There are times when you will need a baby sitter to take care of your children for a while when you want to go out or go to work. You should be prepared and have a checklist for the baby sitter ready.
The first thing to consider is your house. Ask the baby sitter to come to your house a little earlier at the first time so that you have plenty of time to show her around the house and to explain everything she needs to know. Show her the rooms and tell her how everything locks and unlocks. Show her the alarm system if she is supposed to use it when you are away. Explain where you keep the medicine and the emergency kit. Tell her where the flashlight and the matches are. You should consider having everything in one place so that she won't get confused with too much information. Tell the baby sitter of something is not allowed, for example tell her that the children will insist on having a swim at the pool but she should say no.
When all emergencies are covered, move to the special needs of the children. If you have the baby sitter over to take care of a baby, tell her what time the baby must be fed, how much milk she is going to give and how to prepare it. Make sure she understands everything. Tell her what she should do if the baby is crying and what it takes to relax the baby most of the times. If you have older children, things are not easier and instructions should also be given. Discuss bed time and tell her if you would like her to help the children with their homework. Discuss the food that they will have and if she is allowed to prepare it or it is ready. Keep in mind that the children might tell the baby sitter that they want to do other things as watch television for three hours. Tell her if that is allowed. You should also say if your children are allergic to something or take any medication that must be given while you are absent.
Something else that may occur comes from your side. If your children are too young to be left with a stranger or if it is the first time they stay home alone without you, they might feel anxious. The best way to cope with this is to keep their routine. Give the baby sitter a list of activities that are normally going on in the house, for example, watching television, having dinner and going to bed. This way your children will feel safe in the house and keep their schedule.
The last thing in the list is the things that you allow the baby sitter to do. Be clear about smoking inside the house, having friends visit her or spending time talking on the phone. Tell her if she can take the children out for a walk or if she can help them with their homework. Don't leave things to chance, have your list ready.