Nursery workers look after small children.

What does a nursery worker do?

Nursery workers look after small children (usually from birth to the age of five) in a nursery setting. You’ll plan and supervise play sessions and help with early development. You may need to feed and change babies. 

What do I need to do to become a nursery worker?

You can do courses in college to help you become a nursery worker, or to specialise in specific areas of nursery work, like dealing with children with special educational needs or disabilities. 

To become a qualified nursery worker you need a recognised (referred to as ‘full and relevant’) level 2 or level 3 childcare qualification. There are courses for those working with ‘children and young people’ offered at local colleges. Entry requirements vary depending on the course level, with some providers and employers requiring four/five GCSE grade Cs, including maths and English. Alternatively, you may able start this job through an apprenticeship scheme.

You will need to have a clean and up-to-date Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check in place.

Related skills

  • Teamwork
  • Patience
  • Organisation
  • Numeracy
  • Communication
  • Customer service
  • Discipline
  • Literacy
  • Leadership
  • Interpersonal skills

Related subjects

  • English
  • Religious studies

Essential qualifications

  • Recognised level 3 childcare qualification
  • DBS check

Where could I be working?

You'll usually be working indoors. You could work in local authority childcare settings, privately owned nurseries, Sure Start children's centres and reception classes in primary schools.

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0

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