Discover the Perfect Holistic Nanny: Tips for Embracing Child-Led Learning and Nurturing Development

Discover the Perfect Holistic Nanny: Tips for Embracing Child-Led Learning and Nurturing Development

Nanny at home Have you ever thought about an alternative nanny?! I am excited to share with you my story and tips on how to find a peaceful and holistic person to help you with childcare. I began my Peaceful Learning Nanny Agency journey while living in New Zealand in 2014 when I thought of setting up an alternative nanny agency. As a nanny and teacher myself, I am immersed in the RIE® principles and Magda Gerber's Educaring® Approach. But I also felt the frustration and longing to find the right family after joining countless nanny agencies.
Families usually seek someone who recognises positive guidance, believes in child-led learning and acts as a role-model.
It's been a rollercoaster starting my own agency but I'm now enjoying connecting families with the right nanny. So, what is a holistic nanny? Holistic nannies are dedicated to nurturing all aspects of the child’s development. This includes physical and mental wellbeing as well as the emotional, social and spiritual dimensions.
This is achieved through building secure and responsive relationships with children and enabling them to be active participants in their learning, by supporting child-led play where they can follow their own interests and curiosities.
Child in care of nannyResearch has shown that by fostering holistic development in this way, especially social and emotional wellbeing, children are able to develop resilience, a strong sense of self-worth and a view of themselves as capable, competent and curious learners. I understand that it’s a huge undertaking to find a nanny to invite into your home, who will nurture and care for your precious children, especially someone who has knowledge in and supports attachment parenting. Here are some tips for finding the perfect-fit nanny for your family:

Training Background

To find a nanny who supports a holistic approach, identify which pedagogical models they have experience or training in. There are several pedagogies that advocate for the development of the whole child. These include the educational approaches of Maria Montessori, Waldorf Steiner, Reggio Emilia, Dr Emmi Pikler® and Magda Gerber (RIE®) If you want to search independently for someone with a holistic lifestyle you could advertise in your local yoga/meditation centre or health food store. You could also enquire at your local Montessori or Steiner nursery and advertise in their in-house bulletins.

Take Your Time

Give yourself time to find the right fit for your family. Make sure the nanny is truly passionate about implementing this holistic approach in daily practice. It’s wise to interview a nanny in person and then offer a trial period before committing longer term. This way you have the opportunity to ensure that your parenting philosophy aligns with the nanny’s approach to childcare.

Questions To Ask

Before interviewing a nanny, are you clear about which philosophies you most value? This will inform your questions. For example, you could ask what the environment would look like. How would they react in a situation where a child was pushing a boundary? What would mealtimes look like? What do they think about using the word naughty to describe a child?

Observing BehavioursNanny

Observe how the nanny interacts with your child. Are they appearing respectful and authentic in their communication? Do they kneel down to the child’s level and acknowledge them as soon as they arrive? Do they follow the child’s lead in play rather than push their own agenda? Are their clothes appropriate for engaging in play with children both indoors and out?

Checks and Qualifications

Ask to see their DBS. What is this? It's a background check or police check. It is not a legal requirement for nannies to have one. However we highly recommend that you make sure your nanny completes one. Check at least two references and confirm they’ve completed a recent Paediatric First Aid Course.
If, after the interview or trial period you don’t feel sure about a nanny, it is important to ask yourself why.
Are you anxious about letting go or is there something that just doesn’t feel right about the fit? When recruiting nannies at Peaceful Learning we’ve found that our biggest asset is our instinct, because it tells us so much about a situation that we may not be aware of consciously (read the book Blink by Malcolm Gladwell) There are many amazing nannies out there so trust your heart and if it doesn’t feel right, move on!

Get In Touch

I hope this helps you find the perfect peaceful and holistic nanny for your family! If you have any questions, or would like support with your search, feel free to contact me or visit us at Alternative Nannies