These free character writing prompts focus on people engaged in the child care industry. Due to two-income households and extremely busy parents, child care has grown by leaps and bounds in the last few decades. As the son of a mother who is in the child care industry, I know that there are high highs and low lows of getting to experience these important moment's in a child's life. Some people involved in child care have had their hands in the development of many children, while some are simply looking for gainful employment. In addition, there are a few child care professionals who are more involved in the lives of kids in their care than the children's parents. This leads to some very interesting dynamics between children and their caretakers.
Free Character Writing Prompts #78: Child Care
1. Every morning he stared for a few minutes at his college degree. He wondered if all the bills he was now paying off were worth it. After all, he hadn't gotten a job in his field of journalism despite his best efforts. Since he couldn't get a job, his mother hooked him up with a family who needed a nanny. He was so proficient at his job that other families in the neighborhood began to snatch him up for evening babysitting jobs. He went from his dream of becoming an editor from some large publication to working 70 hours a week as a child care enthusiast. The thing is, he was actually a better nanny than he ever was an editor and he was raking in a small fortune from these suburban mothers. Had he actually found his calling in child care or was this just a stop in the road on his way to his dream?
2. When he told his parents he wanted to take care of children professionally, they pushed him in the direction of being a pediatrician or a child psychologist. He yielded to their demands for a while and even got so far as medical school before he started his own day care center. He loved the idea of helping kids to grow, not to heal them when they were at their lowest, like the professions his parents forced him into. He didn't want to see children in pain, he wanted to see happy kids and to help them to become happier. He knew that to appease his parents though, his business would need to make as much money as a doctor and he struggled every day with the business side of things. Will he ever be able to convince his parents that this is what he's meant to be doing?
3. Her kids were all grown up now and they'd moved out of the house to start their own lives. She missed lugging around her boys and thought long and hard about getting back into the parenting business for someone else's kids. She found a job as a nanny for a pair of lawyers who were too busy to deal with the day-to-day kid-related tasks. As a mom, she was perfect for the job and she'd always wanted to have a girl. This job would give her three of them. There were conflicts from time to time as she wasn't as fast as she used to be, making it difficult to chase the little tykes around. Despite some issues every now and then, she felt completely renewed and she spoke about her "second family" whenever she got the chance. What are some of the things she likes the most about nannying?
4. She had scored one of the cushiest jobs for an actress in the big city: a nanny gig. A great deal of her friends who were slaving away at temp jobs were completely jealous of her job, which paid more and had better hours. What they didn't know was that it was tough work! It was true that she had no trouble acting silly with them and keeping them entertained, but there were tears and colds and bathroom issues to deal with. The parents wouldn't always get home on time, making her late to rehearsal and hangouts. Despite these difficulties, she wouldn't trade her job for the world, as it was giving her valuable experience for the far off day (she hoped) when she would become a mom herself. What are some of the ways in which she uses her acting talents to entertain the kids?
5. You and your spouse were hesitant before the interview, after all, how many male nannies had they ever even heard of before? Still, they wanted to be open-minded about the process and when they met him, they were glad they did. He was the most organized, well-trained and kind person they had ever met. He showed them pages and pages of references, certificates and even hand-drawings previous kids he'd watched had made him. They watched him with their infant for a few minutes and they were amazed to find that he was much more level-headed with him than they ever could be. He was the perfect manny. For formality's sake, they waited a day before hiring him for the next five years. How did this individual become so good at his job?
6. He was pretty much your last ditch effort. Your kids were pretty close to being old enough to watch themselves but you knew you needed a semi-adult to keep an eye on them in case they did anything stupid. Bring in your next door neighbor's son who wasn't exactly the sharpest of saws. He'd asked on more than one occasion if he could watch your kids over the last couple of years, and he was perfectly nice, despite being a complete moron. You'd heard your neighbor talking about the dumb things their son had done when he was younger, such as almost burning down the house on multiple occasions. But you hoped that he'd become more mature over the last few years because you absolutely had to have a night to yourselves for your sanity. When he came over wearing a marijuana propaganda T-shirt, 20 minutes late, you wondered if you made the right decision. Describe this babysitter's evening trying to make sure that he and your kids wouldn't do something stupid.
7. She was elderly, infirm and she didn't get around nearly as well as when she watched her kids. Oh, and she was absolutely free because she was your mother-in-law. She absolutely loved to be responsible for your kids and gave you a much needed date night every two weeks or so. You weren't sure exactly what she and the kids did together but afterwards it seemed like both parties were completely beaming. Your kids wanted her to come back as often as possible and your mother-in-law felt the same way. You had to know what they were doing that was so fun as to nearly prefer her over you and your spouse. You set up a hidden teddy-cam to find out the answer. What are they doing while you're on your date night and why is it so fun?
8. She could not believe how long it took her parents to leave her alone with her little brother. They finally trusted her to watch over him after years of her begging to do it. She loved her brother, even though he could be a pain sometimes and she really wanted to take care of him for a whole evening. She had it all planned out, she would make him a snack and they'd watch a movie together. It would be amazing. There was only one problem. While she was making the snack, her brother snuck out of the house and she couldn't find a trace of him. Will she be able to resolve the situation before her parents come home and will they ever trust her again?
9. When your father, a retired Army colonel, said he wanted to watch your kids for the night to give you two a night on the town, you were worried. Your dad wasn't always around due to constant touring and training but when he was, he was quite the disciplinarian. You felt like he had a tough time discerning between kids and Army recruits. Then again, since you and your spouse were quite pacifistic, perhaps your kids could stand for their butts to be kicked a bit. You gave it a shot and noticed the next day that your children were acting a bit differently. They were actually behaving. What did your dad do with the kids to get them more in line?
10. After receiving the news that she'd never be able to have children of her own, she decided to devote her life to taking care of kids that weren't hers. She started by watching her sister's kids whenever her sister had to go out of town. She followed it up by volunteering at Church every Sunday watching the kids of the congregation. Eventually, she got several certifications and began working in a high-end day-care facility, surrounding herself with kids every day. When she met her husband, a single-father whose wife had passed a few years earlier, she was overjoyed that she finally had the chance to raise a child of her own for the long haul. Will she ever attempt to utilize a fertility clinic to attempt to have a child of her own flesh and blood?
Did you enjoy these character writing prompts? Keep an eye out for the book 1,000 Character Writing Prompts in February 2012.
Bryan Cohen is the author of more than 30 books, many of which focus on creative writing and blasting through that pesky writer's block. His books have sold more than 20,000 copies. You can find him on Google+ and Facebook.