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First Time Babysitting: What You Should Know

You’ve just landed your first babysitting job, and you feel both excited and intimidated. Babysitting for the first time can be nerve-racking for many. And while you might be anxious about your first babysitting job, the parents will feel equally nervous. Putting their child in the hands of a stranger is a big step and should be treated with proper preparation on your part.

Whether you’re choosing to babysit as your main profession, semester break job or a part-time job, you should always strive to do your best.

Here are 8 tips to prepare yourself for your first babysitting job.

Be punctual

Remember, giving a good first impression is important so make sure you arrive on time. However, we do suggest that you arrive 15-30 minutes ahead of your schedule so that you have time to settle in, talk to the parents and let the child warm up to you.

Know basic First Aid and CPR

As a babysitter, it goes without saying that it is your responsibility to ensure the child’s safety and wellbeing. Thus, knowing how to administer first aid and CPR is important not only to attend to the child when the need arises, but also to help you stay calm and focused throughout the process.

Know your tasks and the parents’ expectations

Knowing what your tasks are as a babysitter is very important, so that you lay down boundaries and be clear as to what you will do and what you will not do to manage the parents’ expectations. Your primary responsibility is to care for the child and their needs. This may include heating up their food or milk, washing the milk bottles, and light chores like tidying up the play area.

Ask them about house rules and the child’s routine
(feed time, nap time, or bath time)

As a first-time babysitter, you will come to discover that different families have different rules, instructions and different children have different routines. So, when making arrangements with the parents, make sure you ask about house rules and the child’s routines – it is better to ask too many questions rather than too few.

Plan age-appropriate activities

When babysitting, you are also expected to do enriching activities with the child. Find out as much as you can about the child prior to coming for your job so that you will have ample time to plan for fun activities for you and the child. If you are babysitting a baby, you can play peek-a-boo, sing songs or sensory play. For toddler and older kids, you can prepare for a scavenger hunt, hide and seek or arts and crafts. Whatever activities you have got planned, be sure to check with the parents if they agree with them or if they have any preferred activities they would like you to do with their child.

Get the parents’ contact or other emergency contact

Before the parents leave, don’t forget to ask for the parents’ contact details or another trusted adult’s contact details. This will become come in handy should you have any questions or if a situation requires urgent attention. In case of an emergency, make sure to call the emergency hotline and inform the parents after.

Always keep an eye on the child

When you’re babysitting a child, you have to always keep an eye on them and make sure they are within your eyesight. Do not watch the TV and set your phone aside as these can easily distract you from doing your job. If the child is sleeping, always make sure that they are within your reach and you are nearby should they need you.

Keep the parents updated at all times

Parents will generally appreciate when you keep them up to date with how things are going with their child. So, give short updates like when their child is having their meal, napping, or playing games. Send pictures of what their child is doing, this will help reassure the parents and give them peace of mind.

When you’re just starting off as a babysitter, you can be totally unaware of the things you you don’t know yet, which is completely understandable. Some you can learn and prepare yourself for, but some will just come with experience. Being a babysitter does not come with its own challenges and responsibilities, but once you know the ins and outs of the job, it might just be the most rewarding experience for you!

Want to start your first babysitting job with Kiddocare?

Download Kiddocare App and register today! Available on Apple App Store and Google Play Store.