3 top questions to ask your babysitter

Deciding whether a babysitter is right for your special family situation is up to you. Many families decide to interview their sitter before choosing. Here are some basic questions we recommend asking, to get the conversation started.

Finding the best babysitter for your family is a big job. It’s almost like dating: you need to find someone who fits with your lifestyle, schedule, and location. And you have to get along with them too!

Jaleesa vets babysitter applicants from all over Lebanon in our four-step security and vetting process. This includes a criminal record check by Lebanon’s ISF, two reference checks, a phone interview, and a final in-person training in professional skills and basic child development. (Click here to find babysitters in your neighborhood.)

Here are the top questions to ask to get to know your sitter better.

With which ages do you have experience?

The perfect babysitter for your family will have experience with children the same ages as yours. Obviously, someone used to taking eight-year-olds to their after school activities might not have the skills required to look after an infant. Similarly, someone used to soothing newborns won’t have the energy needed for a rambunctious two-year-old. Make sure your sitter has the type of experience your family needs.

Follow up questions:

  • What are your favorite activities to do with kids the same age as my child?
  • What is your favorite age group to work with and why?
  • For newborns: How do you put a baby to sleep? How would you prepare a bottle? How would you change a diaper? How do you prevent choking?

What emergency skills do you have?

Jaleesa provides opt-in First Aid & CPR certification courses delivered by the Lebanese Red Cross. One of our babysitters even saved a life with the skills she learned at one of our trainings! Ask if your babysitter has a current First Aid & CPR certification.

Follow up questions:

  • How have you handled emergencies in the past? (Make sure to ask for specific examples.)
  • How would you childproof this room? Do you see anything that could be a problem?

What would you do if my child breaks a rule?

Handling kids well when they’ve misbehaved is arguably more important than bringing fun activities to a session. No child is perfect, and you want to feel confident that a babysitter will be your ally when it comes to making sure your rules are followed. The most important thing here is communicating the rules of your house, and what you expect the sitter to do in various situations– even if she personally would approach the situation another way.

Follow up questions:

  • How have you enforced house rules in the past, like no screentime or no sugar?
  • How can you tell if a child needs a hug or a stern warning?

After you narrow down your list based on the first in-person interview, you’ll want to introduce the babysitters to your children as well, to be sure everyone gets along. We’ll post some tips for the first meeting with the children in an upcoming blog!

In the meantime, what other questions do you think are necessary, or good to know? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Source: jaleesa blog

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