Be Prepared: Tips for Prepping for a Job
Babysitting is a lot of fun, but it's more than just showing up at a family's home and watching their kid play. Especially if a parent has requested something extra - like language lessons or meal prep - you need to have a plan, even if it's as simple as a list of activity ideas. You shouldn't go to a babysitting job expecting that the parents, or the kids, will tell you what to do; that's your job!
Simple Meal Ideas
Everyone's cooking skill level (and kitchen appliances!) will differ. But if you're asked to prepare a meal for the children you're watching, you have more options than a jelly sandwich and some crackers. We've found a few easy meal ideas that kids will love. Plus, letting the kids help also counts as a fun activity! Ask ahead about any allergies and ingredient availability.
...and check out this article from Savvy Tokyo on kid-friendly, healthy Japansese treats.
Language Teaching Tips
Many of CareFinder's families use our platform because they want extra language support for their kids, in addition to a qualified babysitter. While they may not expect you to come with a lesson plan, if a parent hires you in part because of your language abilities, you should be prepared with some teaching activities. Each of these should be done in the language they are learning!
Descriptive drawing. Give each child a picture, placing it face down so they cannot see each other’s cards. They must describe the picture for the other person to draw.
Two Truths, One Lie. Each child should write three statements about themselves on a piece of paper. Two of them should be true, and one should be a lie. Have them read their three statements, and you (and any other children) question them to try to determine which statement is a lie.
Read. Find an age-appropriate children's book and read it out loud (complete with voices and sound effects!). If they're of reading age, ask them to take turns reading to you.
Scavenger Hunt. Either around the house or, with permission from parents, around the neighborhood, develop a scavenger hunt. Each item should be listed in the foreign language and the first child to find them all, wins a treat.
Fun Activities For All Ages
A simple Google search turns up countless lists outlining fun, free and easy things to do with children of all ages while you're babysitting. Take a look at some that we've found here and keep them in mind for your babysitting jobs!