Top 8 Essential Life Skills Babysitter Learn
Why did you choose to become a babysitter? Is it for the love you have for children, for the extra cash for your savings, or were you looking for activities to make you productive? While these are strong motivators to choose to babysit as a part-time or full-time work, there other reasons that will help you decide to become a babysitter.
Your babysitting responsibilities and experiences teach you life skills that help you become independent and self-reliant. These life skills will help you face the requirement and challenges of further studies, another career, and adult life.
Valuable Life Skills You Gain as Babysitter
1. Safety Skills
Kids love physical activities, and they are prone to run into minor injuries like bumps, cuts, and scrapes. As a babysitter, you learn how to soothe the child and what type of first aid to apply. You also become ready in case a major incident takes place.
Apart from being actively involved as soon as an emergency happens, you also become more vigilant. You learn to assess and recognize hazardous objects like sharp corners, medicines left on the table, and accessible cleaning solutions. You learn how to take preventive actions to help reduce risks of someone getting hurt inside the house.
2. Domestic Skills
- Childcare knowledge and skills
Both are vital in babysitting. While babysitting, you get to see the child's development stages first hand. You learn to tailor your babysitting style based on the age of the child, attitude, and development progress. For babies, you learn about feeding schedules, burping , changing diapers, sleeping-training methods and sensory play. For toddlers, you learn to feed them with solid food, do fun age-appropriate activities with them, and clean up after them.
- Food Preparation and Cooking
Some parents may ask you to prepare a quick sandwich or cook up a simple dinner. Through this, you learn and practice food safety and hygiene. You can identify foods that are choking hazards for young children, and you know the need to slice it into small pieces. You also learn a variety of simple recipes that you can also prepare and cook at home.
- House cleaning
Food splatter on the table, water spills on the floor, books out of the bookshelves, and toys on the rug, these are common if you are caring for young kids. You develop your cleaning technique and system, allowing you to be more efficient in maintaining the cleanliness of the house.
Emergencies may arise while you are babysitting. It is easy to be in shock or panic in times of accidents but by knowing safety skills and resilience you are able to stay calm and think clearly. You also learn to move on from negative experience and use that to be stronger and wiser.
4. Leadership and Critical Thinking
Kids look up to you for guidance and security. As the adult, they need you to keep things in order by following the child's routine, keeping the home clean, and resolving conflict as required.
Although there is a routine, being with kids is a different experience every day. Their energy, spontaneity, and curiosity often leads them into awkward or challenging situations. Your ability to analyze the situation and resolve the problem is a result of practicing critical thinking.
5. Organizing and Time Management
Being the only adult at home means you run the household by yourself. With the list of things that needs to get done like food preparation, light housekeeping, childcare, a babysitter can get easily overwhelmed. As a babysitter, you learn how to organize and structure your day to ensure that you tick off all the items on the list.
6. Patience and Empathy
Imagine a toddler crying and screaming on top of his lungs while throwing all the things he can get his hands on. How would you respond?
Your babysitting experiences have taught you to stay composed and not lose your temper. You learn to set aside your reactions and judgement. You know how to look at the situation from the child's point of view and identify what caused those strong emotions. When you have the grasp of what is happening, you talk to the child to validate their feelings and let them know that you understand.
Your ability to relate to the feelings of the child is crucial in making a connection with him/her. It helps the child know that he is not alone and that he/she can open up to you about his thoughts and feelings.
Through experience, you learn what triggers or upsets the child and find ways how to avoid it.
7. Communication Skills
As a babysitter, you talk with parents and children a lot. You understand that you cannot speak to a toddler and an adult in the same manner.
You are aware to use simple words and short sentences when talking to a toddler. You learn how to speak softly when calming down a child or talk firm when disciplining a child while maintaining eye contact. You understand the value of actively listening to him/her when it is his/her turn to speak.
You practice your negotiation and persuasion skills as you convince the child to eat his vegetables or sleep at his/her bedtime.
Conflict resolution becomes natural to you as you try to resolve fights among the children you take care of.
8. Creative Thinking and Resourcefulness
Every child has a different personality and preferences, and you learn to adapt.
When a child hates to eat vegetables, you learn to come up with creative ideas for the child to eat it, so you learn to cut flower-shaped carrots or decorate the plate with a happy face.
At playtime, you can also apply creativity by creating new games, singing silly songs, making artworks,and play pretend. There are endless possibilities to engage and entertain the kids as you learn to think out of the box and utilize the available materials around you.
Check out the list of fun and engaging activities here.
We hope this list makes you feel the value and life learnings you get from your babysitting job and inspires you to work with greater enthusiasm.
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