How to brief your before and after school nanny

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Juggle Street at 24/8/2020

Congratulations! You're ready to welcome a nanny into your family's busy life. While it may be daunting to hand over the reins, look forward to before and after school care benefiting your child and your mental health. To help you get started, here are some steps to brief your nanny. You may want to have a verbal discussion, but also provide a word doc or written summary of the most important points!

Emergency Contacts

Of course, the most important place to start! Provide a clear and concise summary of emergency contacts. Give your nanny your mobile, a work number, and also an alternate contact just in case you can't be reached (such as a grandparent or coworker). You can give this digitally, in your brief, and also keep a physical copy of the contacts at home. Display these in a prominent place such as the fridge.

You may also want to leave contacts for your child's doctor, any specialists, the Poisons Information Centre, and your closest police station. Don't let this freak you out though - your nanny is a professional and will be prepared for any emergency.

Allergy and Foods

Most nannies will have allergy specific training. If your child has an allergy, be sure to communicate all details to the nanny in charge of both before school care and after school care. Don't forget specifics of what the reaction looks like, how urgent treatment is, and the types of medicines used. Make sure to let them ask questions, but also have the information written down for them to reference later.

Aside from allergies, you may want to give your nanny a list of foods that your child prefers (or that you'd prefer they eat!). If your little ones get hungry after school, make sure to mention that, and any other routines around eating they may have. We all know kids can be fussy eaters!

Be as specific as you want with these instructions, but remember an experienced nanny will make great healthy decisions on their own, and may expose your family to new cuisines and dishes.

Activities and Autonomy

A nanny is a great way for your kids to experience other environments, events, and participate in educational, structural play. Make sure to specify what you're comfortable with - you may have a limitation on distance, spending, type of activity, or prefer they stay at home.

Behavioural Problems and Quirks

Make sure to arm your nanny as best as possible! If your kid has a favourite blanket they cannot live without - let them know, and include pictures. If there are any behavioural issues you're working on, be sure to discuss them as your nanny may have a great solution.

Homework or Tutoring Needs

Keep your nanny updated on their education, and they may be able to provide valuable structured play or development help.

Anything Else?

It is okay to be detailed if that makes you more comfortable! But remember, your nanny will have great ideas on how to make their before and after school care really beneficial. You can also tinker and provide updates as you go - a brief is important, but a nanny's experience with your child will come quickly!