HOME ALONE Everything You Need to Know to Master the Art of Babysitting The door slams. You're alone in the house with their kids — and suddenly you think they might be possessed. Safety — Kids are, like, magnetized to dangerous stuff. Basic Care — Diapering, holding, and dressing babies. "If one of us can't work, we can refer them to another girl on the list.
You're thinking: Maybe crying's not such a bad idea.... Leadership — How to ooze that "I'm in control" 'tude, break up brawls, and make smart decisions. Bug your friends who have siblings or cousins — when she's sick of watching 'em, maybe her parents can pay you to do it. "Lindsey, Britt, Amy, Jennifer, and I put our names and phone numbers on a list and passed it out to families we knew," says Jane, 15.
and his face is turning a fascinating shade of red. You know how to handle this: With a few simple babysitting skills. Check out classes offered by these organizations in your town.... Check with teachers and other staff people at your school. Finally he wore himself out and calmed down, but still wouldn't unlock the door. Chris was sitting quietly, playing, as if nothing had happened.
" First, if you've never watched young kids — no little brothers, sisters, or cousins in your family — consider taking a babysitting course. (Have 'em write it down.) Family name Children's names and ages Time parents will return Phone number where they can be reached Address where you are Nearest cross streets Phone number Name and phone number of two neighbors Name and phone number of family doctor Name and phone number of hospital Phone number for Poison Control Additional instructions And one more thing... It's that "stuff to do" list you made yourself, to make sure you wouldn't space on anything the parents asked you to do. The littlest girl was digging holes in the backyard with a shovel. Since then, I charge more for babysitting all girls." —Saundra, 15 "After his grandmom left, the kid I was babysitting ran into the basement and locked the door.
You'll learn what to watch out for, and also how to pick safe stuff to do. Professional Stuff — Who's cool (and uncool) to sit for safety-wise, how to find a gig. I think if a situation comes up, I'll know what to do and I'll be calm. It works out great." Hey — that is pretty brilliant, but don't pass flyers out all over town or hang them up in public areas.
Bethany, 11, learned about babysitting in Girl Scouts. Give them to people you or your parents know, and don't put your picture or your address on them. " You don't want to work too much and not have time for your homework, chores, or a social life. The best thing to do is agree on a rate before you take the job — you'll probably get somewhere around $3 to $6 an hour.
Says 14-year-old Rayna, "I wouldn't do it more than twice a week. Ask around your neighborhood to see what other sitters charge.
Usually I sit once during the week — but only until 10 p.m.! If you do it too much, even though the money is great, you'll burn out." "Oh, yeah. Your rate should depend on the number and ages of the kids — if there are lots of kids who will require a lot of attention, you should expect to be paid more.