“Without greater support for childcare, parents of young children may be forced to choose cheaper, poor quality care for their children or fail to provide it entirely.”

Tim Johnson, Politician

Pros and Cons of Working in Childcare

advantages and disadvantages of being a daycare worker

You think about becoming a childcare worker but are not entirely sure whether this is the right career path for you or if you rather want to go for other job opportunities out there?

Good news! This article will help you to make a better decision in this regard since I show you all the pros and cons of being a childcare worker in the following chapters.

I worked in childcare for an extended period of time and can tell you all the things you have to know from my own personal experience.

Table of Contents

Childcare Worker Job Profile

Job DescriptionChildcare workers are responsible to care of children while their parents are at work or busy with other things. Daycare workers usually cook for children, play with them and make sure that kids feel as comfortable as possible.
Salary$26,000 per year on average, most daycare workers make between $22,000 and $37,000 per year.
Job SecurityGood since people will always make children and there is a lack of people who want to do this job.
Job SatisfactionGreat if you love working with children.
Work-Life BalanceGood since you will have free weekends and many weeks of vacation.
Physically / Mentally Demanding?Can be mentally and emotionally demanding.
Future OutlookGood future job prospects since childcare workers will always be needed and cannot be replaced by machines.
RequirementsYou don’t need a college degree for becoming a childcare worker in most states. It will usually be enough to finish high school.

Advantages of Being a Childcare Worker

  1. You can work with many different children
  2. Working in childcare is more than a job
  3. You can find meaning through your work in daycare
  4. Childcare workers don’t suffer from that much stress
  5. You can play games and get paid at the same time
  6. Children will soon treat you like a family member
  7. You can retrieve old childhood memories
  8. Childcare workers are important to keep our system running
  9. Most parents will be thankful for your support
  10. You don’t have to comply with a strict dress code
  11. Childcare workers will always be needed
  12. You can avoid classical office work
  13. Most childcare workers have standard workweeks
  14. You can learn many things for raising your own children
  15. Free weekends for daycare workers
  16. You don’t have to work whenever kids are on vacation
  17. Good work-life balance for childcare workers
  18. Can be a nice second job
  19. You can avoid heavy physical work
  20. Especially nice for students and retirees

You can work with many different children

One advantage of being a childcare worker is that you can work with many different children.

In contrast to being a nanny where you will have one child which you have to look after for an extended period of time, you will be surrounded by many different children as a daycare worker and this gives you the opportunity to really develop your social skills.

Every kid is different and you have to find solutions for individual problems and preferences on a constant basis.

While this might sound annoying, it can also be quite interesting since you will have to deal with many different character types and chances are that your work will never get boring, at least if you are the type of person who enjoys working with children.

Working in childcare is more than a job

Many childcare workers are also not just working for the money.

They are in this field since they really enjoy working with children of different ages and to teach them things that improve their overall chances in life once they get older.

In fact, you will have a great influence on the overall development of the children you care for and if you are willing to work hard, you can make a real positive difference in their lives.

You can find meaning through your work in daycare

Another upside to working in childcare is that you can also find true meaning in what you are doing.

For instance, you might work in a different job right now but are not fulfilled with your daily tasks at all.

Then you feel like most other people in society right now.

In fact, the level of unhappiness is enormous out there and there are only few people who are really content with what they are doing at work.

Hence, if you are one of those unhappy people who are just in the game for the money, it may be time for a career change and you should definitely consider working as an intern in a childcare facility for a few weeks so that you can decide later on whether you may want to go full-time or if you want to stay in your current job instead.

Chances are that you will be much more fulfilled by working in daycare, even though you might make significantly less money.

Childcare workers don’t suffer from that much stress

Working in daycare is also not that stressful.

While kids can be difficult, most of them can be handled in a rather simple manner if you know what you are doing and if comments of those kids don’t bother you.

Thus, if you have the right mindset, your childcare job will not even feel like work to you.

Instead, it can feel like a long vacation where you can do all the things you liked in your childhood.

You can play games and get paid at the same time

As a childcare worker, you can also play your favorite games and even get paid at the same time.

For instance, if you like playing monopoly, you can play it with the kids in the daycare facility while you get paid for every hour you are there.

Consequently, you can earn money in a rather playful manner and most people who work in stressful and demanding jobs out there will secretly wish to change places with you.

Children will soon treat you like a family member

As I mentioned earlier in this article, you can make a real difference in the lives of the children you care for.

In turn, those children will also treat you like a family member after a few months and you will just become an important person in their lives.

This can be a really nice feeling since you will know that your work is greatly appreciated and that you can make a positive impact on those kids.

In turn, chances are that you will stay motivated for a long time while many other people who are in their jobs just for the money will secretly think about quitting their jobs pretty often.

You can retrieve old childhood memories

Another benefit of being a daycare worker is that you can also retrieve many nice childhood memories.

In fact, many people forget about their childhood pretty soon once they get older and have to deal with all sorts of different problems that come along with adulthood.

Yet, by working in childcare, you can think back to the good old times when you didn’t have all those issues and this may give you a great feeling since you may be able to retrieve memories you might have thought are lost forever.

Childcare workers are important to keep our system running

You will also be pretty important to keep our system running.

In fact, without daycare workers, many parents would just not be able to work enough to provide for their kids.

Many companies still don’t allow to bring your kids with you to work and even if they allowed it, chances are that your kids will distract you from your work all day long.

Consequently, it is pretty important that parents have the option to give their children to childcare so that they can work in a focused and efficient manner.

Most parents will be thankful for your support

Parents will generally know how difficult their children can really be and due to that, most parents will also greatly appreciate your work since they know what their life without childcare would look like.

Some parents may even give you presents since they are so thankful for what you are doing for them and for their kids.

You don’t have to comply with a strict dress code

Another advantage of working in a daycare facility is that you will also not have to comply with a strict dress code.

In fact, you can basically wear whatever you want and as long as you care for children in a decent manner, nobody will actually care about what you are wearing.

Hence, while many other people have to wear suits or other fancy clothes, you will be able to go to work in clothes that make you feel most comfortable.

Childcare workers will always be needed

You will also enjoy really high job security as a daycare worker.

People will not stop making children and there is a shortage of childcare workers in many states.

Consequently, you will also have a pretty easy time finding a job in a daycare facility in most regions and even in case you get fired one day, chances are that you will find a new job pretty soon.

You can avoid classical office work

You also don’t have to work in an office as a childcare worker.

While many people out there who work in classical office jobs have to stare at a computer screen all day long, you will be the one who can work in a completely different manner.

In fact, you will be able to play various different games which can be quite a lot of fun while many other people just have to make boring presentations they don’t actually care about at all.

You will also be able to play soccer or other games with the kids you take care of outdoors while many other people have to work in rather artificial office environments.

Most childcare workers have standard workweeks

Another benefit of becoming a childcare worker is that you will also have rather standard workweeks.

Most often, you will be able to plan your day quite well since you will know when the childcare facility closes.

You will also not work that many hours in childcare.

Most childcare workers work less than 40 hours and some of them even only work part-time.

This means that you will have plenty of time to meet up with your friends after work or also for your hobbies you might enjoy even more than work.

You can learn many things for raising your own children

Working in daycare can also be quite beneficial for you in your private life.

Since you will learn how to deal with difficult children and how to handle them in an appropriate manner, this can give you a great advantage in case you want to have your own children one day since you can apply all the knowledge you learned in your job for your own kids and this will just make your life much easier.

Free weekends for daycare workers

You will also enjoy free weekends as a daycare worker.

In fact, most childcare facilities are closed on weekends and this means that you will have leisure during those days as well and can make nice weekend trips with your family and friends.

You don’t have to work whenever kids are on vacation

You will also enjoy many weeks or even months of leisure as a childcare worker.

Every time kids are on vacation and don’t have school, you will usually also don’t have to work and this means that you will have more leisure than most other people who work in different fields.

Good work-life balance for childcare workers

Childcare workers have the privilege to enjoy really good work-life balance in general.

Since you will have many weeks of vacation and will also work standard workweeks, you will have more than enough time to follow your hobbies or to make nice trips with your own kids.

Can be a nice second job

You also don’t necessarily have to work full-time as a childcare worker.

You may also be able to work in daycare as a second job while you have another main job you make most of your money from.

In fact, some people just work in childcare since they really love what they are doing while they could make much more money from different jobs.

You can avoid heavy physical work

Another upside to a career as a childcare worker is that you can also avoid heavy physical work.

Sure, you will sometimes play soccer, basketball or other sports that can be exhausting.

Yet, compared to other jobs out there, you will just not have the same physical burden.

Especially nice for students and retirees

Working in childcare is also especially promising for students or retirees.

Both groups often need money to cover their bills and since people in both groups often have plenty of leisure, they can use this leisure to work part-time at a childcare center.

While students get more money to finance their studies, retirees can earn additional money to pay rent and to cover other basic expenses.

Now that we talked about all the upsides related to a career in childcare, it is time to also discuss the negative things that come along with working in this field.

Disadvantages of Working in Childcare

  1. Childcare workers don’t make much money
  2. Many day care workers need a second job
  3. Old-age poverty is quite common among childcare workers
  4. You will not be able to afford any luxury
  5. Children can be mean
  6. Parents can be demanding
  7. You have to resolve conflicts between children
  8. You sometimes have to deal with exceptionally difficult children
  9. Some childcare workers get bored in the long run
  10. Hard to go for a different career path once you are in childcare
  11. Social stigma for male daycare workers
  12. You may not be eligible for becoming a childcare worker

Childcare workers don’t make much money

One problem with being a childcare worker is that you will just not make that much money from what you are doing.

In fact, daycare workers make less money than most other people out there and this means that you will often struggle to pay your bills.

Sure, if your partner works in a field where he or she makes decent money, working in childcare may not be that bad for you.

However, if this is not the case, you may experience serious financial problems sooner or later.

Many day care workers need a second job

Since most childcare workers don’t make enough money to cover their bills, many of them even have to work a second job.

This means that you will not have much leisure anymore since you will work in childcare during the day, come home in the afternoon and have to work in a different job in the evening.

Sooner or later, chances are that you will get really tired of this kind of life.

Old-age poverty is quite common among childcare workers

Another downside of working in childcare is that you will usually not be able to save enough money for retirement age.

Since your income will be rather low, you will have to use almost all of it to cover your expenses and you will just not have sufficient money left to invest in retirement funds or other financial instruments that could finance your life once you are no longer able to work anymore.

You will not be able to afford any luxury

You should also be aware of the fact that most childcare workers will not be able to afford any luxury.

You will also have problems with buying your own home since banks will usually not grant you a mortgage due to your low salary.

Therefore, you should also not become a childcare worker if you want to have those nice things and luxury and money are really important to you.

Children can be mean

Another disadvantage of being a daycare worker is that children will not always be nice.

If they have a bad day, kids can be really mean and can also make nasty comments about your look or other personal things.

Hence, make sure that you have the emotional strengths to ignore those comments before you decide for a career in childcare.

Parents can be demanding

Not only kids can be annoying, also parents can be demanding and difficult.

Quite often, parents will try to influence your decision regarding certain topics.

This can take away your level of freedom regarding how you want to do things and may confine you in your decisions in general.

You have to resolve conflicts between children

Kids will also not be nice to each other all day long.

Sooner or later, they will have conflicts with each other and you will be the one who has to resolve those conflicts.

This means that you have to develop a certain aura of authority since children will not listen to you otherwise.

You sometimes have to deal with exceptionally difficult children

Some children will also just be difficult to deal with.

Sooner or later, you will have to take care of children who will ignore everything you tell them and who will just not accept you as an authority figure at all.

In turn, your day at work can be quite exhausting since only a single child can be enough to affect your mood in a negative way.

Some childcare workers get bored in the long run

You should also make sure that working with children is a real passion of yours before you decide to go for a career as a daycare worker.

Otherwise, you may just get bored in the long run since you may simply not feel challenged enough.

Hard to go for a different career path once you are in childcare

Another downside of working in childcare is that it will also be rather difficult to switch fields for you.

Quite often, you will not learn that many hard skills that could be valuable for the corporate world as a childcare worker and this will give you a hard time finding a different job since you will have to compete with other candidates who have much more of those valuable skills to offer.

Social stigma for male daycare workers

It is also still rather uncommon for men to work in this field.

When I started working in childcare, I was the only male daycare worker and this industry is still dominated by women.

Hence, people may also try to bring you down in this regard and it is important that you have the mental strengths to ignore those people who try to stigmatize you in this regard.

You may not be eligible for becoming a childcare worker

Some people will also just not be eligible for a career in childcare.

For instance, if you got fined for certain things in the past, you may just no longer get the chance to work with children.

Thus, also make sure that you don’t do things that are against the law if you want to maintain your chances to work in childcare one day.

Top 10 Being a Childcare Worker Pros & Cons – Summary List

Working in Childcare ProsWorking in Childcare Cons
Working in childcare is not that stressfulSome children are just difficult
You can work with many different childrenParents can be demanding
You can find meaning in what you are doingSome kids will try to bring you down
Parents will appreciate your workChildcare workers have to resolve conflicts
Kids will trust youYou will not make much money
You can make a positive impact on kidsMany daycare workers need a second job
Standard workweeksYou will not be able to afford any luxury
Free weekendsYou may suffer from old-age poverty
Many weeks of vacationSome people are not eligible for it
Can also help you in your private lifeSocial stigma for male daycare workers

Should You Become A Childcare Worker?

As you can see from the arguments above, there are many advantages and disadvantages of being a childcare worker.

Hence, make sure to take your time to evaluate all the pros and cons of working in daycare so that you can make a profound decision regarding your future career path.

Also make sure to check out the following articles:

Advantages and disadvantages of working as a nanny

Advantages and disadvantages of working as a babysitter

Advantages and disadvantages of working as a tutor

Sources

https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes399011.htm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Child_care

https://www.care.com/c/stories/15884/successful-first-day-at-day-care-job/

About the author

My name is Andreas and my mission is to educate people about the different career paths that are possible in our current state of the world. In my opinion, people often make the mistake to choose their profession solely based on how much money they can earn from it instead of doing what makes them really happy.

This is quite sad and I just want to give people a more objective picture of how a fulfilling career could look like. I did the same when I started working in consulting after finishing my Master’s degree in Economics. However, I’ve quit pretty soon after that since I haven’t found true meaning in my job.

Now I can do what I really love to do and I want to enable as many other people as well to go this exciting path towards happiness instead of money.

I conducted various interviews with employees to give you a good impression of what working in different fields will look like and that you can make the best possible decision regarding your future career choice.

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