There’s certainly no room for stage fright when it comes to entertaining groups of energetic children, but that’s no problem for performing arts graduate Grace Stainton-Roy.

The 18-year-old recently completed her Early Years Educator Level 3 apprenticeship on a course run by Interserve Learning & Employment. She decided to embark on a career in child care after realising she had an interest in helping children to develop and express themselves through arts and music. With her previous experience in the creative arts, Grace was a great fit for a placement at a local nursery.

Working under the supervision of the deputy room leader, who themselves started off their own career as an apprentice, Grace blended her coursework with practical experience.  During her time with the nursery Grace was able to utilise her existing creative talent, discover new skills and earn her qualification at the same time.

A typical day for Grace would involve things like setting up and leading activities, helping with the children’s snacks and lunches and participating in sing-alongs. In the afternoons Grace would assist with keeping the nursery clean and safe, participating in games and providing feedback to parents.

Talking about her experience Grace said: “I learnt and continue to learn so much through being in the setting. I really admire my deputy room leader; she has an amazing work ethic as well as a wonderful way with the children. I can learn a lot from her.”

Completing the apprenticeship not only gave Grace the chance to get to grips with the practical side of working with children, but also allowed her to participate in further training in subjects like safeguarding, autism awareness and Makaton – a language programme designed to provide a means of communication to those who struggle to speak efficiently.

“I enjoy forming bonds with the children and seeing that I’m making a difference to the children’s development and early life. Some children that are full time can sometimes end up spending more time with us and having a strong bond with a child makes it really special. We are helping these children to develop into the people they’re going to become in a few years and that is really rewarding.”

Having gained so much and with so many new skills to utilise in her career, Grace is keen to encourage anyone else who might be thinking about signing up for an apprenticeship and is keen to offer the following advice to any potential new learners: “It is going to be hard work managing your work-life balance as well as completing coursework, but it’ll all pay off at the end of it. You will have gained a new qualification, a lot of experience and met many new and different people.”

If you think a career in childcare could be for you, take a look at our course options here – (https://learning-employment.com/apprentices/) or call 0333 444 5055 and speak to one of our friendly team members.

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