When selecting a babysitter it is important to find out as much as possible about them in order to assess how well they will get along with – and control – your children. Before making a hiring decision, have a brief interview during which you can ask them important questions about their hobbies, experience, and other important factors such as mode of transportation. Here are the top 5 questions to make sure you ask your next potential babysitter.
1.How much experience do you have babysitting children of this age group?
Ideally they should be able to describe babysitting or volunteering experience with children of a similar age to yours. Babysitters who are only familiar with a younger or older age group may find a different age group more challenging to handle and be unsure how to address various issues. An unexperienced babysitter will likely make the experience much less pleasant for everybody involved so it may be a good idea to arrange a “play date” for your babysitter and child to become familiar with each other while you are present.
2.What are your hobbies or interests?
With older children in particular having similar hobbies or interests can be a great boon to a babysitter trying to engage and entertain them. Asking about their interests may also help you assess how comfortable they are with trying new things.
3.Have you ever been in an emergency situation? How did you handle it?
If something does go wrong while you are not home, you will want to be sure that the babysitter is able to handle the situation in a calm, collected manner. Knowledge of first aid and CPR are great and important to have but they don’t mean much if your babysitter falls apart at the first sight of blood.
4.How will you handle temper tantrums, sibling conflicts, or separation anxiety?
An ability to react well to unexpected tantrums and conflicts will be crucial in handling all the little surprises children can come up with in a day. You will want to make sure that your babysitter has a similar approach to tantrums, conflict, and anxiety as you do so as to not confuse your children.
5.What kind of activities would you plan for my children?
Every parent wants to know what great plans their potential babysitter has to keep the children entertained and engaged while you are out, so ask! It is also a great way to see what they can come up with on the spot as they will likely be challenged on their fast thinking skills.