Principles of effective teamwork in childcare help to promote proactive communication, problem-solving and decision-making skills. Skills such as taking turns, listening skills, teamwork, conflict resolution and leadership are essential elements of every child’s growth.

When team members cooperate, support and respect each other, it helps the childcare team achieve common goals. Each member contributes to the workspace, but the whole group is responsible for its success. Understanding each other’s roles and responsibilities enhances your ability to communicate effectively. In Dora the Explorer, Dora always asks for help from her friend Boots, and together they work as a team.

Each childcare team is unique, with its own members, meeting time and culture. Regardless of your team’s size, setting or methods of communication, there are a few key principles that allow your childcare team to run smoothly and reach its goals. Below are 14 key principles of effective teamwork in childcare that you could incorporate in your workplace:


Oftentimes, teams in daycare will need to work together when appropriate to improve the care and education for children. In some cases, the team may have individuals with different skills but working towards the same goal of improving the current system or meeting children’s needs. This is why the principles of effective teamwork in childcare are so crucial to a successful childcare program.

Cross-functional work involves a team of individuals with a variety of skills, but working towards common goals like childcare workers, teachers, speech and language therapists, counselors, etc.

Here are a few good examples of teamwork:

  • Willingness to Share Expertise
  • Complement One Another
  • Rise and Fall Together: When the success of one is dependent on the success of all, team members are more likely to do what needs to be done to pull up those around them

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Clear and Proactive Communications

Effective communication with parents and teachers is a critical part of your job as an educator. Good communication builds understanding and trust, which leads to successful collaboration to support children’s wellbeing and development.

Workplace communication is also essential for the success of a daycare. A clear and effective communication system allows everyone to be on the same page. This helps to enhance productivity because each party (management, co-workers, etc.) will be able to remain updated on internal matters. Below are examples of proper communication you should incorporate into your daycare.


There are times when you may need to communicate with your colleagues to complete projects on time. To do this effectively, it is key that you know how to handle your team.


Show your teammates how to do things or give them new ways to complete tasks. Work with others, either in a group or as individuals; share responsibility for tasks and complete them using accepted practices.

Guiding :

Teamwork often entails guiding each other through steps and taking turns shepherding team members.

Shared Goals

The team works together to establish goals that are realistic and achievable. These goals reflect the child’s and family member’s priorities and can be clearly articulated, understood and supported by all members. Identifying and building common ground is an essential step in the collaborative process of negotiation. As a professional, identifying your goals is one of the first steps. Make sure to follow these three steps before setting and sharing goals with your staff and parents.


Create a mission for your daycare team that you stand behind. The mission will become the sole purpose that drives everything the business does. Our mission is simple: We want to help children flourish in their individualism.

Strategic Goals:

Strategic Goals are the reason we get up in the morning. They move the company in one direction, and if they’re achieved, they help the business achieve the mission.

Tactical Goals (Team and Individual):

Tactical goals are the specific, immediate results you will achieve. From learning new skills to creating a new daycare service and making a sale, your tactical goals will help your childcare team be successful.

Defined Roles

Although the question may seem straightforward, you are probably aware that defining roles and responsibilities in a childcare environment is not always easy. Defined roles are important principles of effective teamwork in childcare. It’s vital to define a person’s role in the business and make sure that each one fulfils his or her specific obligations. It is a serious matter with serious consequences if not handled correctly, especially when managing children. Strategic planning is crucial before making any decisions that will affect the company as a whole. To avoid confusion, ensure that each team member knows what their role entails and what is expected of them.

Mutual Trust

Trust in the workplace promotes an atmosphere of security and respect among employees. Rewarded with a feeling of attachment, they come to regard the organization as their home. This improves communication between both the employer and the employee, thus creating competitive advantages. If you want honest feedback and ideas, trust is the foundation that underpins an effective childcare program. It allows an open environment where people feel comfortable expressing themselves as well as listening to other team members.

Measurable Process & Outcomes

It’s important that your childcare team works together to make sure they always learn and improve. Use any feedback you’re given and make sure any successes and failures are shared. This can be a useful way to grow from possible mistakes or build on what’s working to allow you to provide the best possible care for the children.


Early educators have taken center stage, and that is a good thing. More people than ever before are recognizing how important early education and child development are to all of us. However, it is easy for early educators to feel that the spotlight is too hot. One of the principles of effective teamwork in childcare is being accountable for creating environments and facilitating learning opportunities that support child development and learning in daily schedules. Not only is being accountable important in the childcare realm, but equally important in any workplace environment. Here are ways to be more accountable:


Participating in discussions, tasks or team-building activities.


It’s important for the whole team to contribute to an ongoing review process. As part of this, you should check that the children’s care meets your group’s goals. Team members will feel more creative and motivated if they feel their voice is being heard.


The group depends on the abilities of each team member, so work hard to create a supportive environment and motivate one another to do their best. This will, in turn, help your staff motivate the children.


Working together as a team helps us achieve our goals and provide the best childcare possible.


Childcare teachers’ words and actions can have a big impact on the children. Infants and toddlers will be looking for positive role models. As a teacher, you want to make sure that your body language is respectful when you are dealing with troublesome behavior from children. Also, allowing your employees to display disrespectful or degrading behaviors will result in a poor workplace culture and will likely increase employee turnover. Examples of how to show respect in a daycare to children and staff:


It’s simple. Effective active listening skills are essential to establishing a professional work environment and effective teamwork.


The team must show an open mind and genuine interest in the views of others. They should never be hostile towards the ideas of others, and they should always be respectful of the knowledge acquired by fellow teammates.


When you value individuals on the team, alignment with company goals happens naturally. It’s as easy as listening and adding your own take on what was said.

Commit to Excellence

Keeping kids safe and healthy is important in a high-quality childcare center. In addition, keeping children safe and healthy helps children develop skills they need for success in school and in their lives. It’s important that all staff are always committed to excellence and holding a high standard in the workplace.

Take Advantage of Communication Technologies

Communicating with parents is one of the most important aspects in an educational environment. By using collaboration technology, you can create a more effective and productive relationship between parents and teachers. In this electronic era, adopting technology to better communicate has joined the list of principles of effective teamwork in childcare.

Encourage Shared Leadership

Shared leadership involves maximizing all your staff’s talent in an organization by empowering individuals and giving them an opportunity to take leadership positions in their areas of expertise. Shared leadership builds an environment of trust and respect for each member. When teams define their goals, responsibilities and tactics, they are motivated to succeed. Incorporating leadership and collaboration in the childcare setting allows a team to share a sense of purpose and responsibility to ensure the learning and well-being of children is always the key purpose.


Incorporating patience in a childcare setting is crucial. Losing your temper repeatedly, whether at a child or in reaction to minor troubles, can be a pitfall that children learn to emulate. Having patience in childcare is one of the essential principles of effective teamwork in childcare.

Flexible and Open Mindset

Agreeing on a common goal is essential. But in terms of our children, it shouldn’t be at the cost of suppressing alternative ideas and opinions. Having differing opinions leads to having more ideas, making our childcare teams more ambitious and inclusive; a diverse team is its competitive advantage.

Embrace Diversity

Diversity is important in all workplaces, but especially in daycares. By understanding diversity, children will be able to form positive relationships, especially with other people who do things differently to themselves and their family. Children’s natural curiosity needs to be nurtured and extended to include their friends in the setting. That’s why it’s important to consider diversity in a childcare setting.

Diversity is a simple fact of life. Our everyday experiences are shaped by the people we meet and the communities that produce us. Diversity offers a range of benefits in every setting. For our kids, these benefits are a bit more distinct. Here are a few reasons why diversity is an essential element in childcare:

    • Increased creativity and innovation:

Students are surrounded by people with diverse knowledge, skills, and expertise whom they can call upon in all situations.

    • Nurturing empathy:

When students are exposed to diversity, they may overcome the empathy gap that develops between young children and teenagers.

    • Preparation for future diverse settings in adulthood:

Students are likely to have many different experiences with people. They will be exposed to a wide variety of people, different types of work environments and a variety of cultures as they go forward.

Looking for More Time Saving Resources?

Planning, building and designing a daycare daily schedule takes time, which you and your staff are short on. Avoid the stress of starting from scratch. Check out these daycare schedule templates our team built to simplify the task for you. These schedules are printable and easily editable PDFs you can share with parents looking for greater insights on what their child’s day at your center looks like.

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