Apprentice nursery workers work with children in nurseries and early childhood settings. They primarily care for infants and children aged 0 to 5, with some attending full-time and others part-time.
Childcare responsibilities include feeding, feeding them for naps, and ensuring their safety. They may also design activities and crafts for young children to help them develop critical cognitive, social, physical, and emotional skills.
Throughout your apprenticeship, you may help:
- plan and supervise activities like arts and crafts, music and cooking
- help children to learn numeracy and language skills through games
- take part in singing, role play and story telling
- take children on outings
- feed and change babies
- observe children and make notes to write reports
- make sure children are safe and well
- speak with parents, carers and other nursery staff.
- Starting salaries for an apprentice is £14,000 per year.
- Experienced nursery workers can earn up to £24,000 per year.
You will typically work 38 to 40 hours per week, including weekends on a rota.
You could work in a nursery.
You may need to wear a uniform.
Qualifications you can achieve as an apprentice nursery worker include:
- Level 2 Early Years Practitioner – Entry requirements for this level include some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship. This qualification will take 12 months to complete.
On a nursery worker apprenticeship, you’ll learn:
- sensitivity and understanding
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- the ability to work well with others
- to be flexible and open to change
- excellent verbal communication skills
- customer service skills
- the ability to understand people’s reactions
- active listening skills
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device.
Career path and progression
As an experienced nursery worker, you may specialise in working with children who have learning difficulties, physical disabilities, or who need mental health assistance.
By earning a Level 3 Early Years Educator certificate or an early years lead practitioner higher apprenticeship, you might advance to room leader, senior nursery worker, or centre management.
You might further your study by earning a certificate in early childhood or child development. You may then pursue a career in management or early childhood teaching.