Looking after anyone’s children is a huge responsibility, and one which most babysitters take very seriously. It’s not a skill that everyone has, however, and training classes go a long way towards ensuring a babysitter is well-trained, competent and trustworthy. Whether you’re a parent looking for a babysitter in Sugar Land or you know someone planning to become a sitter, this will help you to understand what safe babysitting entails.
Every babysitter needs to know some essential aspects of childcare. These range from knowing how to change a soiled diaper through the proper methods of feeding babies and young children.
It’s helpful for the sitter to have additional skills such a bathing a toddler, the ability to entertain children with safe games and activities, and an understanding of appropriate subject matter for TV programs and reading.
Depending on the age of the child, the babysitter might also be required to help promote potty training, walking and supervised playtime with other children. She should have some knowledge of preparing food for children, and what foods are unsuitable for your toddler.
Babysitting might sound like the safest job in the world, but sitters are often young people in their teens or single women. Gigs for babysitting in Sugar Land frequently happen at night or over weekends and holidays, and it’s vital to take some safety precautions. These include:
- Avoid leaving your babysitter alone in the house with any adults who might consume alcohol or use drugs.
- Instruct the babysitter to keep all doors and windows locked, and to turn outdoor lights on as required.
- Provide detailed instructions on how to activate the home alarm if necessary.
- Make sure your babysitter has a reliable, safe method of getting home, particularly after dark or during times when there may be drunk drivers on the roads.
- Give the babysitter full directions on the use of all fire safety equipment in the home, and make sure she has several numbers to contact if necessary.
- Provide information for the emergency services and check that the babysitter has access to call if required.
This could include ensuring that an unblocked telephone is available and the batteries are fully charged.
If possible, introduce the babysitter to your nearest reliable neighbors so she is able to get assistance if all other systems are down.
Most babysitters in Sugar Land have to deal with medical matters at some time or other during their line of work, and it’s great for the client’s peace of mind if the sitter has some training. The basics that your babysitter needs to know are:
- Choking Prevention – Every babysitter should know how to react if a child in her care swallows a foreign object or chokes on food.
- Allergic Response – No parent can predict when her child might develop a reaction to a food or other allergen. If your child has known allergies, give the babysitter a detailed list of the triggers and treatments. In the case of children without allergies, make sure the babysitter knows how to recognize common allergic reactions such as hives and breathing difficulties, and when to call for help.
- CPR – No-one ever knows when they are going to need to resuscitate someone, and you’ll have far greater peace of mind if you know your babysitter has had CPR training. She will be able to act in the event that your child stops breathing for any reason whatsoever.
- Poison Control – Households typically have substances that are dangerous to children such as cleaning chemicals or medications. A trained babysitter should know which products to keep out of reach of your child and what emergency steps to take in the case of ingestion or contact.
She should also know the risks associated with putting a child in the crib in the wrong position, and of actions such as shaking a baby.
Finding suitable babysitting training classes in Sugar Land and surrounds isn’t too difficult. Texas Children’s Hospital offers a Safe Sitter training course that includes all the basics as well as behavior management and precautions to prevent injury.
The American Red Cross’s Greater Houston chapter offers a similar course as well as an online course, and the Health Street LLC offers babysitting training with CPR. Various area churches also offer Red Cross-approved courses to their congregations.
Facilities such as the Greater Houston Pool also provide babysitting training classes in Sugar Land, sometimes with specific subject matter such as supervising children in the water. Look for classes that are accredited by an organization such as the Red Cross and which offer certification to attendees.
With a well-trained, certified babysitter in attendance, you will be able to go out and enjoy yourself without continually worrying about how things are going at home.