Whether its family, friends, or strangers, being a first time babysitter and can extremely nerve racking. That being said, it doesn’t have to be! Along with the proper preparation and confidence, here are ways that can help make your first babysitting gig a success!
1. Bring games/toys
Make sure you come prepared to have fun! If possible, talk to the parents ahead of time about what the little ones enjoy doing. Keeping busy will make the night go smoother and be more fun for everyone.
2. Be aware of allergies/conditions
This is really important! The last thing you want to do is make dinner with an ingredient that someone is allergic to. Make sure to get any medical information before the parents leave.
3. Be aware of your surroundings
Lock the doors, and pay attention to anything that may be happening around the house. Also, be aware of potential dangers inside the house, and make sure the children are aware and not interacting with them.
4. Be respectful
Ultimately, a good impression and a clean, tidy house will leave parents happy and more likely to call you next time on their night out. Be polite, don’t overstep your boundaries, and act like you would if they were there with you!
As a health and child care company, we’re strong advocates that everyone who is physically capable to provide first aid and CPR should be trained in it. Why? Because that’s how you save lives.
In our information society, no one is ever going to argue with you that education is a bad idea, yet many people are reluctant to be educated in first aid. They see it as a responsibility, which to an extent it is. More troubling however, is that they often don’t feel like they will ever need to use First Aid or CPR training.
To prove that first aid training is helpful in your everyday life, here are 10 scenarios which might occur at home, at work or on the go where being First Aid certified would be incredibly helpful:
1) Your daughter is helping you to make her favourite tonight; pasta. She insists that she’ll be okay draining off the excess water but when she picks up the pot from the stove the handle falls off. Her legs are being burnt and her clothing has soaked up much of the boiling water. Now what?
2) You’re passing by the storage room at work when you hear a banging noise. Out of curiosity you open the door and find someone who has clearly fallen to the floor. Now what?
3) While at your sons’ soccer game his friend falls hard onto his shoulder, you hear a loud pop. An ambulance is called but you’re told that because of other more life threatening emergencies they could take up to a half hour to arrive. Now what?
4) A couple is enjoying lunch in the secluded section of the park you run through every day. The woman calls out for help saying her husband is choking. Now what?
5) During a storm you lose control of your car and end up in the ditch. You have no cell service and the car won’t start. Now what?
6) You’re making dinner for a friend and get distracted while talking. You cut your finger and there is a considerable amount of blood. Now what?
7) Your child’s grandfather is outside playing with them when your child comes running in saying that grandpa’s face “looks funny.” Now what?
8) A friend injures herself badly and needs help around the house for a few weeks, while you’re there she asks for your help in keeping the wound clean and changing the dressings. Now what?
9) Your co-worker trips running up the stairs and hits their chin hard. They seem fine, but now what?
10) A customer brings in cookies for your staff as a thank-you for something you did for them, she tells you they’re peanut free, but by mistake they aren’t. One of your staff who is allergic eats one. Now what?
First Aid situations like these are a part of everyday life. People get minor cuts and scrapes, choke, burn themselves, and suffer from a variety of medical problems such as heart attack, stroke, and allergic reactions. First Aid gives you the ability to make sure they are as comfortable as possible and still alive when they reach medical professionals.
Knowing that you can keep your family safe and answer every “Now what?” on that list should be incentive enough to take a course. If not, give us a call and we can provide you with more reasons and competitive rates for First Aid, CPR and AED certification.
It’s a reality for most parents that their school aged children will spend some time alone (or with an older child) before they get home. Many of them will walk home from their schools, after-school programs or friends houses without you. Here are some tips for keeping them safe when you can’t be there.
1) Designate “safe places”
Some communities already have these in place for you. They’re often local businesses or houses that have been screened by the local police department. Their purpose being that if a child (or anyone) is uncomfortable, feels like they’re being followed or encounters any dangerous situation there is somewhere they can go where an adult will help.
On a smaller scale, you can set these places up on your own. Family and friends houses or businesses. You can always go the extra step and work to set up a network similar to the one listed above by gathering information about who may be interested in the community and then having them screened by your local police department. Your child’s school may be able to help you to do this.
2) Make sure they know the code
Stranger danger has been drilled into our children’s heads, but even if the person is an acquaintance your child shouldn’t be going somewhere with them. To ensure they don’t, set up a code word that a friend or relative will know if plans have changed and they will be picking your child up and so on.
3) If your child will be spending time at home alone…
Make sure they know the emergency numbers and you have them posted in a spot where they won’t be easily misplaced. If it’s possible, try to find an older child or a childcare giver who can take care of them during your absence. They are safest when they aren’t alone.
It’s back to school time and we all know what that means: grumpy kids. No more sleeping in, a more consistent bed time and a lot less time outside (or in front of the TV). So how can you counter the back to school blues?
A great way is to keep some of their favourite activities throughout the fall season. Do they absolutely adore going to the park with you? Great, take them on the weekend. Did you go camping all the time and they loved it? Try getting away for a weekend as it gets slightly colder, it just means more campfire fun!
Another way to counter the back to school blues is by making things like homework fun. Try and tie in activities, games, or characters and toys that they enjoy with the work. In doing this you will make the process more enjoyable for both yourself and your child.
It’s important to remember that the best way to have a happy child is also to have a healthy child. If you keep them active throughout all the seasons, you’ll have one! Healthy, active children also sleep easier, are better rested, and enjoy school and learning a bit more.
Every child you’ve ever met has their own unique set of needs; why treat children with mental or cognitive disabilities any differently than you do any other child?
When interacting with such a child, we really recommend one core idea: treat them as you would any other child. You hated being singled out for being different as a child (many of us as adults still find ourselves tortured by how the rest of society views us), why perpetrate that view onto the next generation?
So how can you provide the best care for a child with mental or cognitive disabilities? Easy. Follow some of these helpful tips and trust your instincts.
Figure out their needs
There are some basics: food, water, shelter… beyond that, every child is different. Observe, let them try new and old activities. Only give them help if the situation becomes dangerous for them or if they ask for your help.
No matter what the child is doing, you need to encourage their good habits. Let’s be honest, we all remember to reprimand; to tell the child no when they pick up the expensive vase in the living room and so on, but we rarely remember to praise them, especially once they are out of their toddler years. Remember to encourage and you’ll have a happier child.
Go at their Pace
Just because your favourite children’s book says they should be able to ________ by the age of ________, don’t put extra pressure on your child. Understand that development is different for everyone and that we all progress at our own place. Better yet, if you discover that your child is say fantastic at math, but a terrible English student praise them for their success. It’s okay to encourage them to work on the skills they lack, but understand they may never be the scholar you were and that if you are going to help them learn, be sure to make it fun.