Understand Childcare Roles

Thinking about a career in childcare, such as becoming an au pair, governess, or nanny? This choice is more than just a job; it’s a chance to have a lasting positive impact on the lives of children.

However, stepping into this role requires a solid understanding of what it entails, including the responsibilities and the nature of the work itself.

Exploring a Career in Childcare?

Deciding to become an au pair, governess, or nanny is significant. It’s not just about choosing a job; it’s about committing to the growth and development of young minds. This decision demands a thorough comprehension of the job’s demands and nuances.

Before you agree to work with a family, it’s crucial to grasp the full scope of your childcare role. Knowing what’s expected of you ensures you’re prepared for the job and can meet the family’s needs effectively. Engaging in open and honest communication with the family is key to establishing a clear understanding of your role and aligning your goals with theirs.

Your Role in Childcare

At the heart of these childcare roles is a commitment to the well-being of the children you’re entrusted with. Fully understanding your duties not only enables you to provide the best possible care but also ensures a harmonious and fulfilling relationship with both the children and their family.

Embrace the opportunity to make a difference in children’s lives. Get acquainted with the specific responsibilities and duties of your role, whether you’re an au pair, governess, or nanny, and embark on this rewarding journey.

Breaking Down Childcare Roles

Au Pair:

  • A young enthusiast, usually between 18 to 30 years old, dedicated to providing top-notch childcare.
  • Should have completed high school, possess a first aid certification or have completed an Emergency Course, and possibly have higher education.
  • Often brings skills from teaching backgrounds, has a driver’s license, and access to a vehicle.
  • Typically works from Monday to Friday, with occasional weekend duties, focusing on educational support, transportation (Au Pair Petrol Guide), and running light errands, excluding house cleaning.

Junior Au Pair:

  • A beginner in the au pair world, with up to one year of experience.
  • May still be working on au pairing courses or obtaining first aid certification.
  • Primarily assists with educational activities and often commits to a 6-12 month period.

Senior Au Pair:

  • An experienced professional dedicated to providing exceptional childcare.
  • Usually older than 24, with several courses completed, including an au pair course for au pairs and first aid.
  • Boasts over 3 years of experience and holds formal qualifications in childcare.
  • Provides educational support and is prepared for longer commitments.

Live-in Au Pair:

  • Brings over 3 years of experience to the family’s home.
  • Earns a competitive monthly salary and holds the appropriate qualifications for the role.

Overseas Au Pair:

  • Takes the initiative to work with families abroad.
  • Equipped with Au Pair Training and First Aid certification.
  • Engages actively in the children’s learning experiences during family trips.


  • A highly educated professional focusing on customised education for children.
  • Possesses a robust educational background and experience in private tutoring.
  • Collaborates closely with parents, sometimes overseeing light household tasks, and lives with the family to ensure comprehensive child development.


  • Specialises in daily childcare, backed by over 3 years of experience and relevant certifications.
  • Involved in the children’s day-to-day life and, in South Africa, handles housekeeping duties.
  • Often lives with the family, prioritising the children’s well-being and educational growth.

While governesses and nannies play a crucial role in the daily nurturing of children, au pairs have distinct roles and requirements, tailored to fit the needs of the families they serve.

Considering a leap into childcare?

Start by downloading our FREE Au Pair Handbook or exploring the various opportunities available to you.

Dive into our childcare courses designed for au pairs, nannies, tutors, and more. This is your chance not just to dream about making a difference, but to arm yourself with the knowledge and skills needed to make a tangible impact on children’s lives. Discover, learn, and embark on a fulfilling career path with The Au Pair Club.

Au Pair Circle

Au Pair Handbook

Unlock the Secrets of Au Pairing

Discover the ultimate guide to becoming an exceptional au pair with our comprehensive and FREE Au Pair Handbook. Packed with valuable insights, practical tips, and expert advice, this handbook is your go-to resource for navigating the exciting world of au pairing!

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