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How to be a Great Babysitter or Nanny

Updated on September 14, 2012
Put smiles on kids and parents faces with these simple tips!
Put smiles on kids and parents faces with these simple tips! | Source

Fabulous! You got a job as a babysitter and/or nanny. Obviously the family have trusted you enough to hire you, but how do you make sure to show them you're trustworthy and a carer that they will want to rely on for years to come.

Here are some simple nannying and babysitting tips that will have families thinking you're Mary Poppins in no time!

Confirm the Time

The day before you are due to start nannying or do a casual babysitting job, send an SMS, email or call to confirm the time and address and also to reassure the family that you will be there.

Dress Appropriately

For a nanny, neat and casual clothing is required as you are working with children. Don't dress in your stilettos and fancy outfit but also don't come in your pajamas! Find the balance between overdressed and under-dressed and be mindful of any activities you might be doing.

Arrive Early

It's always better to be early than late. This will show the parents that you are responsible and gives you a few extra minutes to go over things with them such as rules, schedules, meals etc.

Interact with the Child

Play and talk with them at their level so they feel more comfortable with you and aren't intimidated by your size. Ask them to show you their favorite toys and don't be afraid to play and have fun

Leave the House as Tidy as You Found It - Or Tidier!

You wouldn't want to come home to a mess, would you? Neither will the parents! clean up any messes you or the children have made and pick up toys or crafts left lying around - the little touches make all the difference.

Check on Sleeping Children

If babysitting or nannying at night, be sure to check on the children once or twice to make sure they are sleeping soundly. This is especially important with babies and toddlers.

Communicate With The Parents

Write brief notes of what happened during the day so that the parents have an idea of what went on. Some parents might not want this, but others may just like to be reassured verbally or through notes that their child stuck to their schedule and behaved well.

Respect The Family's Privacy

Don't share photographs of the kids with your friends, don't enter the parents bedroom or other areas of the home without previous permission.

Take an Interest in the Child

Get to know the child's favorite toys, music, tv shows etc. learn about them so you have something to talk to them about or play with them.

Keep to the Family's Routine

Don't break the families routine and make it harder for them when you're not there. Stick to appropriate bed times, meal times and whatever else the family may set to ensure you are not breaking their good habits.

Written from first hand experience by Kristy, who has had experience as both a Nanny and Babysitter
Written from first hand experience by Kristy, who has had experience as both a Nanny and Babysitter | Source

Stick to the Family's Rules

If the family don't allow their kids to eat certain foods or eat in between their set meals and snacks me sure you stick to the same rules.

The same goes with activities or games they aren't allowed to play or areas of the home they're not allowed in. The last thing a parent wants to hear is "but so-and-so lets me do...."

Don't Invite Friends or Chat on the Phone or Web

You're there to do a job - treat it as one. Your focus should be on the children and families at all times, not on your social life.


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    • profile image

      Daniela 3 years ago

      Great post! Very simple yet necessary!

    • Thundermama profile image

      Catherine Taylor 4 years ago from Canada

      This is a great hub with wonderful tips. I will be passing it along to my 13 year old daughter before she heads out to babysit.