Solutions For Parents


Is Your Child Ready to Become a Babysitter?

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                                              Is Your Child Ready to Become a Babysitter?


Babysitting involves lots of responsibility, activities and rules. For the parent of a babysitter, it is your job

to see that your child is responsible enough and can handle different types of situations when babysitting 

young children.


There are many babysitting classes available at your local YMCA and Red Cross as well as through

some city programs. 


For what age group is your teen comfortable “sitting”.  Can they take care of newborns or toddlers or are

they strictly for preschool and middle school age children.  Start teens with just an hour or two and work

from there. They must start with babysitting their siblings and reporting back to parents in a “grown-up” way.  

Be sure to leave a phone number where you can be reached and a neighbor who might be available if an

emergency happens.  Make a list of emergency phone numbers and have them close at hand.  (It might

be helpful to create a blank form for your child to take with him/her on babysitting jobs with all the

appropriate names of numbers she needs to write down).


Here are some questions your child should be asking prospective babysitting parents:

 How many children do they have?

 What are their ages?

 Do they have any pets?

 What are the bedtime rules for each child being babysat?

 What are the TV and/or media rules?

 Are there any food allergies (what to do if so)?

 Do I need to give the children a bath?

 What time will you be home?

 Are the children allowed to have friends over?

 What kinds of things do you expect of me while your gone? (Cleaning?)

 How will I get home?


As your child goes to his first few babysitting jobs you, the parents, should make sure you are available

if your teen gets scared or has any questions.  This will make the transition easier for both you and your



Remember babysitting can be a lucrative business for young teens.  This is a great opportunity for

learning about money as well. Teach your kids to put a portion of their earnings away.

Ask Dr. Susan