As with a professional babysitter, be sure to set up a good line of communication. If they've done a great job, tell them! If you see any problems when you come home from a night out, talk about them right away to your child. Find a way to make these talks more professional than your normal banter. Have a cup of tea with them, or take a walk and talk about the job in another milieu — one that you are not both used to. Finally, and most importantly, give encouragement. One well-placed compliment can spur even the most stubborn child to become a great caregiver. For more tips on how to set up a good line of communication, click here.
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If you think that your child has the capacity, make sure to encourage them to sit for local families and friends in your neighborhood. The more they sit professionally, the more responsible they will become, and as an added bonus, you can consult the friends to make sure that they are getting better as a caregiver. Just remember to consult your child before offering their services to friends directly, as this will make them think they have no power in the matter. Also make sure to let them see the results of their work with outside families. Even if you cringe to see them spend everything on iTunes, let them have a few experiences of purchasing things with their earned cash. Empowering them to make their own money on jobs might spark an entrepreneurial note in them — you might find yourself having to book jobs with them weeks in advance!