Amanda Calloway

My name is Amanda Calloway and I have been a Self-Employed Childminder in north east Wales since 2007. I work alone and I typically provide care for three under 5-year-olds each day. Although my registration allows me to care for more children this is the age group of children I prefer working with.

Amanda Calloway - Childminder

Amanda Calloway - Childminder

No two days are the same but on a very simple level I provide all the care a child needs throughout the time they are with me while also supporting and extending their learning and development. My setting is very child led so I don’t have specific plans for each day. What I do is follow the lead of each child and provide opportunities for them dependant on their interests and their age and stage of development. I love the flexibility of my role and the ability to change our plans dependant on circumstances. It may be that I wake up to beautiful sunshine so we make up a picnic and head off out to the beach or a local National Trust setting.  

My life before childminding was very different working within the financial industry. A role where I never quite felt happy or fulfilled. When my youngest son was born I was persuaded by my own childminder to take the plunge and give childminding a go.   

My plan was always for it to be a short-term job while my son was still small. What I didn’t expect was how much I enjoyed spending time with the children in my care and not forgetting being my own boss. The sense of pride having a successful business is immense.   

Childminding has given me many opportunities that I am hugely grateful for. I spent six years as a Trustee on the Board of Directors of PACEY (Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years) which gave me an invaluable insight into the wider context of the childcare sector. I’ve also been able to access many continued practice development opportunities including NVQ Level 3 and Level 5 and in 2014 I graduated from Glyndwr University with a First Class Honours degree in Early Childhood Studies. I didn’t get the opportunity to go to University after school so attending in my forties was a definite achievement.   

I now couldn’t imagine doing any other role. I get up each day eager to start work and the children in my care bring so much joy to my life. It’s a huge privilege to be trusted with the care of other people’s children and it’s a role that I enjoy doing to the best of my ability. Watching the excitement and joy on the children’s faces as they experience new things and develop new skills is something that is priceless. It’s hard work but the rewards are definitely worth it.   

Positive relationships with parents and other stakeholders are vitally important so communication skills are a definite advantage. You also need to be organised and know where to find the correct information to be able to run a small business effectively. There is so much help and support out there that it is easy to put measures in place to ensure that you keep up to date with changes to regulations and to the sector as a whole.