The most important thing about childcare on holiday is that your children feel happy, safe and comfortable in my care. With this in mind I try to stick as closely as possible to any established routines you have and spend time to get to know each child’s needs and personalities. I combine this with my local knowledge and family ski holiday experience to create a fun and engaging holiday for everyone.
Whilst there is no such thing s a ‘typical day’ with the range of ages of children I look after a general routine looks something like this:
- Read a story or watch a favourite show to settle in after Mummy and Daddy head off
- Head out on an ‘adventure’ (to indoor/ outdoor soft play, merry-go-round, swimming, sledging, feeding the ducks etc.)
- A healthy and filling lunch
- Nap time
- Time to get messy with arts and crafts, cooking or playdoh
- Snack (usually alternating daily between healthy and a special treat)
- General playtime (books, small world play, role play, playing in the chalet garden, making music, construction toys…)
- Mummy and Daddy arrive home
I bring with me a sack of age appropriate toys which changes daily to keep children engaged (although their favourite items stay in.) I recommend you bring a few favourites from home to keep consistency too, but there is no need to fill your bags.
What People Say
Grâce à vous les enfants ont passés agréable vacances. C est avec joie qu ils vous retrouvaient chaque jour et C est avec confiance qu on vous les confiez.
“Emma is absolutely wonderful with children, 100% reliable, honest and trustworthy. Could not recommend her highly enough for peace of mind that your kids are in good hands.”
“Emma looked after my premature twins from four weeks old (was it earlier?) and was superb. She has an inherent understanding of babies and children and was always exemplary in their safety, care and happiness.”
Where it all began
I started babysitting at the age of 14 as was the norm in rural Gloucestershire. At this young age trying to get cheeky 5, 6 and 7 year olds to bed could be challenging but I still loved getting to know the children, playing games and reading bed time stories.
At the age of 15 I was surprised but delighted when my mum told me she was expecting a baby. When Joe was born I absolutely loved spending time with him and would scoop him up as soon as I got back from school, have him next to be as I did my homework and then do bath and bedtime with him most nights. This was also the time when I started more regular babysitting and nannying. I cared for twin girls from the age of 8 weeks, through toddlerhood, starting school and regular overnight and weekend stays whilst they were teenagers.
By the time I left university it was clear to me that childcare was the direction I wanted to take with my life. I secured a job looking after the children of the directors of Snowfocus (a family skiing company) in Chatel, France. The two boys (then 3 and 5) are now 14 and 17 so don’t need nanny care but I continued to work for the company, as a holiday nanny, for over 10 years.
During the summer seasons I would return to the UK and undertook a number of temporary childcare jobs between seasons.
In 2011 I undertook a year of training to become a primary school teacher (PGCE). This was an exceptionally informative course which provided me with a huge amount of insight into pedagogy and the developmental needs of children including those with special needs. Without doubt the most enjoyable part of the course was the time spent on placements in schools. Getting to know my classes and helping each and every child improve not just in their academic work but also with their social skills and self esteem. I graduated in the summer of 2012 with full marks in 6 out of 8 of my teaching areas. This childcare qualification has undoubtedly shaped the nanny I am today and I am hugely grateful to have done it, it did however teach me that being in the classroom is not the career for me.
Back to the Alps – Snowfocus
In the summer of 2014 I moved to Chatel, France full time. As I was no longer doing just seasonal work I took a much more active role working for the family ski chalet. My duties outside of the season included staff recruitment, marketing, booking guest airport transfers and organising the in-house children’s ski school. This valuable experience means I am well placed to advise and help any families coming to stay in Chatel about a vast range of holiday queries.
During the winter season I ran the Chalet’s nanny service which involved working with other nannies to plan and carry out a range of age-relevant activities. In the mornings I drove groups of children to their ski lessons, I then liaised with their ski instructors to ensure the children were happy and improving within their lessons. Lunch was either supervised on the mountain by me or eaten back at the chalet before more skiing or afternoon activities.
With 8 seasons of experience in this role I think it is fair to say I have become an expert at childcare in the Alps. I understand the need to balance down time with outdoor activities. I pick up on any ski equipment issues or worries the children may have and try my best to address them before they become a problem. I absolutely love caring for children in the Alps and I am passionate about providing them with the best possible holiday as well as giving their parents peace of mind that their children are happy and well cared for.
Along my childcare journey I have picked up a number of qualifications on the way:
BSc Physiologial Sciences, Bristol University 2:1
PGCE, Primary Education, University of Gloucestershire
Level 1 Food Hygiene Certificate
Paediatric and Outdoor First Aid Certification
Asthma and Epi-pen training
British Association of Snowsport Instructors (BASI) Level 1
Snow and Ice driving course 2017