What are the 6 best ways to ensure you set your new babysitter up for success?
- Communicate– Tell your child there will be someone new to care for them, that they will be safe. Tell them the name of their babysitter. There are books available to read to your children, prior to the babysit, regarding how to engage with a new babysitter. Older children may not like the term babysitter, feel free to use a ‘cooler’ name such as ‘uni girl to hang out with’.
- How long should I allow before I leave?– Some handover time needs to be allowed between the time you have the babysitter booked and the time you need to walk out the door.
- If it is the first time you have had this babysitter allow around 15 minutes for a tour of the house, advising the rules, explain bedtimes and routines.
- Allow enough time for the children to warm to the babysitter while you are present. A nervous child may take longer.
- If a child is upset, they sometimes settle better if you are not in sight, so you may need to say goodbye and trust the babysitter to distract and settle your child. Do not worry, they will not let them cry for long (see below under if they wake or unsettled).
- If it is a familiar babysitter, the handover time may only need to be 5 – 10 minutes.
- Do not put your child to sleep beforehand– If at all possible, It is usually best for the child to meet the babysitter before they go to bed just in case they wake before you get home
- Keep to your child’s routine– They will adapt easier to the new face if there is consistency in the routines and practices. Advise your babysitter of the routines so they can follow them. If you are happy for changes such as a special dinner or later to bed that is fine, but it needs to be discussed in front of the children and babysitter. A bedtime deadline must be set as some children think, ‘whenever’ means never.
- If your child wakes or is unsettled– Give your babysitter instructions in case your baby, toddler or child wakes up. Some parents like the babysitter to pat or rock the child, others prefer a bottle to be fed (if applicable), some like firmness, others a cuddle. Our babysitters prefer to know how the parents would like them to handle this situation. Cherished Cherubs have a policy that if a child does not settle after a period of time, they will contact the parents who then have the opportunity to speak with the child for reassurance, offer suggestions to the babysitter, or to return home, as no-one wants an inconsolable child.
- Keeping in touch– We want you to enjoy your time out and understand that parents are often quite nervous about leaving their children. Please know, that you can phone or text once or twice or even three times during the outing to ask your babysitter how the children are going. You will soon be relishing your ability to have some time out, knowing your children are in good safe hands.
To help put your mind at ease, Cherished Cherubs Babysitting have a team of reliable and responsible babysitters that are trained in the above best practices for you and your children.
Make time for yourself and book one of our babysitters, phone 0417 927 525 or visit cherishedcherubs.com.au to book online