I'm trying to expand this blog to cover information that will appeal and offer helpful information to parents with older children, not just preschool. So whether you have an infant, toddler, preschooler, or older child, keep checking my blog for all things parenting.
Today, I'm focusing on Tweens. Has your child asked you about starting to babysit? Here is a helpful checklist to give to your tween to see if he/she can answer these questions. Is the job right for them? Let's find out!
BABYSITTING: ARE YOU READY FOR THIS RESPONSIBLE JOB?
During the tween years, it’s normal to begin your first paying jobs: mowing lawns, walking dogs, or babysitting. These activities help to build a sense of independence as well as teach the importance of scheduling, dependability and managing finances. Babysitting is more than watching small children while their parents are away from home; it’s a real job that demands responsibility and full-time attention. Can you handle this task? Below is a checklist to see if this job is for you!
§ Are you comfortable staying alone? It’s important to be at ease being alone at home, both during daylight and nighttime hours. If you’re nervous about staying home alone, you may not be ready to be alone in someone else’s home and responsible for other children. Some tweens may be okay during the day, but become apprehensive after dark. In this case, begin with daytime babysitting only.
§ How do you relate to younger children? Do you treat children with patience and compassion? Can you take command of situations that require guidance or supervision? Do younger children respond to you positively?
§ Can you handle unexpected or emergency situations? Are you able to stay calm and proceed wisely in a crisis? Preparing a plan of action and learning basic emergency procedures can be helpful in handling unexpected situations that may arise.
§ Are you skilled in the basics of childcare? Do you know how to hold, feed, and change baby’s diapers? Can you soothe a crying child who woke up with a bad dream, misses her parents or has fallen during play? If you feel apprehensive with very young children, maybe sitting with older children would be wise until you gain more experience.
§ Can you handle the business of babysitting? Babysitting is a job that requires interaction with parents as well as children. Be businesslike and explain the days and hours you are available. What you charge per hour. Try to arrange a visit prior to babysitting to meet the children. Make arrangements for transportation to and from the job.
Photo courtesy of Tania Cowling, all rights reserved