This is the final post in the Back to School Series. The last post I talked about how you can have your family room double as a playroom in a way that works for both the kids and the adults. Check it out here. Today I’m talking about a babysitting notebook. A babysitting notebook helps things run smoothly by giving your babysitter more than just the basics. This notebook will help them to be able to make the best choices for your children no matter what the situation is.
I recommend having 5 sections (or tabs) in your notebook. These will be labeled: Emergency Contact Information, General Information, Approved Activities, Approved Foods, and EMERGENCY. I recommend getting a small presentation binder and adding tabs and the following documents to it for quick reference.
EMERGENCY CONTACT INFORMATION
In the first tab you will put all of your emergency contact information. This includes you and your husband’s numbers, any relatives that live nearby, at least one neighbor (make sure you have their permission), your child’s doctor’s number, and the Poison Control Center’s number.
In the second tab you will include General Information such as your address and the nearest cross streets, your health insurance information, and the 24hr nurse line provided by your insurance.
One thing that you might need to check is your babysitter may not be able to speak with your child’s doctor unless they have an authorization. Your doctor’s office should have a form that you will need to fill out in person and provide the information for your babysitters, so that in the case of an emergency they can call and speak with a nurse or a doctor.
In this tab you can also provide the child’s schedule for example nap times and bedtime. One final thing to include in the second tab is a list of household instructions. This can include instructions for how to operate the tv/video or even the dishwasher and oven.
The third tab in your notebook should be an approved activities list. This can include parks they can walk to, what parts of the home they are allowed to play in, or even specifically what toys they can play with.
The fourth tab should include approved/non-approved food lists. Make a list of what foods your children can eat and where to find them and how to prepare it.
The fifth and final tab in your notebook should be an emergency tab. This is where you can store documents on how to care for a choking child, any first aid/cpr documents and poison prevention tips.
Here’s a link to a good reference that the red cross has made: https://www.redcross.org/images/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m4240175_Pediatric_ready_reference.pdf
They also have a babysitter’s reference guide here: https://www.redcross.org/images/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m4440138_Babysitting_Emergency_Reference_Guide.pdf
One final thing you can do is to have your babysitter take a Babysitting class through the Red Cross. They offer both online and in-person options. You can find a list of classes here: http://www.redcross.org/take-a-class/babysitting-child-care
Remember that this is only effective if you keep it current and keep it in a place in your home that the babysitter knows where it is and is able to quickly reference it when there is a need.
COMING SOON: Free Printable of each Babysitting worksheet