What Does a Child Development Practitioner Do?

Child Development Practitioners (620C) plan and organize activities for preschool and school age children. They lead children in activities to stimulate and develop their intellectual, physical and emotional growth.        

Job Related Skills, Interests and Values

  • caring for infants and toddlers
  • develop and implement daily activities for children
  • lead children in activities by telling or reading stories, teaching songs, demonstrating the use of musical instruments, preparing craft materials and demonstrating their use, providing opportunities for creative expression through art, dramatic play, music and physical fitness
  • guide and assist children in the development of proper eating, dressing, and toilet habits
  • working in a sometimes hectic environment
  • observing children's social development and play
  • communicating with parents and other staff members
  • continuously learning about new teaching methods and childcare theories

Additional information on training standards for this particular trades in the Service sector may be found on the Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) website at: http://www.collegeoftrades.ca/wp-content/uploads/Child-Development-Practitioner-620C-Training-Standard-final-ENG-OCT-2013.rev_.pdf

To view the Essential Skills necessary to work in this occupation, click on the following link for Child Development Practitioner and Assistants, NOC code 4214:


What Preparation and Training Do You Need?

In order to register as an apprentice, you must be at least 16 years of age or older in the province of Ontario and have completed Grade 12 or equivalent. High school courses in English, Business Communications would be helpful, and enrolment in cooperative education in this field would be advisable. If you are attending high school, you may benefit from enrolment in a Health and Wellness Specialist High Skills Major Program. For more information, please click on the following link:


Completion of this type of apprenticeship will take 5280 hours of on-the-job training as well as 720 hours of in-school training in classes at a community college. Graduates of the Child Development Practitioner program can choose to specialize in childcare practices for children with disabilities by entering a 3,000 hour Inclusion Practices Child Development Practitioner program. This is the minimum to be apprenticed in this trade under the (OCTAA) Ontario College of Trades Apprenticeship Act (2009). Please note that minimum entry requirements to this and other trades are currently under review by the Ontario College of Trades.

What’s Your Future as a Child Development Practitioner?

Most of the Child Development Practitioners working in this field are female, with 30% working part-time hours. Most work in licensed day care establishments, and with experience may progress to senior positions as Supervisors or Directors. Apprentices in this field may choose to take additional post-secondary education to become Elementary School Teachers. Typical Child Development Practitioner employers include: 

  • Municipal governments
  • Day Care Centres
  • Nursery Schools
  • Personal and Household service firms
  • Private households
  • Pre-school sections of hospitals and schools
  • Social Service organizations
  • Self-employed

Wage Rate

The wage rate in this field varies depending on the employer, childcare setting and experience in the occupation: from a low of minimum wage to a high of $17.00/ hour. 


Ask Yourself: Is Working as a Child Development Practitioner for You?

Do you enjoy working with infants/toddlers?

Yes     No

Do you have good reading, writing, analytical and problem-solving skills?

Yes     No

Can you plan, organize and implement interesting indoor or outdoor activities for young children?

Yes     No

Are you able to bend, stretch, kneel, stand, carry and lift children up to 30 lbs in weight?

Yes     No

Are you interested in gaining knowledge of child development theories and teaching methods?

Yes     No

Do you enjoy working in a hectic team environment interacting with co-workers and parents?

Yes     No

If you answered Yes to most of these questions, Child Development Practitioner may be for you!

You may also want to explore other careers that require similar interests and skills, such as:

  • Elementary School Teacher
  • Educational Assistant
  • Personal Support Worker
  • Adolescent & Youth Worker
  • Nanny

Wildcard SSL Certificates