Monday, July 10, 2017

10 Tips & Tricks for Babysitting & Nannying

If you read my weekly recap posts (you can read last weeks recap HERE), then you know that I nanny 5 days a week and often times babysit on the weekends or in the evenings of weekdays after I get done nannying.

This is only my first summer nannying but I've been babysitting for almost 6 years so I think I have a pretty good grip on what kids like to do and what they don't like to do. Obviously, a lot of this depends on the age of the kid(s) and the time of day you're watching them (daytime vs. nighttime) but I have a set of go-to activities that I like to do with the kids I babysit for and the little boy I nanny for.  I had always thought about writing a post like this but didn't know if anyone would be interested but I received a comment on one of my recent posts asking for a post like this so today I'm sharing 10 of my tips & tricks on things to do with kiddos that you babysit or nanny for!

Go to a park

Let them get all their energy by letting them run around the park, play on the ground and swing on the swings. If the park has an open field, bring a soccer ball and let them pass the ball around. If there's baseball diamonds, bring baseball gloves and a couple baseballs and let them toss the ball back and forth. Another thing that I find kids really like to do when at the park is to go on a scavenger hunt, all I do for this is give them random things (something blue, something round) and walk with them around the park to collect various things. 

Go out to breakfast, lunch or dinner

If you feel comfortable taking the kid(s) out to eat, I find that they really enjoy heading out to a restaurant for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Just make sure you ask the parents what the kiddos usually order so you know what to get them in case they don't know what they get. 

Bake cookies

Kids really enjoy going through the steps to bake/cook things and are so proud of themselves when they see how things turned out! You can also use this as an incentive, if they do everything they're supposed to do, then they get to bake cookies with you. 

Color with chalk

Forget the paper and markers, sidewalk chalk is definitely the way to go in my book! You don't have to worry about them getting markers on the tables or walls and it gets them outside! Offer to trace the outline of them and then let them draw on their clothes and facial features. If you're willing to get a little bit messier, one of my favorite chalk activities is to color big circles of each color and let the kids put their hands in the chalk dust and make handprints all over the driveway and sidewalk. If you're not wanting to get the kids that messy, draw a hopscotch board or create a game of your own.

Check out the Target dollar section for inexpensive toys & crafts 

Before you head over to babysit/nanny, check out the dollar section at your local Target! I always find fun little toys or crafts that I take over to the kiddos. They always get really excited when they find out I brought them something special and I will usually only let them have whatever it is that I brought after they've cleaned up/ate dinner/bathed/etc. Again, it's a nice incentive for doing what their supposed to do and it doesn't break the bank.

Go to the zoo, pool, or movies 

If you have a car and are comfortable driving the kids (and if the parents are comfortable with you driving them) spend the day at the zoo or the pool or if the weather isn't cooperating, let the kids pick a movie that they want to see! If you're going somewhere where you're going to be outdoors in the sun, make sure you have plenty of water and sunscreen because the last thing you want is for the kiddos to get sunburnt or dehydrated! 

Go for a bike ride 

If the kid(s) know how to ride a bike, taking them on a bike ride around their neighbor is an easy way to pass the time and it gets them outside & moving (and away from any technology!) Just make sure they wear their helmets, you want to make sure you're reminding them that helmets aren't optional when riding bikes and so that in the event that they crash into something or fall over, their heads will be protected. 

Take a trip to your house 

I recently started bringing the little boy that I nanny for over to my house once a week to play with my dog, talk with my younger brother and play with some of our old toys and he LOVES it! It's a nice change of scenery for the kids, it's basically like a field trip for them! Even if you don't have any toys for them to play with, just letting them see your house and meet your family is sure to entertain them!

Catch bugs

The little boy I nanny for and I catch bugs all the time. He loves it. While I am definitely not a bug person, at all, it keeps him happy and when the kiddos are happy, I'm happy. Once you catch something, you can also look up whatever it is that you caught and teach the kiddos about it. Fun & educational, can you tell I'm going to be an elementary school teacher? ;)

Do science experiments

There are so many cool, inexpensive, & simple science experiments for kids on Pinterest! Whether it be the Mentos & Diet Coke reaction or showing the kids how colors mix with food coloring & water, science experiments are, again, a fun and educational way to occupy the kiddos for a while.

What are your favorite things to do with the kiddos you babysit or nanny for?



  1. Love these tips and tricks! So helpful for nannying!


  2. Thanks so much for the tips!! I can't believe you turned my idea into a blog post! Once again, thanks!

    1. Absolutely! Thank you so much for the idea!


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