Babysitting Offers Teens an Advantage in Life

Babysitting offers teens an advantageBeing a babysitter is one of the most successful forms of leadership training available to a teen today.  The skills learned and developed by being a sitter will help them to become productive and responsible adults.  It can also be a great way for them to make some extra money.

For parents, having someone watch their kids so that they can leave their home is like having a mini vacation.  It’s a chance to enjoy a few hours with their significant other or with other adults, have a few laughs and to relax.  For many others, a sitter or nanny is needed so that they can go to work to earn money to pay their bills.

There will always be a need for sitters and nannies but unfortunately, many think that it’s a very simple job.  The primary responsibility of a sitter is to keep the kids safe but sadly not all sitters know how to do that and some wouldn’t have a clue what to do in the event of an emergency.

There are hundreds of babysitting courses available across the country.  They provide the kids with the basics skills such as how to handle babies and how to change diapers.  Many courses help the kids identify potential dangers and show them what to expect when the kids need to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night or if they have a nightmare.  Parents may be use to this but for a teen, they can feel overwhelmed if they are not sure of themselves.

A babysitting course is always recommended and adults should consider someone who has taken a babysitting course.  Having a sitter or nanny that is qualified in first-aid training is ideal.

What To Do With The Kids has also created SitterAdvantage, an app designed to provide emergency help in the palm of their hands while providing them with the important information they, or emergency personnel, may need in the event of an emergency.  You can find out more about SitterAdvantage HERE

Here a few examples of how being a sitter can help teens gain an advantage in life:


Communication Skills

It is extremely important that the sitter is able to communicate clearly with the adults as to what needs to be done when they are gone.  The sitter must understand and must be able to ask questions before the adults leave and clearly explain any situations or events that have happened when they return.

It is just as important for the sitter to communicate with the kids they are looking after as well.  Just barking orders is no way to communicate.  Being able to get the kids to explain things to the sitter and being able to explain things to the kids is quite a skill.


Organizational Skills

A reliable sitter is organized.  Prior to the job, the sitter must have everything they need and for some this may include a small first-aid kit, a few books or even a board game to play with the kids.

Once the sitter receives instructions from the adult, they must make sure these tasks are done properly and on time especially when it involves something important such as giving medication.  Being organized is important for a successful job.



For some teens, this is the first time that they are really in charge of something important.  First and foremost, they are responsible for the safety of the kids.  The tasks assigned to them by the adults are not always suggestions:  bed time is at 8:30; the kids must brush their teeth; and the kids can’t eat an entire cake before they go to bed!

The sitter must always check on the kids after they go to bed and help them if they get up in the middle of the night and need to go to the bathroom or need a drink of water.  A sitter is always working even if the kids are asleep.

There are many tasks that may not be glamorous or fun, but they will be done if the sitter is responsible.


Problem Solving

For those of us with kids, rarely does anything go exactly as planned and when it does, you start to wonder why.  A sitter must be able to adapt and solve problems that come up and that usually happens at the drop of a hat.

Billy hid Mary’s favorite doll and now she’s crying; Charlie can’t find his pyjamas and would rather try to take the goldfish out for a walk; and the dog just ate Cathy’s last cookie and now she feels like her world has come to an end.  For parents, this is usually referred to as any given weeknight but for teens, it can be a major challenge.

They must be able to understand the situation, come up with a valid solution, implement it and hope that the problem is resolved and everyone is happy.  For many parents, this is like being at work first thing in the morning.

Being able to solve problems now will help them solve problems in the future as an adult, which may just help them save their marriage, their job and their well-being, especially when they become a parent.



Confidence is a skill that is developed over time.  Knowing that you are responsible, organized and able to communicate your message and solve problems as they arise is a great way to develop confidence.

If a teen is confident in their abilities and their decisions, they will be confident in life.  Not every decision they make will work out and not every decision they make will be right for them at that time but at least they were confident enough to make a decision.

Kids with confidence are less likely to be bullied and are more likely to succeed at what they do.

There are a few other skills that a sitter can develop such as social, analytical and time management, but these are the most obvious ones.

So the next time you hire a teenager to look after your kids, think about how you’re not just giving them a job but helping them to become better prepared for life.


Babysitters can improve their ability to keep kids safe and happy by using SitterAdvantage, the app from What To Do With The Kids.  You can find more information HERE


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