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How to Entertain a Kid You're Babysitting

Here's how to babysit a child and keep the stimuli coming.


  • Step 1: Prepare fun crafts Prepare age-appropriate crafts that concentrate the child’s attention. Using drawing and construction paper, crayons, glue sticks, glitter, cotton balls, and child-safe scissors, work with children make pictures that tell stories.
  • TIP: Let the child voice what they want to play so they are invested in the fun. Go along, letting them use their imagination.
  • Step 2: Take walks Take walks and look for sticks, flowers, and dandelions, which can be included in art projects or made into bouquets for parents.
  • Step 3: Stage time-outs Stage time-outs by playing a meditation-imagination game, sitting with eyes closed and taking the child on a great imaginary exploration of a magical place.
  • TIP: If you’re comfortable telling stories, let them embellish and add characters to take the story where they want.
  • Step 4: Organize a treasure hunt Organize a treasure hunt around or outside the house, leaving clues on slips of paper in nearly hidden spots.
  • Step 5: Make forts Make forts out of blankets draped over dining room chairs or other furniture. Pretend the floor is lava and randomly placed cushions are rocks.
  • Step 6: Play board games Play board games that emphasize sportsmanship and cooperation more than winning. Any educational aspect is a plus.
  • TIP: Be encouraging and energetic.
  • Step 7: Make rubbings Lay broad sheets of drawing paper against objects to make rubbings with crayons – tire tracks, manhole covers, or house numbers.
  • Step 8: Clean up together Involve the child in cleaning up messes by inventing a song about how good it is to clean. Make a competition out of who will be first to get everything done.
  • FACT: Nannies in New York City can make $800 to $1,000 a week.

You Will Need

  • Drawing and construction paper
  • Crayons
  • Glue sticks
  • Glitter
  • Cotton balls
  • Safety scissors
  • Treasure
  • Slips of paper
  • Blankets
  • Board games

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