three children, for two to three-year-olds, it’s one carer to four children, and for three to five-year-olds, its one to eight children. (Eight!)

For nursery nurses this means multiple personalities, multiple tantrums, multiple nappies to be changed, multiple likes and dislikes, multiple allergies and multiple parents to update and report progress to. 

The ability to juggle all that while ensuring each child feels included and valued at the same time is an art that requires patience, understanding, as well as well-honed multi-talking skills. If a nursery nurse has mastered all that, just think about the magic she could weave in your home with fewer children to look after and one set of family values!

Creativity that’s needed when you work within four walls

Being a nursery nurse requires stamina and bundles of energy, patience and tolerance, a sense of fun, good communication skills and interpersonal skills. 

What’s more, unlike nannies who can rely on organised activities such as Monkey Music and Gymboree, frequent visits to local parks or museums, and play dates with other nannies, nursery nurses have to be incredibly creative and have a vivid imagination to be able to constantly entertain (and develop) children within the confines of the nursery.  

Coming with an array of ideas for activities that don’t require much more than what’s already residing in your home, nursery nurses can significantly help your children’s physical, social, intellectual and emotional development. 

They’ll keep you in the know 

Nursery nurses are required to complete diaries and detailed reports for every child they’re responsible for. Information such as when and what they ate, how long they slept for, when their nappy was changed, etc. is all relayed to the parents. They will also keep track of any developmental milestones such as the first word, the first step, or that they’ve learned to roll a ball instead of throwing it, etc. 

If they’re used to doing this on a regular basis for a number of parents, you can comfortably expect to be updated regularly too. And they’ll make you feel involved and supported as a parent at the same time.  

Formal education and training

Nursery nurses often have childcare qualifications such as NVQ in Children’s Care or CACHE (Diploma in Child Care and Education). They also receive ongoing training from their supervisors and through organised workshops and seminars. This means they’re fully equipped to be able to support children’s early development and education and help prepare them for the next stage in their development. 

So, if your preference is to have someone who is developmentally focused, then a nursery nurse may be just right for you. There are also nannies out there with some level of formal childcare training, but you don’t come across them quite so often. 

Salary expectations that won’t break the bank

The average salary for a nursery nurse is £18,000 to £20,000 for 35-40 hours, that’s £9.00 to £11.00 per hour, whereas the average salary for a full-time nanny is upwards of £40,000 for 50 hours.

If It’s a nursery nurse’s first time working as a nanny, they’ll command a salary at the lower end of the market average. What’s more, they won’t be set in their ways and will be eager to learn. For you, as a parent, this means you’ll have the opportunity to help shape and train her into becoming your practically perfect Mary Poppins.

At myTamarin we’re investing in our nannies. We’ll soon be helping nannies develop their career through the myTamarin Nanny Academy. For nursery nurses looking to transition into being a nanny, it will help them get a better understanding of the expectations of the role and help them transfer the skills they’ve already gained as a nursery nurse.

With thanks to Ellen, one of myTamarin Customer Success Executives. If you’d like to schedule a call with Ellen and discuss your childcare needs, select a slot here.

For more help in your search for a nanny, read our blog on How to interpret nanny CVs and profiles.

Tamarins are monkeys who parent in family groups – like a village – helping each other while children are small.

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Parents sign up here to begin your nanny search.

Nannies sign up here to find your next family. Alternatively, you can send your CV to hello@mytamarin.com and we will be in touch!

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