Children: How to Become a Babysitter

Girl BabysitterIs someone in your family ready for that first babysitting job? Babysitting is almost a rite of passage for tweens and teens. But, just like with any other job, babysitting has its rules!

That’s especially true in Maryland, the only state in the country that dictates that babysitters must be at least 13 years of age. But, being mature, reliable, capable and age 13 isn’t all it takes to be a good babysitter. Training and knowledge are key components of success for a youngster’s “first real job.”

Certification
Official babysitter certification, available through a number of sources, provides nearly everything a youngster will need to know in order to be a competent babysitter. In addition, parents may feel better knowing that the sitter they are hiring has received formal babysitting training.

A great resource is the American Red Cross, which offers both online and classroom babysitting certification courses.

Check your local American Red Cross chapter for classes in your area. Or, sign up for the Red Cross online course in Babysitting Basics.

Know the basics
At the very least, the babysitter-to-be should be taught safety, first aid and the basics of CPR. There are a number of resources to turn to for training at all levels. Try your YMCA, local fire department or hospital, Girl Scouts or other health, safety or teen organizations in your community.

Getting practice
Experience also helps. Children not yet old enough to babysit can volunteer to help care for children at their church or a local nursery school, or offer to be a mother’s helper for a friend or neighbor. The knowledge and skills your child learns as a volunteer will increase his or her confidence, and competence, in the babysitting role.

Payday
What’s the country’s average hourly pay for a babysitter these days? It might be higher than you thought!

Who earns the most? Babysitters in San Francisco!

Babysitting – Yes or No?
Is a babysitting job a good fit for your child? Here are some pros and cons to consider.

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