5 misconceptions about early childhood careers

When you think of the world of early childhood, some stereotypes are tough! However, these professions are rich in encounters and learning. Demonstration.

1. These are jobs reserved for women

In the same way that the nursing profession has long been associated with the female sex, early childhood professions are still too often considered to be the preserve of women. A misconception that continues, so much so that less than 3% of early childhood professionals are men (childcare assistant, maternal assistant, etc.). What to discourage the vocations of certain men who are then pushed towards so-called more “manly” professions. However, diversity is essential in order to allow children to be confronted with the male sex outside their family unit. As in the corporate world, the mix of genders is a source of creativity, since each professional, man or woman, brings their vision and energy. Co-education also offers parents other benchmarks, especially dads when they come to pick up their offspring. So, yes, more than ever, men are welcome in the world of early childhood!

2. The nursery is just a playground

Anyone who spends more than 20 minutes with a toddler realizes the energy it takes to take care of them. Yet, in the collective imagination, the world of early childhood is all about changing diapers, bottle-feeding and blowing babies' noses. Big mistake! "The perception of these jobs externally is often not highly valued, while these jobs require real support skills and empathy. We want to contribute to the education of the little ones by working hand in hand with the families ", explains an official of the Babilou nursery group. To do this, the group has set up its own pedagogy, drawing inspiration from different trends: Reggio Emilia, Montessori, Freinet, Pickler, while learning about the latest research in neuroscience. Teams must then be resourceful in deploying these concepts through activities appropriate for each age. Development of fine motor skills, language acquisition, toilet training, community life … there are many challenges to overcome! Caring, professionals work alongside children to help them gain autonomy every day. In fact, how many parents are surprised by their child's prowess at nursery or childminders?

3. Jobs without responsibility

Between the ages of 0 and 3, there is so much going on in a child's brain. In addition, the toddler is extremely permeable to his environment and to the various stimuli that he will receive: this is called neuroplasticity of the brain. The role of early childhood professionals is therefore essential and involves a great deal of responsibility on their part. Also, because they are fully aware of the major stages in a child's development, early childhood professionals can give the alert – always with kindness – when a little one seems to be in difficulty in certain acquisitions. Health professionals consider them to be valuable allies in the early detection of neurodevelopmental disorders.

4. No training is necessary in early childhood

Let it be said: a nanny or a babysitter is not the same as a maternal assistant or childcare assistant!
To become a nursery assistant, it is necessary to receive an accreditation and then to train for 60 hours.
For childcare auxiliaries, no less than 1,435 hours of theoretical and clinical education are required to obtain the diploma. Moreover, childcare auxiliaries do not only have their place in nurseries, but also in pediatric departments in hospitals or in a maternal and child protection center (PMI).

5. There is no possibility of evolution

In addition to being a maternal assistant or childcare assistant, there are other jobs in the early childhood sector. When the auxiliary has 3 years of experience in the hospital or medico-social sector, it is then possible to continue his training by preparing for the State diploma of educator of young children, or the entrance examination in nursing training institutes (IFSI). Another prospect for development in collective reception structures is to become a crèche director. To do this, you must have a state childcare diploma and have at least 3 years of professional experience.

So, want to join in the round?

Article produced in partnership with Babilou

Video by Juliette Le Peillet