Leaving your precious child with a babysitter for the first time can be pretty traumatic for parents as you never really know what goes on behind your back. This is especially true if you have got them through an app or babysitting service rather than as a referral from a friend. Babysitters temporarily take care of children who require supervision for a few hours in place of their parents or guardians when they are not able to.
Any parents’ babysitter requirements are that they supervise and ensure the safety of the children, organise activities for them, prepare meals or snacks and help keep them clean. Babysitter expectations are that they will understand what the parents want, follow your rules and do a great job of caring for your children. Babysitter skills include having a genuine passion for working with children with understanding of their needs and requirements. These tips for finding trustworthy babysitters will help you feel confident that your kids are in the best possible hands when you can’t be there with them.
Things to Consider When Hiring a Babysitter
To get a reliable babysitter you need to consider several things as this person will be watching and caring for your child. They will have access to your home and must be trustworthy. Experienced babysitters with the correct training are the best. Babysitters with experience can adjust to your child’s needs and routines. A lot of young people take up babysitting for some extra pocket money. Your children getting along with their babysitters is very important as you want them to feel safe and have fun when you are not there.
- Appropriately Trained, Certified and Experienced
- Isn’t Glued to a Screen
- Leaves the House Tidy
- Checks in With You
- Is Creative
- Runs Things Smoothly
- Genuinely Likes Your Kids
- Takes Care of Your Child
Any babysitter who comes to your home should meet some basic criteria. They need to be professional and act with professionalism at all times. Babysitting is a very demanding job when it comes to babies and little kids, so you should ideally hire babysitters with at least 2 years of experience in this job. It’s essential to check the credentials of a babysitter and verify that they have some sort of formal training, including CPR and first aid courses. A good babysitter will come with references from the families where they have worked before and who have found them to be capable at her work. It is a good idea to ask for specific references to call and documentation of their experience.
It is only natural for you to want your babysitter to have their mobile phone turned on so that they can be reached at any time. But if you get the feeling that a lot of time is being spent on the phone browsing social media or texting friends instead of engaging with your child, it is probably a good idea to go for a change of babysitter.
It is difficult to know how much time your babysitter spends on their phone or tablet while supervising your little one, but if your child is old enough, they should be able to tell you. You would get a fair idea of their screen time if you find your babysitter constantly checking their phone when you are around.
A good babysitter should be respectful of your home and leave the place in the same condition that you left it. Ideally, they should wash any dishes they or your child might have used, tidy up scattered toys and generally straighten up the living room and kitchen. They should also encourage your kids to clean up their own mess.
A reliable babysitter would always check in with you about a house rule they are not sure about. If your kid wants to watch a particular movie or have ice cream after brushing their teeth and they are not sure about the rules, they would call you rather than make a decision on their own. Or they might call you to ask whether it’s okay for your child to play or watch something that they might find questionable. with a toy the sitter finds questionable or otherwise bending the rules. From your side you must assure them that it is okay for them to call you at any time.
Good babysitter skills include not just plonking your kid in front of the TV with some snacks while they do their own thing. They should be able to keep your kid engaged in a creative and imaginative way. Keeping your kid occupied with paints or some art and craft or maybe a singalong is desirable and you can be confident that you have a good babysitter.
If things run smoothly when your babysitter is present, it means that you have a responsible babysitter who is careful with your kid and your belongings. If your child often suffers a minor injury or something in your house gets broken, it would be best to look at another babysitter. Though accidents are bound to happen, it should be the exception rather than the rule and your babysitter should always inform you when it does happen.
Your child’s attitude and reaction to your babysitter is the best indicator of whether you have a good one or not. If your child talks about the fun they had with the babysitter and seems excited and genuinely happy when you tell them they are coming back, chances are that you have a good babysitter. A child crying when you leave them with the babysitter the second time is not a good sign.
A babysitter’s job is just about taking care of your child in the home setting and meeting their immediate needs for that time period. They are not substitute parents but have to look after the safety and needs of the children in their care. They can make a light meal or sandwich but you can’t expect them to make a meal from scratch. They can put your kid to bed but they can’t sleep-train your child.
Getting a reliable babysitter who lives up to all your babysitter expectations is not an easy task. And it is indeed a sweet bonus if your kid and your babysitter hit it off. It is no mean task to find a babysitter who displays all the traits mentioned above but when you do, you can forget all your worries about leaving your child with the babysitter. You should have properly vetted and interviewed your babysitter and done a background check before hiring them. Make sure your child and babysitter are well-acquainted before you leave them alone together. And always trust your instincts when it comes to hiring a babysitter as they are rarely wrong. If you want more information on what to expect from a babysitter and the traits you should be looking for, you could touch base with the EuroKids website.