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Written by Susan ShorSusan Shor

10 Top childcare skills to boost your resume

8 min read
10 Top childcare skills to boost your resume
Working with children should be fun, but it takes knowledge and preparation to make it all seem like fun and games. This list of top childcare skills for your resume will help you focus on what you need to enhance your childcare career.

Caring for children is a calling, but it can be a demanding one. Balancing the needs of individual children with the needs of the group while maintaining safety and providing age-appropriate activities requires a multitude of skills. 

The blog below will help you discover the resume skills for childcare work you can add to your application to make you a more desirable candidate. In it, we will cover:

  • The top five soft resume skills for childcare
  • The top five hard childcare skills for a resume
  • How to demonstrate childcare skills on a resume

5 Top soft childcare skills for your resume

Let’s get started with soft skills, or interpersonal skills, that help you relate to children, their loved ones and your colleagues and that make you an excellent worker.

1. Patience

This may be a no-brainer, but it should not be overlooked. Children love repetition, but they also have short attention spans. That means repeating the same activity, song or game many times over the course of days even if you are bored. It also means that when children make mistakes, get emotional or lose interest in the plan, you must keep your cool and patiently work through it all.

Patience also comes in handy when dealing with parents and guardians. They may pick up their children late or forget about an item you asked them to bring. They may be frazzled themselves and need you to be patient with their shortcomings. In any case, this skill is highly valued in any childcare setting.

2. Compassion and empathy

The best childcare workers are able to put themselves in other people’s shoes. Adding this childcare resume skill plus an example that demonstrates how you employ it will go a long way toward explaining your desire to work with children and their loved ones.

There will be times that you have to deliver unpleasant or upsetting news to parents or guardians. Doing so with an understanding of what it feels like to be on the receiving end of that news will make a huge difference to all involved.

3. Communication

Following the advice above, childcare workers need to communicate with children’s carers honestly and openly. They also must listen to parents and guardians as they discuss the needs of their children.

When speaking with the children themselves, this skill takes on a different dimension. While you should never “dumb down” your message for children, you should make sure you are communicating in an age-appropriate manner.

4. Creativity

Children are natural-born artists who are soaking up ideas and information rapidly. Creativity allows you to dream up activities, lessons and plans for the day that will encourage their development.

5. Decision-making and problem-solving

When you have a room full of preschoolers, you will encounter situations on the fly that require quick judgments be they children arguing over the block corner or a quick substitution when it starts raining during outdoor time.

5 Top hard childcare skills for your resume

Hard skills for your daycare resume are those you have learned either on the job or in childcare classes. Here are five hard skills for a daycare resume: 

1. Knowledge of child development

It’s wonderful that you love children and get endless satisfaction out of teaching them and watching them grow, but a resume childcare skills list must include your knowledge of age-appropriate behavior, milestones, socialization and activities.

Some states and facilities require some level of certification, depending on what type of child care you want to do.

2. Safety and first aid

Of course, any childcare setting is designed with safety in mind, but you also need eagle eyes to prevent potential hazards from developing. There’s always one child who haphazardly stacks books to climb to try to reach an off-limits toy or snack.

On the other hand, accidents happen and you need to know how to deal with them, even if it’s just a scraped knee. Any first aid training or certification you have is a valuable resume childcare skill.

3. Nutrition and hygiene for infants and children

When you are caring for infants and small children, you are entirely responsible for their wellbeing. You are charged with monitoring what they eat and how much or if they have finished their bottles or not. In certain settings, you may be the person planning or serving snacks as well.

In addition, you will be changing diapers or soiled clothing and keeping all materials in the classroom sanitized.

4. Classroom management

While this may seem less like a skill for childcare workers and more for teachers of school-age children, it is not. The best childcare workers take a systematic approach to managing the classroom. 

Whether you use color coding to designate spaces for each child, a clap to gain attention, or another method for creating routine and space, is not as important as the fact that you have a classroom management system that allows for smooth learning and play.

5. Administrative organization

This may not be your favorite part of the job, but it’s a great additional childcare resume skill because working with children in a daycare setting is full of paperwork. Guardians want to know about their child’s day in detail. You may also be expected to write progress reports that include data and examples. Keeping on top of data collection will make that process much smoother and provide guardians with a clearer picture of their child’s development.

How to demonstrate childcare skills on your resume

The summary, employment history, education and, of course, the skills section all provide opportunities to list daycare resume skills. Here’s how to take advantage of those opportunities:

  • Summary. Within these four lines of text, you should choose your proudest childcare success, making sure it includes an example of a skill you used.
  • Employment history. Each bullet item is a showcase for a resume childcare skill. Choose achievements that demonstrate how you apply your skills during the work day and include how your achievement has improved the lives of children, parents or that of the childcare center.
  • Education. List any childcare degrees and certifications you have earned.
  • Skills. While this may seem obvious, the trick here is to choose not just your top daycare skills for your resume, but to choose skills that your employer has listed as musts and good to haves in the job advertisement. You may also choose to rate your level of proficiency at these skills.
Expert tip

No two jobs are alike

That means that when you go about listing resume skills for a childcare position, you need to understand the environment, the program, the age of the children and the role your prospective employer wants to fill.

Then, tailor your daycare resume to fit the bill.

Key takeaways

  • Child care requires many interpersonal skills because you will be dealing with children, their loved ones, colleagues and superiors.
  • Include any classes or certification in child care or CPR that you have earned.
  • Your childcare resume skills should be displayed throughout your application document.
  • Use examples of your skills to give prospective employers a picture of how you function in the classroom.
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