A good babysitter is easy to define if she is really good at doing her job.
However, it isn’t always easy to judge based on one or two actions. Not every skillful babysitter has the same practice, but they are still able to do their jobs and can be great babysitters.
There are a number of guidelines that both parents and babysitters should follow. We encourage you all to give attention to our list… while it might not be perfect, we think it provides a strong foundation.
It’s able and good enough help our kids stay safe.
For parents, if you aren’t sure how to recognize how good the babysitter is, then this is a blog designed for you.
For babysitters, you can get much more knowledge and training on childcare and childrearing. But for now, let’s just remind and learn.
Listed below, will remind you what you need to know before your work starts so you can get ready for any consequences that might harm you or the child. Sound serious?
Let’s dive in.
1. Puts everything in the right places, like knives and everything else on the floor. And locks the doors.
The safety of the child is our first priority. Always make sure that there is nothing within the reach of a child that could hurt him.
Children are very curious and might not know how dangerous an object is. Thus, they may get hurt if they end up handling a knife, scissors, screwdrivers or any other rough or sharp objects.
Even if the babysitter prepares food in the kitchen, she should never leave cutlery on the edge of the table or countertop where a child might reach it. Everything must be cleaned and put away in a safe place, where the small ones do not have access.
Also, if she sees something on the floor that might trip the children or may prove dangerous, she should pick it up. Not to mention that a babysitter must keep the doors locked.
2. Ask parents questions about what their children enjoy doing.
When starting a job with a new family, it takes a while to get to know the child and learn his behavior and attitude. To make the connection easier, a great babysitter will always ask his parents about his favorite activities.
Thus, when she starts her first day at work, she will already know how to manage the time spent with the child and help him have a great time by doing the things he likes. Some children may be self-effacing when it comes to staying with new persons so they may have trouble expressing their wishes or may not be talkative on the first day.
So knowing what their favorite things are will give you an advantage and will encourage them to like you faster. Also, you, as a parent, will be thrilled to see that the babysitter cares and shows an interest in the child’s favorite things to do.
3. Are they having trouble falling asleep? Here are a few exercises to help them fall asleep.
Is the child the type that falls asleep easily or do you have a hard time convincing them to go to bed?
Well, you can’t just ask them to go to sleep and expect that they will go to sleep like that.
It all starts with routines. Maintaining a routine will help the child with the transition to bedtime. For example:
1. Do not feed them when it’s time to go to bed.
2. If it’s night, make sure they don’t sleep in the evening too long. If they are tired out from the day’s earlier activities, then they are more likely to fall asleep easier.
3. Avoid scary stories or movies.
4. Get them to relax and feel comfortable by giving them a bath and changing them into pajamas.
5. You may have to body pat them on the back for a while before they are totally asleep
4. Make sure to ask the parents if the kids have any special needs or problems that you should be aware of.
This is another aspect you should consider as a babysitter. Not all children are the same, and some might have some issues that need additional attention and care. Show parents that you care by asking if the child has any particular needs or problems that you should know about, by doing this you can avoid any unpleasant surprises.
Such issue may be allergies to specific foods or other allergens, some health or behavioral issues, things the children hate or are scared of. For the parents, these aspects might be a regular part of the life, so unintentional they might forget to tell you about these things.
So it is safer for you to know, to avoid creating any issues for the child or know how to react if something happens, like an allergic reaction.
5. Keep in mind that the parents might ask the kids if you were fun, nice, or cool to be around.
So always keep the kids occupied and happy!
If they don’t ask the child while you are still present, they will definitely do it after you leave. They will want to know the child’s opinion about you. So you should try hard to help the child have a great time, because if he doesn’t like spending time with you, there is a high chance the parents will dismiss you and find someone else.
Parents want to know their children are happy, so it is important for the children to appreciate you and love the time they spend with you.
6. Watch what the kids eat.
As a babysitter, you should always be aware of what the children are eating. Some parents may ask you to follow a schedule of when their children sleep and eat.
Choking is one of the many reasons you should be aware of what they are eating and when.
This is why it is so crucial to be there all the time, to see if they eat correctly and make sure nothing goes wrong.
7. Keep kids, especially young ones, away from the electrical outlets.
Watch them so that they don’t stick their fingers or anything else in the sockets, as it is extremely dangerous. If you can, you can make some suggestions for the family to use as a prevention method.
Well, that was a good enough title to explain how crucial this issue is!
As a sitter, you may start observing the area.
If the house hasn’t got electrical outlets with a child-proof system, you may need to keep a constant eye on the child around the house. Also, you can make a few suggestions for the parents, to keep them safe at all times.
• Install sockets with child protection.
• Explain to the child just how dangerous water and electricity are together.
• Unplug electrical appliances when you are not around or go to bed.
• Never leave hot appliances on the end of the table or in reach of the children.
• Have the electric installation checked out to make sure everything works correctly and there aren’t any dangers of a short-circuit.
• Use bar type socket extensions with a child-proof system.
8. Be careful with sharp objects, like pencils, as they might hurt children.
Especially their eyes when they use them while lying with their face downward. So, the safest way is always in an upright position using a chair.
Drawing can be a fun activity to do with the children, but don’t encourage them to draw on the floor. They might slip or not be careful about how they handle pencils, and they might end up hurting their eyes. It is better if you sit at a table and draw safely.
Also, make sure that they don’t stick the pencils in their nose or ears and risk hurting themselves. Sitting on a chair will help them to be more focused, and you can help them learn what the correct position for sitting is, helping them develop a good spine.
According to Dr. Michael Stosich, allowing them to bite a pencil will not only cause trouble but also will make their teeth protrude.
9. Be careful with pet claws
If the family has a pet, that’s great. Children will learn all about being responsible and will be less susceptible to allergies. Having a pet is great for their psyche and immune system, as it has been proven in medical studies that children that grow up with pets are not that sensitive to allergens.
Still, make sure you watch them if they play together, as the pet might hurt them accidentally.
10. Bad sleep positions that will make the child’s hand, for example, go numb.
A numb limb can be scary for a child. He will not know what it is happening and might wake up crying. So check on the baby while sleeping and see if he is correctly positioned in his sleep.
If you notice his hand is underneath his body, try to gently turn the child in his sleep and release the hand before going numb
Bad situations during babysitting may come in many different forms.
With just these 10 examples, we can’t explain and predict every situation that might occur. But these should help prevent or address some of the common problems that arise.
Based on your experiences and findings, please leave your comment so we can brainstorm more ideas on how to avoid or address possible safety issues during babysitting.