10 Tips For Your Babysitters First Day
Leaving your child with a babysitter for the first time is nerve-wracking. Use our babysitter checklist (printable) and our first time babysitting tips for a smooth first day.
Chances are, you’re probably more worried about your babysitter's first day than your child is! So take a page out of their book and remember to relax.
It’s nerve-wracking to leave your child alone with the babysitter for the first time, especially if you don’t often spend time away from your child. You know everything about your child and how to take care of them, so handing the reins over to someone else can be a challenge.
But it doesn’t have to be. By knowing what to expect and being prepared, you can help ensure a smooth first babysitting appointment for yourself, your child and the babysitter. Take a look at our top 10 tips for a successful first babysitting appointment.
1. Know who you’re working with
The most important thing you can do to feel more comfortable leaving your child with a babysitter is to know who you’re working with. Schedule to meet them in-person before the first babysitting appointment to conduct an interview. Having an overall impression of their character, asking for references and certifications, and generally getting to know them better will increase your confidence when the first day comes around.
2. Prepare what they might need
The babysitter won’t yet know what your child’s favorite games, activities, movies or foods are. So for the first babysitting appointment, it can be useful to have these things prepared before they arrive. This way, they’ll have plenty to do together and the babysitter can get a better idea of your child’s routine, what they’re interested in and which activities are appropriate.
3. Provide a list of contact details
Never leave a babysitter without first giving them a list of contact numbers, including emergency contact information. If relevant, you will also need to provide your babysitter with information about necessary medications and/or any allergies your child might have.
4. Use our Babysitter Checklist (printable)
To make life easier, we’ve created a printable babysitter checklist that you can go through with your babysitter. Ensure you run through the entire checklist before you leave.
5. Give the babysitter a tour of your house
Give the babysitter a tour of your house and show them where you keep everything that they might need, such as spare clothes for your child, a first aid kit, a flashlight, snacks, etc.
6. Discuss your child's daily schedule
You can be as in-depth or casual as you like with this one. However, if you prefer that your child stick to their typical routine it can be useful to run through your daily schedule with the babysitter. This way, they can get a better understanding of what’s allowed and not allowed, what time they should eat dinner and go to bed, etc.
7. Discuss the house rules and babysitter's responsibilities
This can be helpful to make sure you and the babysitter are on the same page regarding their duties, as well as what your child is allowed to do and not do. Oftentimes children will stretch the truth regarding how much sugar they’re allowed to eat or the time they normally go to bed, for example.
8. Do a trial run
You can also do a trial run of the babysitter and have them babysit for a few hours while you are there to supervise. This can help make the babysitter and your child more comfortable with each other, and can give you a better idea of the type of babysitter they are!
9. Don’t let your child know you’re stressed
If you’re feeling particularly nervous to leave your child with a babysitter for the first time, make sure you don’t transfer that feeling to your child. Oftentimes, children will pick up on whatever you’re feeling and mirror it. So when you go to say goodbye to your child, give them a hug and a smile, and reassure them that you’ll be back soon.
10. Let your children know about the babysitting appointment
It’s important to let your child know ahead of time about the planned babysitting appointment. It's often overlooked, but kids need time to prepare too! So it can be a good idea to consider introducing the babysitter to your child in advance. On the day of the babysitting appointment, your children will recognize the babysitter, which will help them feel more comfortable. Get the kids excited about having a nanny and emphasize how much fun they will have together!
Best of luck with your first babysitting appointment!