Archive for the ‘Tips’ Category

Babies and Sunscreen

April 30, 2015

round-kids-sunglasses-2012-trends-for-babyOriginally posted here.

When is it OK for a baby to wear sunscreen?

Sunscreen is OK to use on babies 6 months or older. Younger babies should use other forms of sun protection. Consider these guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Food and Drug Administration and the American Cancer Society:

  • For babies 6 months or older. If your baby is 6 months or older, liberally use sunscreen. Also, avoid exposing your baby to the sun during peak hours — generally 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. — and dress your baby in protective clothing, a hat with a brim and sunglasses.
  • For babies younger than 6 months. If your baby is younger than 6 months, keep him or her out of direct sunlight. Protect your baby from sun exposure by dressing him or her in protective clothing, a hat with a brim and sunglasses.

When choosing baby sunscreen, pick a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more. Apply sunscreen generously, and reapply every two hours — or more often if your baby is spending time in the water or perspiring.

To avoid irritating your baby’s skin and eyes, consider using a sunscreen that contains only inorganic filters, such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Avoid using products that combine sunscreen and the insect repellent DEET, since sunscreen must be regularly reapplied and insect repellent typically doesn’t need to be reapplied.

Remember, just a few serious sunburns can increase your baby’s risk of skin cancer later in life. Taking simple steps now can go a long way toward protecting your baby from the risks of sun exposure.

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Nanny Interview: Packaging Yourself Professionally

April 22, 2015

Packaging Yourself ProfessionallyOriginally posted here, on the INA blog.

Nanny Interview and Job Search Tips

What people see and how we look gives others a first impression of us.  How can what we wear impact how others treat us?  Take a look at this Leave it to Beaver clip and the impression Dudley has on the Cleaver family.  Each person forms preconceived ideas of Dudley based on what he is wearing.

On a daily basis, nannies of young children must be able to get on the floor and be active with young children.  How we dress should not impede us from doing our duties with children.  Our dress and accessories should never create a safety hazard for ourselves or the children in our care.  Additionally, some practical sense should be observed when traveling with children, engaging in outdoor adventure activities and participating in messy play. As you work with children, your clothing should continue to cover body parts and absolutely limit overexposure.  Ladies should avoid low cut shirts and pants. Gentlemen should avoid low cut or sagging pants.  Jewelry that could be choking hazards should be left outside the child’s environment if possible.  Most of the time closed toe shoes or shoes with a back are safer when actively engaged in outdoor activities.

Employers may have specific dress codes or suggestions when attending specific events outside the home.  As with any profession, it is important to abide by the rules and policies set by employers and those in authority positions.

When going on a nanny interview with potential families or attending professional development trainings such as the INA Annual Conference, a professional business attire is typically the best course of action to demonstrate professionalism.  Grooming should also be more than a passing thought.  Be sure clothes are clean, free from stains, pressed and fit your body.  Avoid clothing that is too tight and too revealing.  Moderation is key.

Although no one wants to be judged on their appearances alone, what others see first does make an impression.  So in addition to your appearance, your actions speak volumes about your professionalism, ethics and values.  Parents want nannies to demonstrate high moral values and conduct themselves with dignity and integrity.  They want the best caring for their children.

Everyone knows that little eyes are always watching us too.  Young children pick up on what you say and do even when you might not think they are aware.  Modeling appropriate behaviors both inside the home or eye shot of young children is a given.  Did you know that even in your private life outside of work others are watching you?  Yes, others are always watching.  Like it or not nannies are held to a higher standard than many other professions.  Since you care for and teach children, society views your actions to be fair game for others to critique.  This may not seem fair that what you do in your off time is criticized. But, this is the reality.

Moving on from your appearance to your interactions with others, let’s examine some general tips on being a positive person and getting along with others:

  • Be more tolerant and less of a judge. Everyone has their quirky habits. What is “Normal” to you may not be “Normal” to me!
  • Respect differences! Sometimes it is best to stay quiet in situations and less is more.
  • It is best to model appropriate behaviors to children.  They are watching you and taking cues from how you react to situations, speak to others, tone of speech and body language.
  • Don’t offer up your life story to a stranger in the elevator or spill all of your disappointments, tragedies and negative attitudes to anyone who is around especially employers.
  • When someone asks in passing, “How are you today?” they usually do not really want to know your every ache and pain.
  • Those sayings that Grandma used way back when — still apply! “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”
  • Try to listen to the other person’s perspective.
  • Write down compromises and post on refrigerator when trying to resolve conflicts.
  • If it is not yours, then don’t take it/use it/abuse it/ consume it/…

The main concern is how children interpret our actions and
how we model appropriate behaviors. 

You may not be Mary Poppins flying in for your interview but try to set yourself apart from other nannies interviewing for a family.  Focus on your positive attributes and sell yourself by providing examples of your work, an exit portfolio, written testimonials from past clients.

Should You Watch Over Your Tween Online?

April 16, 2015

How to walk the fine line between giving them personal space and keeping them safe.
Originally posted on WebMD Magazine

In the early 1980s, in the evening after dinner, you could often find my 11-year-old self looking for privacy under my father’s desk — the looped phone cord stretched taut — talking to one of my girlfriends, Jenny, Amy, or Caitlin.

What we talked about — crushes, clothes, classes — is much like what our daughters are “talking” about today. But they’re doing it with their fingers as they engage in text messaging, IMs, taking and sending photos, and online chatting. And, like many parents I know, I often feel intimidated by these tools, even a touch afraid. Who might be trying to communicate with my kid? Will my children’s private texts and emails be forwarded? How exactly is IM used?

Nancy Willard, director of the Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use, says helping young people navigate these new social landscapes requires a rational head and engaged parenting. Willard is the author of Cyber-Safe Kids, Cyber-Savvy Teens: Helping Young People Learn to Use the Internet Safely and Responsibly. The good news is she believes the risk of predators and other dangers is wildly overestimated in the public’s imagination.

Teaching Your Kids Online Values

While it is true that many of today’s parents are “technological immigrants” — accommodating but not fully at home with new communication methods — Willard says the core values parents strive to teach children about social interactions remain the same: consideration, respect, and kindness.

Staying involved in your tween’s communications is step one, Willard says. “If your daughter is texting, you need to be one of the people she’s texting,” she says. By being in the mix, you are better situated to know whom your kids are communicating with and what they’re communicating about. And you will be more likely to be aware of a bullying text or an intrusive IM.

“It’s all about teachable moments,” Willard says. Help your children learn how to handle a bully’s email, just as you would offer them strategies for dealing with a bully on the school bus.

Another important element is to avoid overreacting if something goes wrong – for instance, if your child forwards a gossipy email or posts an inappropriate picture. “Your child needs to know that he or she can come to you and you’re going to work together to solve problems,” Willard says.

Three Digital Do’s for Parents

Think, then send.“The more embarrassing or damaging the material you post, the greater the likelihood it will spread widely,” Willard says. Parents need to teach kids not to write or type anything they wouldn’t say to someone face to face.

Face your own fear.Being hyper-concerned about kids’ texting and instant messaging can be dangerous. “Fear is interfering with the positive relationship we need to have between parents and kids to protect them,” Willard says. “It’s causing kids not to report because parents overreact.”

Get involved.“One time, some boys were sending my daughter sexually harassing messages,” Willard says. “I told her, ‘If you get a message from any of these people or about the situation, I need to see it so we can look at it and make sure you’re resolving it.'” When your child needs help negotiating a situation, be there.

What to Expect from a Vacation Nanny

April 1, 2015

Vacation-Nanny-250x250
Originally posted on the INA Blog.

When planning a vacation with children it is an option when traveling with children to have a vacation nanny.  There are several reasons why people opt to have help on their vacation or during a family or business travel trip.  The reasons range from needing an extra set of hands during the family vacation, to planning date nights, providing coverage when working or at a conference, and providing household assistance and or cleaning services.  Below are various ways that visitors use a vacation nanny when traveling.

Vacation Nanny:

Many families when traveling simply want the luxury of having an extra set of hands while on their trip.  They may have someone who works full days traveling around the city with them or spends the days at the beach or the pool acting as a nanny/entertainer for young children.  They may utilize the nanny not only during the day but as night as well, providing nanny services while the adults have dinner out/do a date night.  A vacation nanny should be expected not only to provide safe and reliable child care, but assist the family in covering nap times, planning fun activities for the kids, and educating the family about activities appropriate for the kids in the local area.  They can provide light housekeeping services as well to make things run smoother so the family is better able to fully enjoy their trip.

Hotel Nanny:

From time to time families will request a nanny for a single night out or a few nights out during a trip.  Many of the times these a date night vacation nanny will arrive with some games, activities, and the ability to be nurturing and put the kids to bed while the parent’s go out on the town.  They are used to working in a hotel environment with different kids who need “warming up” and the nanny should have a strong capability to be energetic and easily adaptable.  Vacation nannies are used to coming in to a situation where they do not know the kids and quickly building a relationship where the kids are able to have a great time and feel comfortable.

Conference/Work Trip Nanny:

There are a lot of families who come to town and need a nanny to cover time when they will be working or attending an event. A nanny that comes to a hotel to cover work time usually plans an outing or activities for the kids/babies.  They follow the regular or requested schedule of the family and are used to working in hotel rooms.  They are able to provide a fun, safe, environment while Mom or Dad is busy working for the day and adapt quickly and easily to the needs of the family.

Housekeeper Nanny:

From time to time when families are traveling they rent vacation homes and like to have daily assistance in the home cooking and cleaning.  This is considered a Housekeeper Nanny and can be very helpful in creating a great environment in a vacation rental.  This nanny can also provide childcare services within reason of being able to maintain the housekeeping tasks and cover things like parent’s night.

Hiring a vacation nanny can meet many different types of needs and requests.  If you are interested in learning more about the different types of coverage that can be provided when traveling and considering a vacation nanny consult with an INA member nanny agency for options and availability in your destination.

10 Things Every Parent Should Know About Play

March 4, 2015

2girlsOriginally posted here.

1.  Children learn through their play.
Don’t underestimate the value of play. Children learn and develop:

cognitive skills – like math and problem solving in a pretend grocery store

physical abilities – like balancing blocks and running on the playground

new vocabulary – like the words they need to play with toy dinosaurs

social skills – like playing together in a pretend car wash

literacy skills – like creating a menu for a pretend restaurant

2. Play is healthy.
Play helps children grow strong and healthy. It also counteracts obesity issues facing many children today.3. Play reduces stress.
Play helps your children grow emotionally. It is joyful and provides an outlet for anxiety and stress.
4. Play is more than meets the eye.
Play is simple and complex.  There are many types of play: symbolic, sociodramatic, functional, and games with rules-–to name just a few. Researchers study play’s many aspects:  how children learn through play, how outdoor play impacts children’s health, the effects of screen time on play, to the need for recess in the school day.5. Make time for play.
As parents, you are the biggest supporters of your children’s learning. You can make sure they have as much time to play as possible during the day to promote cognitive, language, physical, social, and emotional development.6. Play and learning go hand-in-hand.
They are not separate  activities. They are intertwined. Think about them as a science lecture with a lab. Play is the child’s lab.

7. Play outside.
Remember your own outdoor experiences of building forts, playing on the beach, sledding in the winter, or playing with other children in the neighborhood. Make sure your children create outdoor memories too.
8. There’s a lot to learn about play.
There’s a lot written on children and play. Here are some NAEYC articles and books about play. David Elkind’s The Power of Play (Da Capo, 2007 reprint) is also a great resource.9. Trust your own playful instincts.
Remember as a child how play just came naturally? Give your children time for play and see all that they are capable of when given the opportunity.
10. Play is a child’s context for learning.
Children practice and reinforce their learning in multiple areas during play. It gives them a place and a time for learning that cannot be achieved through completing a worksheet. For example, in playing restaurant, children write and draw menus, set prices, take orders, and  make out checks.  Play provides rich learning opportunities and leads to children’s success and self-esteem.

Top 4 Reasons Professional Nannies Work with a Local Nanny Agency

February 25, 2015

Local Nanny AgencyOriginally posted here.

As a career nanny, you have a number of avenues for finding a job, but finding just the right family can be a tricky task. You want to be respected for your experience and knowledge, compensated fairly, and treated as a professional. Using a local nanny agency can meet your needs and offers you peace of mind:

  1. Personal Attention & Support: When working with a local nanny agency, you will have all the personal attention you deserve throughout your job hunt. Look for an agency with a caring, professional staff to guide you through your job search. A veteran agency with a tenured staff will also have a great deal of knowledge and expertise in the industry. They will match your unique skillset and personality with the right families, and offer you jobs that meet your needs.
  2. Industry Knowledge & Professionalism: When you decided to work with a local nanny agency, you can expect to be treated as a professional. Seek out an agency who is involved with the nanny industry at large, and who knows what is standard for compensation, benefit and vacation packages. A local nanny agency has first hand knowledge of local wage and benefit packages. Families who work with nanny agencies are well educated, and treat their employees with the respect they deserve.
  3. Long-term Success: Families who work with a referral agency have realistic expectations about hiring a nanny. Look for an agency that provides families with an employment contract that outlines the job description, duties, compensation, paid time off, etc. You will also want agencies who educate their families on recommended intervals and processes for reviews to keep open communication between nannies and families.
  4. On-going Support: Local agencies offer ongoing support even after you have been placed with a family. Professional agencies will host events for nannies to network with fellow nannies, as well as ongoing training opportunities for development. They will seek to expand your skills as a nanny professional. Your agency should also offer unbiased counseling and/or mediation should you have any issues with your placement.

3 Areas For Nannies to Make a Big Impact

January 29, 2015

nanny impact

Originally posted here.

There’s a certain balancing act we nannies must manage in the course of doing our jobs. We want to help mold and shape our young charges, but then at the same time, we know we should leave the big character development stuff to their parents and stick to the basics. Where’s a loving, caring nanny to draw the line? We can’t fully answer this question for you—you and your family will have to hammer out the fine details of that one yourselves—but there are a few “safe” areas in the middle where everyone can meet and agree. Let’s take a look:

Cooking

Preparing meals and snacks for our kids is a big part of our job, and an important one, too. Childhood obesity has more than doubled over the past 30 years, according to the Journal of the American Medical Association, and more than one-third of American children are currently overweight or obese. It’s vital we teach and model healthy eating habits to the kids we take care of. To do that:

  • Take them grocery shopping with you. Talk about the benefits of low-fat or nonfat dairy products, lean meats, whole grains, fruit and veggies. Download the OurGroceries app to your smartphone for some high-tech shopping help.
  • Have them help in the kitchen. Helping to prepare their own food will give them a sense of accomplishment, and they may be more apt to try something new if they had a hand in making it. Food Networkfeatures numerous recipes kids can help make.
  • Show them that healthy eating can be fun and yummy. Let them dip their veggies in low-fat ranch, hummus, salsa or yogurt-based dressing; whirl up a delicious fruit smoothie in a juicer or blender. The NutriBullet system comes with a variety of nutritional recipes and is easy to clean, too.

Cleaning

Everyone in the house can agree that kids should help with the household chores—well, except the kids, of course. But there’s good reason to require chores from the kids you watch: According to a Wellesley College study entitled “Children’s Autonomy and Responsibility: An Analysis of Child-Rearing Advice,” chores help them develop into caring, grounded young adults, and a lack of household chores makes them less responsible in other areas of their lives. To get them involved:

  • Make a chore chart. Pinterest has a great page on this topic, with a variety of printable chore charts, lists of age-appropriate chores and tips for making chores fun.
  • Don’t insist on perfection, and don’t be shy with praise. You don’t want to make the whole affair into an anxiety-ridden struggle. Of course they have to do their best, but also remember that no one’s perfect.
  • Be consistent. We know that sometimes it’s simply easier to do it yourself, but if they aren’t expected to follow through, they won’t.

Reading

Ready for some shocking facts about kids and literacy?

  • Two-thirds of students who can’t read proficiently by the end of fourth grade will end up in jail or on welfare, and more than 70 percent of U.S. inmates can’t read above a fourth-grade level (One World Literacy Foundation).
  • Kids who don’t read proficiently by fourth grade are four times more likely to drop out of school (American Association of School Librarians).
  • Fourth graders who have 25 or more books at home do better on reading tests than children who don’t have that many (National Center for Education Statistics).

Don’t wait to start reading to the children in your care. No matter what age they are, set aside time each day for reading, whether together or solo.Scholastic.com features six great reading apps for kids—give those a try.

Things to Do in January with Your Family

January 19, 2015

mom-daughter-musicOriginally posted here.

January may seem like a dreary month since it can get so cold outside. But you can find plenty of fun things do in January with your family in this first month of the new year with activities and celebrations that make all of you forget about the weather outside.

Enjoy Winter Activities Together
Kids are playing indoors more these days. Keep them busy without video games. Try a complete list of winter activities for kids that will entertain your children until the spring thaw.

Play Indoors
Staying in the house doesn’t mean the kids have to park it in front of the TV. There are plenty of indoor activities for kids that involve active games, pretend play and creativity exercises.

Sign Up for Music Classes
New sessions of kids’ music classes start this month and many programs are geared toward the school-age child, all the way down to classes for mommies and babies. Not interested in classes? Try music activities with kids that allow you to strike up the band on your own terms.

National Hobby Month
Find a new hobby to enjoy with your children during National Hobby Month. Explore many fun hobbies, such as jewelry making, rubber stamping, origami, painting and more.

National Soup Month
Warm up your winter days with hot soup. National Soup Month is the perfect time to get your kids in the kitchen to make soup together. Whip up a batch of chicken soup,vegetable beef soup, bean soup and more.

National Staying Healthy Month
Cold and flu season is kicking into high gear. Keep kids safe and healthy with these winter health tips. Get your children involved with health, safety and nutrition worksheets.

National Thank You Month
Practice the gift of “thank you” during National Thank You Month. Encourage your kids to write thank you notes and show them how to make those thank you cards special.

Oatmeal Month
When else do you get to celebrate all things oatmeal? Make oatmeal cookies together. Send them off to school with a bowl of warm oatmeal in their bellies.

Outdoor Winter Safety: Staying Safe During Winter Activities

January 12, 2015

116577-300x200-KidswintersafetyOriginally posted here.

As the weather turns chilly, new dangers for kids are appearing; but these winter safety tips for children can help keep them safe, warm and healthy through the coldest months of the year.

Why Winter can be Dangerous

Winter weather can be dangerous in several ways. The dropping temperatures and wind chills create climatic hazards, while the general indoor lethargy of winter can create health hazards due to overeating and less activity. Winter sports, holiday gifts and winter nutrition also present unique hazards that parents should be aware of in order to safeguard their children’s health and well-being. With careful planning and supervision, however, children can enjoy the fun and freedom of playing indoors or outdoors on chilly winter days without substantial risk.
Not every type of winter hazard is applicable to every child, but understanding the basic risks and how to minimize them can help parents protect their children from the ravages of winter.

Playing Outside

The cold temperatures and biting winds are the most obvious hazards when children play in the snow. Children who are not prepared for winter climates can suffer frostbite, hypothermia and severe chills that can lead to illness, poor judgment and even permanent injury. To avoid the dangers of cold weather:

  • Dress in multiple layers to play outside, including extra layers for legs, feet and hands.
  • Always wear hats and gloves when playing outdoors in cold weather; the biggest proportions of body heat are lost through the head and hands.
  • Limit the amount of time spent playing outdoors to safe intervals, and bring children inside periodically to warm up.
  • Remove all wet clothing immediately and change to dry clothes if going back outdoors.
  • Wear sunscreen on all exposed skin to guard against burns from bright sunlight and snow glare.
  • Do not permit children to play outdoors in poor weather such as snowstorms, extreme cold or high winds.
  • Wear brightly colored outer clothing that is easily seen from a distance.
  • Do not dress children in winter wear with drawstrings – they can cut off circulation and make frostbite a greater threat, and loose drawstrings may present a strangulation hazard.
  • Teach children to avoid playing near snowplow areas.
  • Do not permit children to dig snow tunnels or forts that may collapse and bury them.
  • Avoid snowball fights that can lead to injuries from dangerous projectiles.
  • Keep roofs, gutters and awnings free from snow and icicle buildup that could collapse and injure a child. Similarly, do not permit children to pull icicles from the roof.
  • Teach children never to touch or lick exposed metal (fences, flagpoles, etc.) in winter.
  • Do not allow children to eat snow. It may contain pollutants, dirt, fecal matter or other contaminants, and the cold snow can chill a young child’s body to dangerous levels.
  • Regularly de-ice or sand sidewalks, driveways, patios and other areas where children may play.

Winter Sports

Winter sports can be a great way for children to stay active and enjoy colder temperatures, but each sport presents it own unique hazards. These winter safety tips for children can help them enjoy sports safely and comfortably.

  • Always use proper safety equipment and gear, including sports gogglesand helmets, while playing winter sports.
  • Engage in safe sports behavior such as following the rules of the game and eliminating horseplay that can lead to accidents and injuries.
  • Enroll children in lessons from a qualified professional for advanced winter sports such as figure skating, skiing and snowboarding to ensure they learn safe techniques.
  • Only play winter sports in safe, approved locations rather than using seemingly frozen ponds, unknown hillsides or other potentially dangerous locations.

Staying Healthy

The long days of winter often keep children indoors, which can lead to hours of inactivity. Furthermore, children are more likely to contract illnesses during the winter months because they are in more confined spaces. To stay healthy during the winter, consider these safety tips:

  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet that includes fruits and vegetables.
  • Teach children proper hand-washing techniques to kill germs and bacteria or use hand sanitizer if necessary.
  • Keep children home from school and other public places if they are sick.
  • Ask a pediatrician about the necessity for flu vaccines for young children.

Holiday Safety Tips

The holidays are a time of fun and excitement, but they can also be dangerous. Inappropriate toys, indulgent foods and unsafe decorations can create hazards that may cause injuries to children of all ages. These safety tips can help avoid the greatest risks:

  • Do not use “candy” style ornaments or holiday decorations that may fool young children.
  • Limit the amount of holiday sweets and treats children are allowed to eat.
  • Choose unbreakable ornaments for safe tree decorations, and be sure no ornaments are small enough to be swallowed.
  • Only give age-appropriate toys and gifts to children.
  • Check toy recall notices for any holiday gift items.

Heating Tips

The natural reaction to falling temperatures is to raise the heat, either through external, supplemental heaters or by turning on a fireplace or other open flames. These safety tips can keep away the winter chill without risk:

  • Keep candles, kerosene lamps, and other open flames out of reach of children at all times.
  • Do not put a space heater in a child’s room.
  • Teach children fire safety procedures, including how to spot potential hazards.
  • Do not allow children to play in fires such as roasting marshmallows in a fireplace.
  • Practice family fire drills to reinforce safe behavior.
  • Do not use electric blankets for young children.

In Conclusion

By following the proper winter safety tips for children, parents can ensure that their sons and daughters will be warm, happy, and safe during the coldest months of the year, and seeing them enjoy winter safely will warm any parent’s heart.

Nanny Interview and Job Search Tips

November 12, 2014

Packaging Yourself ProfessionallyOriginally posted here.

What people see and how we look gives others a first impression of us.  How can what we wear impact how others treat us?  Take a look at this Leave it to Beaver clip and the impression Dudley has on the Cleaver family.  Each person forms preconceived ideas of Dudley based on what he is wearing.

On a daily basis, nannies of young children must be able to get on the floor and be active with young children.  How we dress should not impede us from doing our duties with children.  Our dress and accessories should never create a safety hazard for ourselves or the children in our care.  Additionally, some practical sense should be observed when traveling with children, engaging in outdoor adventure activities and participating in messy play. As you work with children, your clothing should continue to cover body parts and absolutely limit overexposure.  Ladies should avoid low cut shirts and pants. Gentlemen should avoid low cut or sagging pants.  Jewelry that could be choking hazards should be left outside the child’s environment if possible.  Most of the time closed toe shoes or shoes with a back are safer when actively engaged in outdoor activities.

Employers may have specific dress codes or suggestions when attending specific events outside the home.  As with any profession, it is important to abide by the rules and policies set by employers and those in authority positions.

When going on a nanny interview with potential families or attending professional development trainings such as the INA Annual Conference, a professional business attire is typically the best course of action to demonstrate professionalism.  Grooming should also be more than a passing thought.  Be sure clothes are clean, free from stains, pressed and fit your body.  Avoid clothing that is too tight and too revealing.  Moderation is key.

Although no one wants to be judged on their appearances alone, what others see first does make an impression.  So in addition to your appearance, your actions speak volumes about your professionalism, ethics and values.  Parents want nannies to demonstrate high moral values and conduct themselves with dignity and integrity.  They want the best caring for their children.

Everyone knows that little eyes are always watching us too.  Young children pick up on what you say and do even when you might not think they are aware.  Modeling appropriate behaviors both inside the home or eye shot of young children is a given.  Did you know that even in your private life outside of work others are watching you?  Yes, others are always watching.  Like it or not nannies are held to a higher standard than many other professions.  Since you care for and teach children, society views your actions to be fair game for others to critique.  This may not seem fair that what you do in your off time is criticized. But, this is the reality.

Moving on from your appearance to your interactions with others, let’s examine some general tips on being a positive person and getting along with others:

  • Be more tolerant and less of a judge. Everyone has their quirky habits. What is “Normal” to you may not be “Normal” to me!
  • Respect differences! Sometimes it is best to stay quiet in situations and less is more.
  • It is best to model appropriate behaviors to children.  They are watching you and taking cues from how you react to situations, speak to others, tone of speech and body language.
  • Don’t offer up your life story to a stranger in the elevator or spill all of your disappointments, tragedies and negative attitudes to anyone who is around especially employers.
  • When someone asks in passing, “How are you today?” they usually do not really want to know your every ache and pain.
  • Those sayings that Grandma used way back when — still apply! “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”
  • Try to listen to the other person’s perspective.
  • Write down compromises and post on refrigerator when trying to resolve conflicts.
  • If it is not yours, then don’t take it/use it/abuse it/ consume it/…

The main concern is how children interpret our actions and
how we model appropriate behaviors. 

You may not be Mary Poppins flying in for your interview but try to set yourself apart from other nannies interviewing for a family.  Focus on your positive attributes and sell yourself by providing examples of your work, an exit portfolio, written testimonials from past clients.

– See more at: http://nanny.org/nanny-interview-packaging-professionally/?code=204&message=User+not+logged+in.#sthash.vD6gyYAK.dpuf


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