How to Work With Kids: 6 Helpful Tips to Remember

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Work With Kids

Do you work with kids on a daily basis? Whether you’re a teacher, coach, or one of the 1.1 million daycare workers in the U.S., you know that working with kids has its own set of rules.

And if you’re just starting out, it can be really daunting.

That’s why we’ve created this guide outlining 6 helpful tips about how to work with kids. Keep reading to learn more.

1. Make Rules and Follow-Through

First and foremost, no matter what type of situation you’re in, it’s imperative that you establish rules with your kids. Without clear guidelines, children will act out and consistently do things that you don’t want them to do.

But with a set of rules, they’ll be much more likely to behave properly.

Daycares, preschools, and elementary school classrooms are all governed by rules. So start by thinking about what rules you want to enforce.

Depending on the age of the kids you work with, it can also be beneficial to include them in this process. That way they’ll feel some ownership and greater interest in following the guidelines.

You should also display the rules somewhere in your environment that’s easy to see. That way, they’ll stay top of mind for your kids.

Lastly, once the rules are created and understood by your children, you have to make sure to follow through on them. For example, if one of your rules is no hitting and one kid hits another, they’ll need to receive a consequence.

2. Stick to a Routine

The truth is that kids thrive when they have a consistent routine. If they know that in the morning, they have outside time and that 2 p.m. is snack time, for example, it helps them feel safe and secure.

So depending on your situation, make a schedule. Plan a certain time for homework, screen time, or nap time.

Have music time on the list? Consider starting with the same song every time so the kids can immediately feel more comfortable with the activity.

3. Plan Your Activities and Have Backups

When you’re creating a plan for how to work with kids, make sure you plan your activities. It’s no fun to run out of things to do while you’re with a bunch of energetic children.

Are you a teacher? You’ll want to have detailed lesson plans complete with games, interactive content, and interesting object lessons.

Work at a daycare? Make a playlist for your dance party. Pre-cut the materials you’ll need for your craft.

Once you have these activities planned, make some backups. When you’re working with kids, you have to be adaptable.

For example, what if an activity ends up going a lot faster than you expected and you have an extra 40 minutes to fill? What if you wanted to go outside but it starts raining?

With backups, you’ll be prepared to face any circumstance.

4. Keep Your Space Organized

Kids and messes go hand in hand. And if kids were in charge, it’s likely that your space would be utter chaos.

In order to counter this tendency, keep your room organized. Here are a few ways to make that happen.

Start with bins and baskets. For example, if you have a wide variety of toys, have a home for each category. That way, when you’re cleaning up, you can put all the stuffed animals in one bin and the cars in another.

If possible, it’s also a great idea to have individual cubbies or baskets for each child. Here they can place their personal belongings, coats, and bags.

5. Break Up Projects into Smaller Tasks

Here’s another child care training tip. For most kids, especially younger children, a process can be intimidating. And it can be hard for them to remember each part of a 5-step process, for example.

To combat this, break up large tasks into smaller tasks. For example, instead of saying, it’s time to get ready to go home, divide it into sections.

These could be:

  • Start by cleaning up your toys
  • Next, put on your socks
  • Then, put on your shoes
  • After that, it’s time to put on your jacket
  • Lastly, wait quietly for your parents

And if your kids can’t read, consider printing out pictures that represent each of these steps.

6. Give Warnings

Lastly, when talking about how to work with kids, remember this: give warnings.

Nobody likes being interrupted in the middle of something. And the same thing is true of kids, but even more so since they don’t have as much experience managing frustration.

To avoid drama, consider giving warnings a few minutes before it’s time to finish an activity.

You could give a one-minute warning with your voice, sound an alarm on your phone a few minutes before, or flash the lights when there are 5 minutes left.

This way, they’ll know what to expect and have an easier time moving to the next thing.

Final Thoughts on How to Work with Kids

There you have it: 6 tips about how to work with kids that you’ll need. Whether you’re new to the industry or have years of experience, there are always things you can do to improve your strategies.

Now that you’ve read through these ideas, it’s time to make a plan.

What tips do you want to incorporate first and how will you do it? What areas of your childcare work need the most improvement? Soon, you’ll see great progress.

Want to learn more? Check out our other news.

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