When I was a young girl of babysitting age, there were two important things my mom helped me do:
1) Sign up for Babysitter Training through the Red Cross and
2) she helped me create a "Babysitting bag" full of craft supplies, and other goodies that I could take to each household!
I know that 'tis the season of craziness and the last thing most parents need right now is something NEW to do, however this Saturday December 19 at the American Red Cross of Washtenaw County (4624 Packard Road, Ann Arbor 48108) kids ages 11 and older can take the American Red Cross Babysitter Training.
This fun and exciting course, for ages 11 years and older, teaches budding entrepreneurs (aka excited babysitters) the importance of their unique job responsibilities in caring for someone else's children. Participants will learn how to act in an emergency, how to prevent accidents while babysitting, how to play with children of all ages, how to feed babies, and much, MUCH more.
The course runs for 6 hours and costs $50. Parents will also need to pack a lunch for their child. For more information visit the American Red Cross of Washtenaw County website or call the communications director at (734) 971-5300.
As for creating a babysitting "bag”, mom helped my Girl Scout troupe paint over-the-shoulder canvas bags. We then stuffed them with a binder that included family forms that we created to keep track of each family, kid’s names, parent’s information, what we charged them per hour, the kid’s preferences and any dates we would have in watching the kids. The binder also included information for emergency services - Although this is now mostly done through 911. Other items in our babysitting bag included coloring books and crayons, scissors and glue, construction paper and some simple craft projects for the kids. It was a way I could entertain the children of the families I sat for in a "new" way, and was often better received than what they already have at home!
Items that could be included in a babysitting bag:
- Favorite books
- Games Inexpensive craft
- Appointment book or calendar
- A flashlight
- An inexpensive table cloth for crafting
- Wet wipes
So get creative and help your child create their babysitting bag. What did you put into the bag for them? Did it work? How did babysitting training help them? Also, please let me know other thoughts on how you helped your child succeed as a budding babysitter! Who knows maybe I'll even have to contact you to hire your child, it will be MANY years before I am ready to train my children to watch someone else's child...