Babysitting jobs tend to require a great need for ‘entertaining’ the children that you are employed to care for. It is easy to run out of ideas for babysitting games if you are spending a lot of time together. Let us enlighten you with a few games that you can play with the children, that will not only help to kill time, but also encourage bonding and skills development.

Playing a variety of babysitting games encourages children’s creativity as well as their cognitive and emotional strength. In a world filled with technology, it is important to constantly encourage children to play games that give them a break from the buzz and also prompt more physical activity.

Use a variety of games that are age appropriate to provoke different actions and learning. Our table below indicates the different age groups and suitable games before the homework requirements really start to kick in.

6-12 Months PickupUse 3 different textured ingredients, i.e. Spaghetti, Flour and jelly. Sit the child in their high chair and give them time with each ingredient to touch and play with the texture.
Peek-a-BooLie the baby tummy down on your stomach and call his/her name and then lift the baby up to see your face
1-2 YearsHousehold drummingGrab a few pots, pans and buckets and play songs for the toddler encouraging them to drum to the beat. Encourage them to dance with you as well.
Nursery RhymesSing basic Nursery Rhymes like Baa Baa Black Sheep and I hear Thunder for the child. This is a fun way to teach music, rhyme, and language.
3-5 YearsVerbal Scavenger huntList 3 or 4 items in the room that you are in for the child to find – only list the items once to encourage their listening skills.
BlocksBuild different scenarios with different blocks. For example, a bridge for their cars, or a house and farm to stimulate their imagination.
Sound identificationBlindfold the child and use familiar household items to make a sound and let the child identify it.
6-10 YearsStorybuildingBuild a collective story by taking turns to add onto a sentence onto another. Each person needs to start at the beginning and recite the previous additions.
Star chartCreate a skills chart for the child depending on their level. When they achieve a skill, they get to add a star for themselves but remind them what it is for. I.e. Listening and memory.
Board gamesPlaying various board games will develop many life skills for the child including patience (Waiting for their turn), Strategic thinking (Their next move) and negotiation (Making deals for resources)

When planning your babysitting games, it is important to engage with the children on practical levels with household items to ensure that they are challenged in a useful manner.

By Fab Au Pair.