A babysitter


Babysitters provide short-term care services to children on the premises of the employer, depending on the employer’s needs. They organise play activities and entertain children with games and other cultural and educative activities according to their respective age, prepare meals, give them bathes, transport them from and to school and assist them with homework on a punctual basis.

The duties of a babysitter include, but are not limited to:

  • Reviewing caregivers’ instructions and requesting helpful clarification when needed.
  • Monitoring self-directed feeding, hygiene-related, and tidying activities.
  • Aiding applicable minors with routine tasks, if required.
  • Keeping the play area safe and free from hazards while monitoring children consistently throughout the day.
  • Encouraging sufficient, cognitively stimulating individual and group play.
  • Promoting adherence to non-negotiable curfews.
  • Modeling actions that emulate caregivers’ principles, unless deemed inappropriate.
  • Securing help from medical, familial, and similar structures, as required.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to babysitter:


Working conditions

Babysitters typically work in the homes of the families they are employed by, though some may work in daycare centers or other group child care facilities. They may work full time or part time, during the day or at night, on weekdays or weekends, or on a regular schedule or as needed.

Some babysitters are self-employed and work for multiple families, while others are employed by a single family. The work can be physically demanding, as babysitters are often required to lift and carry children, as well as play with them for long periods of time. The work can also be emotionally demanding, as babysitters must deal with crying children, tantrums, and other challenging behaviors. In addition, babysitters must be able to handle the stress of being responsible for the safety and well-being of children.

Minimum qualifications

People who refer to themselves as babysitters are not necessarily qualified to be one. In this line of work, formal training isn’t required, and an applicant’s qualifications can vary by age, experience and life status – such as a college student looking for part-time work or an older woman looking for full-time employment. The needs of the family will dictate who fills the role best, but there are some qualifications that may be more important than others. In general, babysitters are at an advantage if they have experience caring for children whose ages are similar to the ones they are applying to watch.

Most babysitters learn the skills and knowledge they need for their role while on the job. Training may include learning about the child’s daily routine, how to prepare meals, how to keep the child’s home clean and how to handle emergencies. Training may also include learning about first aid, fire safety and how to use the phone and the internet.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Babysitter is a Skill level 2 occupation.

Babysitter career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to babysitter.

child care worker
au pair
early years teaching assistant

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of babysitter. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of babysitter with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

legal guardian
activity leader
ski instructor
private chef

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of babysitter.

  • Workplace sanitation: The importance of a clean, sanitary workspace for example through use of hand disinfectant and sanitizer, in order to minimise infection risk between colleagues or when working with children.
  • Babysitting: Temporarily taking care of a child for a small remuneration.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of babysitter.

  • Assist children with homework: Help children with school tasks. Assist the child with the interpretation of the assignment and the solutions. Make sure the child studies for tests and exams.
  • Prepare sandwiches: Make filled and open sandwiches, paninis and kebabs.
  • Play with children: Engage in activities for enjoyment, tailored to children of a certain age. Be creative and improvise to amuse children with activities such as tinkering, sports or board games.
  • Communicate with youth: Use verbal and non-verbal communication and communicate through writing, electronic means, or drawing. Adapt your communication to children and young people`s age, needs, characteristics, abilities, preferences, and culture.
  • Prepare ready-made dishes: Get ready for serving snacks and sandwiches or heat up ready-made bar products if requested.
  • Attend to children’s basic physical needs: Tend to children by feeding them, dressing them, and, if necessary, regularly changing their diapers in a sanitary manner.
  • Maintain relations with children’s parents: Inform children`s parents of the activities planned, program`s expectations and children`s individual progress.
  • Supervise children: Keep the children under supervision for a certain period of time, ensuring their safety at all times.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of babysitter. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Baby care: The procedures required to take care of children up to the age of 1, such as feeding, bathing, soothing, and diapering the baby.
  • Disability care: The specific methods and practices used in providing care to people with physical, intellectual and learning disabilities.
  • Common children’s diseases: The symptoms, characteristics, and treatment of diseases and disorders that often affect children, such as the measles, chickenpox, asthma, the mumps, and head lice.
  • Pedagogy: The discipline that concerns the theory and practice of education including the various instructional methods for educating individuals or groups.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of babysitter. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Manage children’s problems: Promote the prevention, early detection, and management of children`s problems, focusing on developmental delays and disorders, behavioural problems, functional disabilities, social stresses, mental disorders including depression, and anxiety disorders.
  • Carry out wound care: Cleanse, irrigate, probe, debride, pack and dress wounds.
  • Provide first aid: Administer cardiopulmonary resuscitation or first aid in order to provide help to a sick or injured person until they receive more complete medical treatment.
  • Feed pets: Make sure that pets are given appropriate food and water on time.
  • Assess the development of youth: Evaluate the different aspects of development needs of children and young people.
  • Support the positiveness of youths: Help children and young people to assess their social, emotional and identity needs and to develop a positive self image, enhance their self esteem and improve their self reliance.
  • Use food preparation techniques: Apply food preparation techniques including the selecting, washing, cooling, peeling, marinating, preparing of dressings and cutting of ingredients.
  • Handle chemical cleaning agents: Ensure proper handling, storage and disposal of cleaning chemicals in accordance with regulations.
  • Iron textiles: Press and iron in order to shape or flatten textiles giving them their final finishing appearance. Iron by hand or with steam pressers.
  • Dispose waste: Dispose waste in accordance with legislation, thereby respecting environmental and company responsibilities.
  • Clean surfaces: Disinfect surfaces in accordance with sanitary standards.
  • Clean rooms: Clean rooms by cleaning glasswork and windows, polishing furniture, vacuuming carpets, scrubbing hard floors, and removing garbage.
  • Assist in children’s development of basic personal skills: Encourage and facilitate the development of children’s natural curiosity and social and language abilities through creative and social activities such as storytelling, imaginative play, songs, drawing, and games.
  • Support children’s wellbeing: Provide an environment that supports and values children and helps them to manage their own feelings and relationships with others.
  • Communicate by telephone: Liaise via telephone by making and answering calls in a timely, professional and polite manner.
  • Use cooking techniques: Apply cooking techniques including grilling, frying, boiling, braising, poaching, baking or roasting.

ISCO group and title

5311 – Child care workers

  1. Babysitter – ESCO
  2. Babysitter Job Description: Salary, Duties, & More – Climb the Ladder
  3. Responsibilities of a Babysitter – Chron
  4. Expert Babysitter Job Description Examples | LiveCareer
  5. Babysitter Job Description – Betterteam
  6. Featured image: Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels
Last updated on November 17, 2022

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