Work as a childminder

A woman and a child playing with blocks in a living room.

Be your own boss, work from home and take the children you care for to exciting places nearby as you help them thrive. You could also get grants of £600 or £1,200 to help you set up, depending on whether you register with Ofsted or a childminder agency. You don’t have to work alone either. Build networks or employ an assistant. Set up your business your way.

What’s involved

Childminders offer professional home-away-from-home childcare. They look after small groups of children of different ages.

They work closely with parents and carers to provide bespoke care. Childminders usually work in their own home. They can also apply to spend up to 50% of their time offering childcare from places such as:

  • nurseries
  • church halls
  • classrooms or other parts of a school

Some childminders may offer wraparound childcare. This means looking after children of all ages before and after school. It can also mean looking after them during the school holidays.

Childminding allows people to be their own boss. Childminders are usually self-employed and run their own business. Many go on to expand their business and employ childminding assistants so they can care for more children at once.

What you’ll do

If you become a childminder, no two days will be the same. A typical day is likely to include:

  • encouraging children’s development using creative play, reading and storytelling
  • cooking with and for the children, providing healthy, nutritious meals and snacks
  • taking the children to and from nursery or school
  • observing the children’s progress
  • working with parents and carers to support their child’s ongoing learning and development
  • safeguarding the children and ensuring their welfare

You could also learn from an experienced childminder as a childminding assistant.

What you’ll need

If you want to become a childminder, you’ll need to:

After you’ve applied to register as a childminder, you’ll have a pre-registration visit. During this visit, you’ll need to show that you have the required knowledge of the early years foundation stage framework. There will also be checks on other people in your home.  

New childminders may be able to apply for a childminder start-up grant. The amount you get will depend on whether you register with Ofsted or a childminder agency.

Register as a childminder

Find out how you can register as a childminder online.

Real stories

Discover the real stories from early years educators making a difference, their way. Hear what they have to say about where they work and what their role is like.


A man reading to children in a classroom.

Training and qualifications

If you would like to grow in your career and get involved in other roles, find out more about the qualifications you can take.

Two women and 3 children playing hopscotch