Copyright

Become an Infant Day Care Worker: Step-by-Step Career Guide

Find out how you can become an infant day care worker. As we take you through the step-by-step process that can help you start a career in infant care, you'll learn about education and credentialing requirements and what you can earn on the job. View article »

View 10 Popular Schools »

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

94% college-bound high school students
…said it was important to communicate with colleges during the search process. (Source: Noel-Levitz 2012 trend study)

Select a school or program

View More Schools
Show Me Schools
 Replay
  • 0:01 Infant Day Care Workers
  • 0:22 Career Information
  • 1:18 Step 1: Get Training
  • 2:01 Step 2: Earn Credentials
  • 3:03 Step 3: Maintain Credentials
  • 3:36 Step 4: Earn a Degree

Find the perfect school

Video Transcript

Infant Day Care Workers

Infant day care workers look after the basic needs of very young children, such as babies and toddlers, while the parents are working or away. They may change diapers, prepare meals, and develop daycare routines. Working with infants and toddlers requires a great deal of patience and understanding of child development.

Career Information

Degree Level 12-16 college credits for entry-level job; associate for lead positions
Degree Level Early childhood education or child development
Licensure/Certification Varies by state; some day care centers and in-home care provider licensure; some states/employers require certification in first aid, CPR, and Child Development Associate (CDA)
Experience 0-6 months for entry-level positions; 1-3 years for lead positions
Key Skills Patience; multi-tasking, verbal communication, and childcare skills; proficiency in using scheduling and educational software; pass background checks; current immunizations and physical stamina
Salary $20,320 (2015 median for childcare workers)

Sources: Online job postings (September 2012), U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, O*NET Online

Entry-level jobs for infant daycare workers typically require 12-16 college credits. Lead positions may require an associate's degree in child development or early childhood education. Entry-level workers may qualify for a position with 0-6 months of experience. Lead providers may need 1-3 years of experience. Key skills for infant daycare workers include patience, physical stamina and the ability to multi-task. They should also be able to communicate with parents and explain concepts in simple terms to infants and toddlers. Proficiency in the use of scheduling and educational software is a plus. In May 2015, the median annual salary for a childcare worker was $20,320, as reported by the BLS. Employment of childcare workers was expected to increase by 5%, or fast as average, between 2014 and 2024.

Step 1: Get Training

As we said earlier, employers often require at least 12-16 college credits in early childhood education, including a course focused on infant and toddler care. Course topics may include caregiving techniques and trends, development issues and milestones, and the caregiver-parent relationship.

State child care and education agencies may also offer courses or short training programs in infant and toddler care. Trainees learn about cultivating intellectual abilities, stimulating language development, and understanding children's behavior. Participants review training materials, including manuals and videos that are based on the most recent theories and research in child development.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Adult Development and Aging
  • Child Care Management
  • Child Care Services
  • Child Development
  • Community Organization and Advocacy
  • Family and Community Services
  • Family Systems
  • Human Development and Family Studies
  • Social Work
  • Youth Services

Step 2: Earn Credentials

Childcare centers and home day care providers may need to meet state licensing laws, which often include passing background checks and inspections, meeting minimum training requirements, and obtaining immunizations.

Some states and employers require certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and infant first aid. Another commonly requested certification is the Child Development Associate (CDA), a nationally recognized credential administered by the Council for Professional Recognition. To qualify for a formal CDA assessment, candidates must complete 120 credit or non-credit hours of formal training in early childhood education and 480 hours of professional experience. Infant and toddler teachers must obtain training and experience with children aged birth to 3 years. Some states recognize the Child Care Professional (CCP) certification. Requirements include a high school diploma and on-the-job experience.

Step 3: Maintain Credentials

Meeting CDA renewal requirements include continuing education, recent work experience, up-to-date certifications in CPR and first aid, and membership in an early childhood education association. Those who are certified in CCP must also meet continuing education standards. Periodic testing of CPR and first aid skills is necessary to maintain certifications. Day care and home care centers must continue to meet state regulations in order to remain licensed facilities.

Step 4: Earn a Degree

Infant day care workers who would like to advance to leadership positions in infant care may need to earn an associate's degree in child development or early childhood education.

Let's go over what we just talked about. If you'd like to become an entry-level infant day care worker, you'll most likely need 12-16 credits of relevant college coursework or an associate's degree in childhood development or early childhood education to qualify for a leadership position, after which you may earn a median annual salary of $20,320.

Next: View Schools

What is your highest level of education?

Some College
Complete your degree or find the graduate program that's right for you.
High School Diploma
Explore schools that offer bachelor and associate degrees.
Still in High School
Earn your diploma or GED. Plan your undergraduate education.

Schools you may like:

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

    • MS in Human Services
    • MS in Human Services - Family and Community Services
    • MS in Human Services - Organizational and Social Services
    • BS in Human Services - Child and Family Welfare
    • BS in Liberal Studies Leadership
    • Human Services Certificates in Child and Family Services
    • Adult Gerontology Practitioner Certificate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Master of Liberal Arts

    What is your highest level of education?

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Science with an Emphasis in Family Dynamics
    • Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Science with an Emphasis in Childhood and Adolescence Disorders

    What is your highest level of education?

    • BA: Liberal Studies
    • AA: Liberal Arts

    What is your highest level of education completed?

  • What is your highest level of education?

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • General Studies, A.A.

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Bachelor of Healthcare Management - Gerontology

    What is your highest level of education?

  • What is your highest level of education completed?

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?