Leaving your child with a new babysitter can be a nerve-wracking experience. Yes, you’re anxious to go out and have some adult conversation, perhaps a date night with your significant other or some much-needed “me” time, but before you can get that far, you’ve got to find someone trustworthy to care for your child. And if you’re not lucky enough to have family or close friends nearby, that will likely mean you’ve got a search ahead of you. Having “been there, done that,” here are 5 conversation starters I brought up when interviewing babysitters:
Background & Experience
How many years have they been working with children and in what capacity?
How old were the children and what ages do they feel comfortable caring for?
Depending on what current parenting hurdles you’re going through at the moment (potty training, tantrums, nap time issues), does the babysitter have specific child care experience in any of those areas?
Can they provide at least 2 families you can call to talk about their experience as a babysitter?
The Sitter’s Situation
Are they in school or employed in a full or part-time capacity?
If you have pets — does the babysitter have any allergies? Are they uncomfortable or scared around any animals in particular?
Do they have a car or a reliable mode of transportation?
Training & Safety
Do they know First Aid & CPR?
Are they familiar with the Heimlich maneuver in the event of choking?
Can they drive in an emergency?
Ask for details on when they faced a crisis on the job. How did they handle it? Alternatively, ask them to share about their proudest moment while babysitting.
What would they do with the kids on a day like today?
What do they do when a child refuses to go to sleep?
What do they think is the best way to handle tantrums?
What are their views on discipline? If it’s different than what you believe, are they willing to change if you ask?
GOOD LUCK! When you find someone amazing, it will all be worth it!