If you’re an experienced babysitter, then you probably instinctively know how to connect with kids. But if you’re new to babysitting, don’t panic. Here are a few tips that will help make the job a whole lot easier:
- Be Confident: If you act shy and nervous, the children you’re watching will be shy and nervous too. Even if you aren’t completely nerve-free going into a new babysitting job, smile, make eye contact, and act sure of yourself so the children you’re babysitting will feel at ease.
- Get down on their level: When you’re talking to small children, drop to your knees so that you can look them in the eye. They will feel like you’re paying attention to them, and they’ll be more likely to pay attention to you.
- Ask Questions: Asking questions is a great way to learn more about the children you’re watching. Ask them their favorite book, television show, movie, or YouTube channel. Ask them what games they like to play. Chances are, they’ll want to show you their favorites!
- Know the Ages and Stages: Take a babysitting class so that you understand the ages and stages of child development. A preschooler has different needs than a toddler, and each age and stage comes with its own behavior challenges. Knowing that infants cry to communicate, and toddlers are too young to understand or follow rules helps you to know what to expect and how to handle it. (Check out our behavior management tips.)
- Play with them: Let the children you’re watching choose the activities, and then tap into your inner child and have fun with them! The children will enjoy their time with you much more if you’re coloring with crayons or playing dolls right along with them.
Connecting with younger children isn’t as hard as it may seem. It starts with acting confident, showing an interest in what’s important to them, and having fun. If you’d like to learn more about the skills it takes to be a better, safer babysitter,