Session 1: Make playdough, which can entertain young folks for hours. It’s also nice for older kids to see that a cherished toy can be homemade! Add your choice of food coloring and package in airtight containers for each Babysitting Bag. Here’s my favorite recipe:
- 1 cup (110 grams) flour
- 1/4 cup (68 grams) salt
- 2 Tablespoons (20 grams) cream of tartar
Combine in a pan. In a separate bowl, combine:
- 1 cup (235 milliliters) water
- 2 teaspoons (10 milliliters) food coloring
- 1 Tablespoon (13 grams) oil
Add to the above. Cook and stir constantly for 3-5 minutes. When the clay forms a ball in the center of the pan, knead on lightly floured surface with rubber gloves on (it will be hot). Keeps 1-2 months.
Session 2: Make a file folder game. Color, cut out and laminate the pieces. Ideas can be found here: filefolderfun.com
Session 3: Make a list of favorite activity songs like “Do As I’m Doing” (CS 276) and “If You’re Happy [And You Know It] (CS 266). Learn a new active song from that section of the Children’s Songbook to teach younger children. You might want to make some simple rhythm instruments: rhythmweb.com/homemade
Session 4: Make or decorate a simple fabric bag with handles to hold these things plus crayons, coloring sheets, and other simple age-appropriate activities.
Session 5: Talk about basic babysitting skills, first aid, when to summon help, etc.
Learning about caring for younger children is a valuable skill on a child’s way to learning how to be a responsible, loving, nurturing father or mother. It also is a self-esteem builder for a child to realize that they too can serve others.