10 Good House Rules for Sitters

Posted on by admin | in Babysitting Jobs

As a babysitter you have to adapt to rules that may be quite different from the house of one family to the next. There are some house rules that go with the job of babysitter, however, that are virtually universal. Here are 10 good house rules for sitters to observe, in nearly all cases.

  1. Guests. Unless it has been approved ahead of time by the parents you are working for, you should have no visitors while on the job. You don’t need the distraction, or the hassle of having a visitor do something that you will have to explain when the parents come home.
  2. Mobile Phone. While you are babysitting, your mobile phone should be for emergency use only. Phone conversations or text exchanges are another distraction that you don’t need when you are working as a babysitter.
  3. Food. Unless it has been discussed and accounted for beforehand, bring no food with you on a babysitting job. Any meals, snacks, or treat rewards for the kids should be preapproved and come from the family refrigerator or pantry.
  4. Privacy. To be blunt; no snooping is allowed. Curiosity is normal, but is not an itch that should be scratched, in this case. If a door is closed and there are no babysitting-related reasons to open it, leave it as is.
  5. Language. Adding new vulgarities or colorful words to the kids’ vocabularies is not part of your job description. Even if you know that the parents use language that would get them frowned at in church, your best practice is to keep it clean.
  6. Violent Activities. As a babysitter, you should never instigate or encourage violent or potentially dangerous games for the kids. This includes, but is not limited to, activities such as pillow fights, physical strength contests, and anything involving one or more persons throwing anything at one or more other persons.
  7. Fear. Avoid telling or reading scary stories to the kids with whom you are sitting. Stop and think about whether a story that you tell might cause them to have trouble falling or staying asleep. Even if you aren’t babysitting through bedtime, parents are not likely to offer a second sitting job to someone that leaves the kids too terrorized to sleep at night.
  8. Movies and Television. Make sure that any movies or television programs that you watch with the kids are age-appropriate. As with the language and fear issues mentioned above, you don’t want to be responsible for exposing the kids to programming that their parents find objectionable. If you are not sure what is acceptable to the parents, ask ahead of time.
  9. Games. Leave your personal favorite video and computer games at home. They are another distraction that you don’t need while on the job.
  10. Liquor, Tobacco, Drugs. Absolutely not. Period. Not anywhere if you are a minor, but especially not when you are caring for children, regardless of age. Don’t even think about it.

Consider these rules as part of your babysitting code of awareness and activities. If you follow them always and attach them to the beginning of any other list of rules in any given house, you will avoid many potential problems in your babysitting work.

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