Babysitter Solutions: New Uses for Schooltime Sitters

Like to multitask? Incorporate different jobs to keep your babysitter busy.

When your kids head back to school and the house is empty for a good portion of the day, you might think your babysitter's job is done. For most moms, however, the school year is more hectic than ever. Case in point: You need to come up with three uses for an old milk carton faster than a speeding bullet, schedule math tutoring, karate lessons and three parent-teacher conferences and bake a Mexican dish for Multicultural Day. If that's the case, consider multitasking with your babysitter to help you manage. Read on to find out the most popular ways that clever multitasking moms use their favorite caregivers to make their lives easier.

Einstein in Disguise
Are your kids having trouble in math? Consider using your sitter as a tutor. "I spent five months working with my sitter Amanda before I realized that she was training to be an actuary," states Cleveland mom of one Taraise J. "The minute I found out, I doubled her pay and had her tutor my son in math during sitting jobs." Using a babysitter as a tutor is a no-brainer. Not only can sitters aid with homework and school projects, but they are often sitting during the times when homework and school projects are being done. Just make sure to compensate your tutor/babysitter well for tutoring. Tutors in New York City can make more than $100 an hour on an average day, so ask around and do your homework on your region's going rate.

Fitness, Anyone?
In an absolutely brilliant move, Chicago mom of two Andrea T. hired her personal trainer to double as a babysitter. "She was smart, sweet and slightly hyper all the time," states Andrea. "She was just perfect for my kids, who are constantly flying off the walls. For an added raise, I hired her in April to work with me both at the gym and at home after babysitting jobs. I'm more toned than I ever expected for this summer!" Andrea is one of several moms who have started scouting the gym scene for the perfect babysitter. Smart, fitness-minded and usually young, physical trainers are often looking for extra work to supplement their training income. Have a trainer in mind but not sure she is interested? "It was easy to find out if Rachel was interested," states Andrea. "I found her at the gym, noticed that she was playing with some of the kids, and took her to lunch to talk." If this doesn't work with your busy schedule, try engaging your prospective sitter in a talk between workouts, or talk directly to the head trainer at your gym to see if there might be a match for you. (Just make sure to stress that the majority of your trainings will be at the gym, or else they will get worried that you will try to steal her!)

Does your sitter tend more toward group sports? Consider using her as a soccer or baseball coach if you run a local league, or even just as an assistant coach or the head of a neighborhood program. It's a great way to further bring her into your family life and also promote some great sitter bonding with your kids.

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