Babysitting 101 – The Art of Providing Your Services

Every one of us has heard of babysitting have we not?

You may have been asked to babysit yourself!!!

Are you one? I don’t think its all that bad really… One day you might have a child of your own. This is your first shot at children, babies and the like…

Some people forget that we were all babies once. Its part of being a good samaritan to accept the duty of becoming anybody’s household nanny! Just for an evening or so… I know I would have to oblige anyone who came and asked me to babysit! You might just be thirteen as an example but you will learn quickly…

If you are a nanny then babysitting is as easy as pie! Do you remember ever having a babysitter???

Here I write on babysitting 101.

Oblige: to do a favor for
//always ready to oblige a friend

  • Providing care

Sending your child to nursery school is one way of putting your trust in others. Daycare is another name it often goes by. Kindergarten or Kindergarden with a ‘D’… Some of us know of this. For the others you will remember staying at home with mom or grandma until you were sent off, willingly or unwillingly, to primary school! Elementary school I could otherwise say… Grandma can be replaced for anyone responsible enough…

You might have heard of a governess! A posh family hires these! From a large, wealthy household? In that case they were the ones that might tutor you… Can you believe it? Such a being has existed and still exists… We therefore have nannies; the average babysitter; au pairs; or close family to raise our children and in fact good ol’ mom. An au pair sees to it that family can safely rely on her to share reponsibilities in the home. In some countries an au pair can only a female by law!

A nanny is someone that is employed to take care of another child. A nanny can easily become another branch of the family tree! In days gone by, our household nanny had to report to the lady of the house. For some households it was and still is a valuable addition. A key additon I could say! Another is a butler. Lets talk about this some other time, if at all, folks.

  • The au pair

You hate requiring a new babysitter each time you need to go out. The romantic version takes place on your wedding anniversary. The evening is filled with dinner, dessert and even music accompanies your evening meal.

You’re possibly well-off and can afford an expensive babysitter. One that is experienced and stays calm whilst you and your wife are nowhere to be seen!

We could as employers take advantage of someone else however. Someone new to the whole scenario and who might even turn down money as a payment for the evenings work! A simple thank you will do… A good old-fashioned babysitter… Someone you can trust and someone that likes you enough to help you out. If you cannot refuse a request you get to babysit then you are probably the inexperienced kind. You’re now at the mercy of your new employer/s.

They say you can help yourself to some biscuits; some tea; a bowl is in the fridge full of lasagne… Help yourself they repeat as they exit the house! Although this excites you, it can’t really replace the time and effort it takes to raise someone elses child for one whole evening… Your babysitting skills might help you grow up really quickly!

You don’t have enough time for biscuits and tea. On the other hand maybe you do. You tell yourself, man I’ll never do that again. An au pair thinks differently… Waking the children up mornings. Making their beds. Au pairs are involved in a much deeper way! Maintaining the role of an au pair is something you will first need to qualify for.

Mom has never had to babysit. She is expected simply to raise her child. That’s instinct. That’s expectable! A babysitter or au pair is a guest in her home…

If you’re struggling and out of your depth then you’re of course the newer style of babysitter! There are ways to deal with this situation though…

  • Babysitting in 101 steps

You will firstly have to give into the needs of the baby or child you are looking after… You’re the one as a babysitter that has to learn some maternal skills extremely quickly. I don’t know as a female if you can act like the baby’s mother but you should try! Try a little bit of everything…

  1. Changing diapers
  2. Putting them to sleep
  3. Giving them your undivided attention

These are some of the duties you’ll experience within just a few minutes and hours of starting your babysitting chore!

  • Care is needed

You can’t really negotiate with a baby. Your guilt can grow if you ever discipline someone elses toddler or child, so don’t. I mean you really have to hold back! You’re on Big Brother from now on and lasting forever…

Have you imagined ever trying to calm a baby that keeps crying? You’re stuck in a tug of war between a quiet loving little one or a loud desperate infant (two month old to one year old). You’re in a rush to get this baby of the mother you know, calm and happy again. You thought you were going to be successful but now you’re counting down, looking for the hour hand and awaiting baby’s mom to rescue you…

When a baby cries there are some notes you can memorise. Try it, its good for you!

So go ahead:

  • Check the baby’s diaper
  • Play with him or her
  • Try feeding the baby (you may need to try a few times)
  • Try and put baby to bed!

Give yourself a pat on the back or take a biscuit from the kitchen! If you’ve succeeded of course otherwise no you can’t! Come back next time you’re invited and do a better job!!!

Just a joke folks!

You do realise the greater success you achieve at this the more chance you have at being hired again! Good or bad? I don’t know…

You’re the judge…

  • A technique you can use

I hope the baby’s mom had taken some minutes to walk you through the basics! This dilemma I’ll you help you out on starts with the letter ‘A’. Not really… It is surely though one of the most important tasks ahead…

This is a trick your employer should train you in!

How to place baby to sleep… :

  • Go into a dark room
  • Hold him/her gently on either side or on their stomach
  • Hold his/her head in your open hand
  • Start rocking the baby from side to side

Just before or as soon as he or she starts sleeping you can place the baby in a crib or in a bed. Your next step is to take the night shift. You should stay awake and watch over the baby. To start with never let a baby sleep on it’s stomach but rather lay him/her down on their back.

If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help you out.

All the best,

Eric Rubin

12 thoughts on “Babysitting 101 – The Art of Providing Your Services”

  1. Good tips for a new father! Thanks for sharing these babysitting techniques. They are good not only for the person thinking of getting a job as a baby-sitter but also for stay-at-home dads like me. My wife is a professional teacher and as soon as she learned that she can now go back to work, she left our baby to me and since we can’t afford to hire a babysitter, then I got no choice but to do the babysitting myself.

    I’d like to take this opportunity to ask a question…

    Our baby is always crying, something like a long-playing music, which is okay to me except for the thought that he might be suffering of something. Can you suggest of some pointers which will give me a hint if I should let him cry and cry or if it’s now time to bring him to a doctor for health check up?

    1. Gomer, I guess this task can become easier over time. You can pat yourself on the back for accepting such a challenge…

      If you are concerned for your baby’s health then a doctor cannot do your young one any harm! If you wish to see one then no-one should stop you! This is just for in case there is a real problem!

      I do understand what you are saying though! When a baby cries it is not good to leave him/her for longer than is necessary! 

      Some people swear that this is in fact a good technique…

      They say to check up on your baby and if everything is okay then walk out of the room quietly… Leaving them to figure it out on their ownsome… In other words is their crying due to something serious or is it just because they feel too isolated? For instance.

      Does he/she now need simply realise that they are perfectly safe? That there is no need to cry. You must recognise though that babies cry for real reasons! 

      A majority of parents will never succeed at stopping their baby from crying everytime… There are some common causes…

      Your baby could:

      Be hungry
      Be overly tired
      Need a nappy change
      Be surrounded by too much noise or activity
      Be experiencing gas
      Experience fear or anxiety of strangers

      It could in fact be caused by pain or illness.

      As you can see from the list above babies cry for many reasons.

      It may take some time to calm your baby! When it comes to feeding give it a few minutes to expect theircrying to stop…

      Seeing the doctor would be smart if you have experienced the following: a premature birth or a difficult and traumatic birth.

      If there are no real signs then it could simply be gas or hunger. I would first test for hunger! 

      For gas gently massage your baby’s tummy. Pump their legs back and forth as if they are riding a bicycle. So push both legs towards their stomach area until their is relief.

      I hope this stimulated your parenting problem-solving skills Gomer.

      Thanks so much…

  2. This is good advice for those are considering babysitting as a way to make income. I have a daughter that is about to be a teen and I know she will want to make money for various things. I know that babysitting could be a viable option to make money as a starter job and I think someone would need this advice if it were new to them.

    1. Thank you Lee!!!

      We have all heard of a ‘holiday job’. I wish you and your daughter luck in finding her alternative ways of making an income! Boys mow the lawn but finding odd jobs for girls seems almost impossible in such a male-oriented world…

      If I were her then this might be a good option to think about!

      I believe you can trust females more than males at nannying. Do males even do such a thing?

      Thanks again Lee!

  3. Hi Eric,

    Thanks a lot for your informative article on how to babysit. 

    Being a father of 2 I’ve had to babysit countless times. I could never forget I was an infant once and i needed all the care and support when i was that helpless! So I do not struggle helping my boys whenever need arises. 

    I agree also that babysitting for someone else is also not hard. However, as you have said, it needs a lot of caution so as not to discipline their child even if there’s need. One has to wait and report the case instead.

    Thanks a lot for the useful tips (especially the ones to make a baby sleep really quick)

    Boniface from Androidbix 

    1. I hope this article has made your job easier!

      Having drive when it comes to raising your kids is very important. Parents of course need to see that…

      I know your little ones are in good hands!

      Thank you Smile for your comment…

  4. I had a lot of babysitting experience when I was a teen. In fact I actually enjoyed it. I have taken care of toddlers, mostly but there’s one time I had to take care a 15 month old baby. That experience is quite memorable because baby was a lot of gas flatulence. He became a bit cranky then led to a cry fest. I was quite panicky so I phoned my mom and she told me to gently massage  the baby’s tummy. After a while and more farts he calmed down and fell asleep. I didn’t have a lot of bad experience being a nanny. Kids know if they can trust you or not. They have this instinct. Just show them that you’re like a family who will genuinely take care of them and they’ll be good to you. 

    1. I see that you have more personal experience on babysitting than most other people. It isn’t something people could tell from looking at you.

      From reading up on my niche it seems there are many dilemmas involved with babysitting! Things that you can’t handle if you don’t get good advice! Your mom obviously came to your rescue…

      After all that work I suppose you would have a small CV on your hands!!!

      I am glad you succeeded at your few attempts in becoming a nanny!

  5. This is a great guide for everyone who wants to do it! We have a good friend, she is an au pair, since she lives in with the family. But for her it is like a big adventure, since she does this in multiple countries! So she has the travel, and other cultures, combined with the baby sitting. 

    1. Emmanuel, then you have experience on this subject. I’m sure it is a rewarding job working as au pair! I’m not quite sure if it is a career… If so it is an interesting choice to say the least. Perhaps she just found it (working as an au pair) by good luck or pure chance…

      They must indeed have some interesting stories to tell due to so much travel…

      I wish her well and thanks for your informative reply, Emmanuel!!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *