Every parent is bound to worry about their child and yes, some worry much more than others. It is pretty much a given, however, that when a parent is looking for a babysitter it can be quite a stressful and worry-some time. Finding a babysitter may really seem like finding a needle in a haystack, especially if you are looking for someone outside of your family or someone that you do not know yet. However, it is possible for a parent to feel better with certain babysitters over others as long as they do their research first and do some things before having someone new watching their children.
Start with this babysitting checklist to get you started:
Do Your Research
- Ask around – the best way to find a good, reliable, trustworthy babysitter is to ask other parents who they recommend. Failing that…
- If you have the money, pay for a site to look for a babysitter (these sites often do background checks on their sitters).
- Do your own background check on the sitter (this could even be a quick google search putting the babysitters name in quotes, like “Kim Harkola”).
- Check for a Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest, MySpace, etc. page as this can give you a massive insight about a potential babysitter.
- When you do find a potential babysitter, you’ll want to ‘interview’ them in person or over the phone. Create a questionnaire of things that are important to you or find questions to ask online. Examples include, ‘how much experience do you have?’ and ‘do you have any basic first aid knowledge,’ and ‘Can you give me the phone number to some other parents that you already babysit for so I can get a reference?’
- If a babysitter does not meet your qualifications or you have a bad gut feeling do not hire them!
Do a Trial Run
- Give your new babysitter a few times to watch your children while you or another adult you trust is in the home.
- If the babysitter passes this initial test, do another trial run when you are out but just for an hour or two.
- Once your confidence in the babysitter is solid, you can then extend the time you leave your child or children.
- If you are still worried have them call you so that you can talk to your children every so often while you are gone.
After Hiring the Babysitter
- Make sure that you always leave a list taped up in your home of all your numbers, neighbors/close friends or family and emergency contact numbers.
- Keep checking with your children to assess their behaviors and their thoughts on the babysitter as well.
What else can we add to this babysitting checklist? Please leave your thoughts in the comments below!