Thursday

Male Childcare Providers: A profile of three great educators…

Friday, June 27, 2008
Male Childcare Providers: A profile of three great educators…
(names have been changed to protect the innocent and nawt hawt)
Guest Column by UMassSlytherin

I would like to take this opportunity to express my opinion on males in childcare. My opinions are based on values as well as extensive childcare experience. I think if there were more males in childcare it would not only benefit the children, the daycare centers, and the female workers, but would also benefit society at large. I have been fortunate enough to have worked with several males over the course of my childcare career, and I have to say that the males I worked with were excellent, superior teachers. Hopefully this article will shed some light on why I feel this way. I will profile three random males I have worked with, although there have been several. I will begin by listing their vital stats, including age, where I worked with them, any children they have, marital status, sexual orientation, level of education, and for those of you who are interested in this sort of thing, if they were hawt or nawt.


Greg
Preschool teacher
College educated
Straight
Age 40-45
High-end chain daycare
Parent of 7 year old girl
Divorced
Nawt that hawt

Greg I found interesting as well as quirky. He was, to be perfectly honest, not well-liked by many of the other teachers, who were all female. He did used to do some things that were quite odd, including coming to the center early to wash his laundry in the center laundry room, including his underwear which I suppose some of the ladies found offensive. But I liked him, and my late mother, who worked there as well in the Toddler room, liked him ok. Greg's daughter was a child actor, and being someone who has always been fascinated with celebrities, I found this extremely interesting. One time Greg even showed me her resume and photos.

Well, getting back to Greg, he was a pretty good preschool teacher from what I remember. He used to come up with all these cool obstacle-course games for the kids to play, and he was very patient with me as far as teaching me how to deal with the children regarding re-direction and discipline. The children really dug him, because he seemed sort of like a big kid himself. I think most of the teachers didn't like him maybe because they were sort of jealous of how much the kids dug him. I really think that's what it was. He wasn't any weirder than anybody else. He really wasn't. Men get a bad rap, they really do. Ok. Next.


Gerry
3 year old teacher
College educated
Sexual orientation unknown
Age 35-40
State-funded daycare
No children
Never married
Sort of hawt

Gerry was one no doubt one of the best childcare providers I have ever come in contact with, not to mention one of the nicest people I have ever met. He, like Greg, was a bit quirky as well, but was largely respected at the daycare we worked at for a few reasons. One, it was in a different part of the state, a part of the state which was way more liberal than the daycare in which Greg, the underwear-washer, worked at. It was a very earthy-crunchy area to be honest, and males in childcare were way more accepted there.

Gerry taught the children who were between the ages of 2 and 3, the older toddlers, which we all know are a challenge. Gerry was excellent at potty-training and no parents ever seemed to feel uncomfortable with him pottying their little girls or boys. Gerry was such a kind person, and so funny, too. He was such a skilled childcare provider, as well as super organized. I remember asking him why all the blocks had to be put back on the right shelves, and feeling frustrated about that, and he looked at me like I was dumb (which I was) and explained to me that the children could learn to organize the blocks and that they should do it because it was good for them and good for the classroom. And you know something? He was right. I wish I could be a more organized person. But I'm just not.

Gerry was always very caring and kind to me, and I appreciated that. He made the classroom a very nice place to be, and the kids responded well to a male voice. He was so great at reading to the children, He commanded respect from the children, but also loved them which was clear in the way he treated them. There was a lot of laughter in the room. He later became the Pre-school/Pre-K teacher and I took over his position as lead teacher in the older toddler room, but I wasn't nearly as good as he was. The room lost a lot when he moved over, it really did.


Tom
Pre-school teacher
College educated
Straight
Age 25-30
Private high-end daycare
No children
Single
Reasonably hawt

Tom was a pre-school teacher in one of the daycares that I worked at. He was a quiet sort of guy and did not have much to say. I don't think he liked me much since I am the opposite, and quite silly and all. He never seemed to think it was funny when I asked him questions regarding hawt B-list celebs and if he could help me come up with strategies to contact them. He was very much a "by the book" type of teacher if you want to know the truth, and didn't seem to think some of the things I did were amusing. For instance, once when he was in the mobile infant room covering for breaks, he happened to see the game I was playing with the children, which incidentally was "Pretend Communion." (That's just using cheerios to help the children practice for receiving their first communion.) Tom asked me what I was doing and when I explained to him that we were just practicing for one of the important sacraments, he patiently explained to me that not all the children were Catholic and we'd better play something else please. I thought he was right and all, and we stopped playing.

Regarding males changing diapers and stuff, Tom used to do this but at this daycare there was a big open bathroom and changing area, so he was never alone. I don't think anyone would have had a problem with that: Tom seemed very nice and not weird at all. He was just awfully quiet and stuff, but we are all different, and I think that's ok. I liked him, even if he didn't like me much. He was a nice guy. The children enjoyed being with him. They really did.

******
In closing, I would just like to say that I think more males should be in childcare and that while hiring a male nanny is obviously up to a parent, I think it's silly to not hire males for the profession. And yes, males as well as females have to be careful these days in how they treat children and not get too intimate and stuff, which is sad but true. Just like in public school, you have to tone it way down now as a teacher. I remember the teachers hugging me and stuff and you don't see that anymore really because of lawsuits and accusations. But just because someone is male doesn't mean they are a pedophile. There are tons of female teachers who we read about every day who are just as bad and stuff. But males in childcare are a good thing, in my humble opinion. They bring so much to the children and to the center. It is good for children to see that males can be skilled early childhood educators too.

Regarding whether or not these males are hawt: none of the males I have worked with have been that hawt, unfortunately. However, I think it's ok to hire hawt males because it's fun to have hawt guys around your work environment. It can only put you in a better mood, right? Right.

Peace out, and God Bless all early childhood educators, male and female, hawt and nawt hawt.

48 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am sorry but what does a man's sexual orientation and his "hawt" status have to do with their childcare abilities? Why is it necessaary to put this information into this Column? Do you think that these male teachers would appreciate you including this information? Should this be included in all nanny sighting posts?

Anonymous said...

Very good point op. Not all males are pedophiles. I would have no problem with a male child care worker changing, or helping potty train my child.

Anonymous said...

It's a Guest column, and I think it's really amusing.
Good job, Umass!

UmassSlytherin said...

anon @ 6:30,
to answer your questions:

1. It has nothing to do with it.

2. I felt it was neccesary to put it in my article because I thought it was interesting. Should you wish to write an article on this topic, you may choose not to include such info. yay for America.

3. No, I do not think all male teachers would appreciate my including this info. As stated, I have changed all names to protect the innocent and nawt hawt. Again, yay for America!

4. Yes, I think hawt status should be included in all nanny siting posts, although it is doubtful that it will be.

Have a great day!! :)

Anonymous said...

I am curious why you could not just spell "hot" the correct way, unless, of course, "hawt" is an acronym of some sort that I am not aware of?

Anonymous said...

this is insufferable! As a recovering catholic I would FLIP if some idiot taught my kids about taking communion in a non-denomintaional pre school. You sound like a terrible child care provider.

UmassSlytherin said...

9:53,
you liked that part, huh?
:)

Anonymous said...

Umass
I really like your attitude!

9:53
I think she was naive, for lack of a better word. At least she had the guts to put her mistake out there. She could've easily kept it to herself and not gotton jumped on.

Umass, I have to say, you have a sense of humor like I've never seen. Some people should just learn to kick their shoes off and relax.

UmassSlytherin said...

thank you anon @ 10:35, for the love. At the time of that story, I was quite young and my sense of humor was even more twisted than it is now.

Notice I did not dispuit the fact that I am an idiot. I quite agree.

The truth hurts, but only if you let it. :)

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, but that was so poorly written. It was almost as if I was reading an early high school paper. I couldn't get past the first paragraph with the "insert point here" outline. Wow.

seattlenanny said...

"Pretend Communion."


ROFL!!!!

Oh my goodness I would have SO been fired if I ever did this in any of the centers I worked at. One, run by the state of California was so careful about the whole religion thing that we weren't able to even use red and green around Christmas time in our art projects because parents might think we we're celebration Christmas.

UmassSlytherin said...

11:37,
If you enjoyed that, you should check out my blog.
It's a crowd-pleaser for sure!

UMASS MINUTEMEN RUUUULE!!!!!!!

Miserly Bastard said...

Men should not work in childcare, period. I just think it is weird. But I'm naturally suspicious; I'm not even sure I like the idea of male teachers, except to the extent that somebody has to teach math/science. (That's a joke, by the way, ladies; keep your panties on.)

Anonymous said...

MB
Do you mean to be sexist?
Or is it just natural?

.... all in good fun.

UmassSlytherin said...

Miserly Bastard, :) :) :)

That was extremely hilarious, almost as hilarious as the email I recently sent to Corin Nemec asking him if Scientology was the same as Fan Fiction.

heehee
heehee

:)

Anonymous said...

Umass
I saw this post and thought for sure you'd get a little crap for it, and I think you're being a real trooper!
Love the comebacks! You're very clever!

UmassSlytherin said...

Yes, I also anticipated getting crap. Thank you, anon. Minutemen, are by nature, troopers.
:)

Anonymous said...

I couldn't read this after seeing the words hawt and nawt. OP obviously spends time at community.livejournal.com/ohnotheydidnt where the annoying misspelling of words is the cool thing to do.

UmassSlytherin said...

12:54,

Although it is true that I spend large amounts of time unwisely, I really have not been to that site.

I may visit it now, however, at your glowing recommendation.
thank you. :)

Anonymous said...

LOL, so funny!

JerseyXJacqui said...

She sounds like a terrible childcare provider because she made an innocent mistake while playing what she thought was just a fun game?
Be rational.
I wouldn't have done it, but I also don't see what the huge deal is as a one time, "OOPS" kind of deal. Those non-religious/practicing/Jewish/Muslim/Buddhist etc etc etc kids aren't going to convert based on a little game they played when they were 3 years old. They aren't going to be brainwashed. They probably won't even remember it. Sheesh. Umass actually sounds like she was an awesome childcare provider. Really fun and involved. Her kids are lucky to have such a good mommy.

Which leads me to this: I just heard something about Modesto California teaching world religion as part of their required curriculum in public schools. They'll be covering all major world religions, apparently objectively and without bias. As a self proclaimed Atheist, I think this is a GREAT idea. Children should be educated about religion, not conditioned to it. I was allowed to choose, from a fairly young age what religion I wanted to follow, if any at all. Considering I grew up in a very Catholic area, I often times attended the Catholic church with a friend of mine and her family (my parents were never religious and we never went to church)...I decided it wasn't for me. I then dabbled a little in Judaism with my ONE Jewish friend at the time...again, not for me. I appreciated the strength and faith people derived from their beliefs and each other, but I couldn't get the shoe to fit around my own belief system (though young, I had my beliefs and moral code). I wish I would have had the chance to be educated at an early age, different religions. I think that really has the potential to promote tolerance, if nothing else.

UmassSlytherin said...

lol thanks jj! :) but the children were only 12 months. lol

and I knew at the time it was wrong, I was just doing it to give people a laugh and to stir up ****. While it was, in retrospect, an inappropriate gag, I would never have done it with the 3 year olds.

:) but thanks for the support! And I totally agree with what you said about tolerance: how right you are!!

Anonymous said...

11:37 here...I must confess, I love your blog...you should stick to that style and not the more formal type. I might have developed a crush on you now.

cali mom said...

Cool Umass, it's great to hear about the male childcare providers! Admittedly, I do live in a very "earthy-crunchy area" as you put it, and I've met a couple male nannies (my own for that short time and a children's music teacher who also used to nanny) but I agree, it would be great to see it happen more. I mean, for all the dumb stereotypes that exist about males in childcare, just think about how people used to scoff at the notion of a woman being a firefighter, or a judge, or a civil engineer. The dads that work at my son's preschool are wonderful, and it would be awfully dumb if there was some rule that only the moms were allowed to participate in the classrooms at co-op schools.

UmassSlytherin said...

I am speechless. May Michael Pitt's love shine on you, anon 11:37.

LindaLou said...

funny stuff, UMass. :)

and Miserly, trust us, we'll all be leaving our panties ON in your presence. :::shudder:::

Anonymous said...

You have kids umass? You sound 17. Your post cracked me up. Rock on.

Hellcat said...

This entire article stunk of junior high.

UmassSlytherin said...

Yes, 4:17, I have been told before that I am juvenile. Thank you for reading.

Hellcat,
I know you are, but what am I?

Anonymous said...

umass,

I am interested to know if any parents had any issues with a male changing or taking their child to the bathroom???
Great post by the way.

UmassSlytherin said...

7:07,
no, not in my own experience, or at least to my own knowledge.

and thank you for reading.

Anonymous said...

7:07 again,

Any co-workers have any problems with it?

UmassSlytherin said...

No, not with the bathrooming. Not to my knowledge.

Anonymous said...

I think children of all ages can benefit from more males involved in their care and education, whether it be as daycare providers, mannies or teachers; especially since so many dads work very long hours, or travel frequently, and of course some children don't have a father present.
If children see men in these positions, maybe they will grow up to respect these jobs as valuable to society.

Anonymous said...

Not sure I exactly get this post. But I think most reasonable, intelligent people can agree that although most men are not pedophiles, the vast majority of men are not ideal for childcare. I am sure the men you listed are exceptions, although the relevance of some of the info is questionable. I still think there is a reason mostly women work with young children. After all, no matter what anyone says it IS weird for a grown man to help a little girl in the bathroom. Sorry, it just is. But I do think there is a special influence that only a man can have on kids.

seattlenanny said...

When I was Program Supervisor at my old job (private preschool) I had to call the only male employee into the office numerous times. One day when a parent walked by the classroom he was in she noticed him rolling on the ground with one of our female teachers tickling her. OH SHEESH! The fires I had to put out when that guy was employed. You're never going to believe this but one morning him and another teacher (a female, but not the one he was rolling on the floor with the previous week) were an hour late getting to work. I called them in the office and they said they carpooled in and had "car trouble." One of the gossipy teachers came and told me later in the day that these two were talking about getting it on before coming into work AND they were telling the other teachers about it on the PLAYGROUND!!!

I'm disappointed I've never been able to work with an awesome guy teacher. Nothing melts my heart more than seeing a guy who is good with children.

Hallelujah I'm a nanny now and don't have to put up with drama anymore.

Anonymous said...

12:40, I don't really see why it's any weirder for a grown man to help a little girl in the bathroom than it is for a grown woman to help a little boy in the bathroom. I just don't see it. Don't you think fathers have ANY role or responsibility at ALL in potty training?

UmassSlytherin said...

12:40,
You are not alone. Many, many people do not get me. It's not you, trust me. And you are correct to question the relevance of some of the info.

However, I must disagree with your statement that it is wierd for a man to assist a little girl in the bathroom, depending on the circumstance. In a daycare setting, when a teacher has gone through all the proper background checks, it is not weird in my opinion. Now, does that mean I would ask some strange dude in the park to help my daughter while I go and run to buy the latest issue of Tiger Beat? (I only read it sometimes.) Absolutely NOT.

Everything in my opinion is relative. But I did like your post. It was insightful.

Anonymous said...

1:37,

well, i understand what you mean but i still disagree.

women are completely different from men regarding dealing with young children. while i do think women can help both boys and girls in the bathrooms, EXCEPT FOR fathers, i wouldn't feel comfortable with men helping either gender. i also find that most parents would not want a male nanny for this reason.
it is sexist. sorry but it's true.

like i said, there are rare exceptions and there IS a special gift only men can bring. but with YOUNG children, women are much more naturally skilled and suited for the job. we are child-bearers and we have the natural maternal instincts. (whether or not we are mothers yet)

cali mom said...

Yes, absolutely. And since men are naturally strong and have the hunter/predator instinct, (whether they have actually killed someone or not) and the stronger capacity for logical thought, not ruled by random emotions, they are much more naturally suited to the job of police officer or judge than women, who are best suited for bearing children and changing diapers. I'm so glad we can all agree on this. *** roll eyes ***

erics mom said...

The only male I trust with my son is my husband, his father.

LindaLou said...

LMAO, calimom. :)

Anonymous said...

12:40 AM
"the vast majority of men are not ideal for childcare."

The vast majority of men are fathers! Now days fathers are expected to be much more hands on than in previous generations, and guess what.......it turns out dads can do a great job!

And the reason mostly women work with young children, is because it is poorly paid. Try to support a family on a preschool teachers salary.

Anonymous said...

Excellent point, 11:37.

Anonymous said...

This was a really, really good (fun) post to read!

Anonymous said...

as a male nanny and former preschool teacher myself i wanted to say thanks :) its uplifting to know that my services are worthwhile and that I am needed. I really enjoyed this post it was quite humourous(sp?) and uplifting.

As for the comment about it being weird that men are in ECE or that it is weird or innapporpriate that men take kids of either gender to the bathroom.

Calimom's post at 2:49 sums that up quite well what i would say. thanks Calimom! Ill add that i dont like doing the job of changing diapers and taking kids to the bathroom, but im not going to stand there all day and wait for someone else to do my job for me. No parent I worked with had any qualms over me doing so, and even agreed to the fact that, the worst part could be changing diapers or doing bathroom duty, but hey even parents have to go through it, my co-workers tried to force me not to do it for my own protection, ie false accusations etc. but like i said how?! when i am in a room in full view of the entire staff and parents, and i always keep one foot in the bathroom door and one foot out so I am visible, i always made sure i was visible and not alone with the kids I advised and my director advised everyone (male and female of the such) i left the feild of teaching cause i was tired of being forced to tell parents I cant do this and that and get weird looks by parents, because of it, just cause i was a guy, but above all it was due to the pay, and the flexibility. now as a nanny i still change diapers in view of the parents, if i am babysitting alone i tell the child what i am doing and also let them know that they can always come by unannoucned, to check in, ) mom and dad find it weird that i do that but i say its always a force of habit, and one im not really willing to break. as a nanny/preschool teacher you learn precautions from the start.

Anonymous said...

Who cares gay or straight? look at all the Catholic priests, probably gay and looking for an outlet for the frustration.

Again who care if a guy is gay or straight to watch kids? Or if you think he ois good lookng--if that is what "hwat" means. Not sure though, slang was not taught in college.

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