Working with children is an idea loved by many people, though not everyone possesses the skills, and personality, needed for it. All children have extremely unique personalities and are still learning to deal with the world, learning skills and coping mechanisms. If you’re adamant your career path is with children, here are 5 skills you’ll need to master beforehand.

Keeping Calm

As an adult working with children, it’s important that you always remain calm even in an emergency. Maintaining a calm and reassuring presence, even when overwhelmed, is extremely important when amongst children of all ages. Children will look up to you and see how you act and deal with things. By learning to deal with difficult situations yourself, for example enrolling on first aid training, will help you to keep calm when emergencies arise, as you’ll be confident in what you are doing.


Working with children will mean you need to communicate in a certain way. Many adults think babying children and dumbing down information is the easiest way to communicate, however this is a common and unnecessary misconception. Make information easier for children to understand by using examples they can relate to. Most children find it easiest to learn through examples and stories, and therefore taking situations they can relate to can help them to pick up skills and new concepts in the easiest way.


As the saying goes, patience is a virtue. Children process things in a completely different way compared to adults. You need to learn to bridge the gap between what you know, as an adult, and what they understand as children. Working with children means you’re likely to need to repeat yourself and explain things a lot more than usual. Children also get distracted very easily, so deal with these in a way that draws a child’s interests back in. Frustration is inevitable, but keeping your patience is a huge advantage.

Hide Frustration

Leading on from the last point, working with children means you’re going to need to learn how to hide any frustrations. Though children aren’t going to expect you to be happy all the time, and it is okay to let them know that you’re unhappy with their behaviour, showing your frustration, annoyance or tiredness can be disheartening for kids, and can discourage them from learning. Though being bored or frustrated is bound to happen at some point, pretending you’re not is the easiest way to hide it!

Be Enthusiastic

In order to forge a successful career alongside children, first and foremost you are going to need to enjoy spending time with children. Children know when an adult is feeling uncomfortable, and often this can make them feel uncomfortable too. Enthusiasm goes a long way with children, and being enthusiastic about the things your teaching can make it easier for them to pick things up and learn. Children aren’t going to want to learn anything you’re teaching with a frown!

If you think you hold these five traits, or you’re willing to learn, working in childcare could be the right career for you. To find out more information, why not check out the vacancies we advertise, or get in touch with a member of our friendly team via our Contact page or by giving us a call on 0300 300 8131.