WHAT RESEARCH SAYS ABOUT YOUR BABYSITTER
I remember the first babysitting “gig” I got. It was too sweet of a deal for 13-year-old me. It was once a week in the summer and paid better than my part-time job throughout college. My mom’s connections had something to do with it. Though I did work hard. The kids were 5, 3, and 1. Three kids. Eight hours. One “barely-teen” in charge. I must say I was really responsible for my age, but looking back at my naivety, I realize I was just hoping for the best. A couple close calls that summer, but no tragedies.
WHAT WAS I GOING TO DO IF SOMETHING WENT WRONG?
Well, research is interesting to me because it serves as a gauge for how something is working. There’s one research article that got an “I KNEW IT” reaction out of me. The gist of the study from Penn State Hershey Medical Center was that there was no real difference in the response to emergencies between babysitters that were trained and those untrained! The study concluded that babysitting training programs need to be modified and improved. YIKES!
WHY AM I NOT SURPRISED?
A lot of important things in life are just too complicated. There is a bunch of information thrown at a babysitter which clouds their mind’s ability to prioritize the most important things. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if the sitter has not gone through any training, they might not know where to start if there is an emergency.
WHAT DO WE DO?
Simplicity is genius. We need to keep things VERY simple. In my opinion, the number one goal for a babysitter should be safety. Everything else will take it’s proper place. But what happens when things go wrong? We need a game plan. It needs to be very concrete. Your babysitter should have some basic information to work with. I have a one page hand-off form for you as a free download, but here are the three main categories for starters:
1. Information about you/expected time away
2. Information about the children
3. Verbalize when the sitter needs to call you vs. 911 (research shows it’s not common sense!)
FREE TOOL FOR YOU!
I have a one page hand-off form that you can print and use EVERY time a sitter comes over. I kept the colors to a bare minimum so you can print it easily. This is adapted from the Babysitting course I developed, “The Boutique Babysitter.” More on that later…For now, enjoy this quick & simple tool…just click below:)
If you’ve already signed up to receive my eBook: Super Simple CPR, this babysitting safety tool will also be coming straight to your inbox.
SHARE YOUR IDEAS…
Let’s learn from each other! What steps do you take with your babysitter to ensure safety? Share in the comments below.
Photo Credit: Jen Kroll Photography