Baby sitting — for many adolescents and young teens, it is their first “official” job. At first glance, the prospect of playing with kids and giving them a juice box and some Goldfish crackers may seem like easy money; however, inexperienced sitters inevitably realize there is a lot more to their new occupation. For example, what if there is a medical emergency? How do you handle a crying toddler? How do you meet employers and set a fair wage?
The Safe Sitter Program at Lourdes University answers these questions and more. Designed for boys and girls ages 11-13, the program offers medically-oriented instruction paired with hands-on training.
“This program is special, as it is held at the Lourdes University College of Nursing learning laboratory,” said Emily Rozek, MSN, RN-BC, CCRN-K, assistant professor and program director of undergraduate nursing studies. “In addition to the babysitter course, we will also cover some fun medical and nursing activities such as donning and doffing of personal protective equipment and safety mobility devices, in addition to using some high fidelity mannequins. e have mannequins who throw up, breathe, blink, talk and bleed. Pretty exciting stuff,” she added.
“This program is perfect for middle school age boys and girls, and I stress the boys,” Rozek said with a laugh. “Every child needs to know these skills, even if they never plan on babysitting.”
Rozek speaks from experience. As a mother of tweens, she knows the importance of teaching these lessons to her own family.
“As a working mom of middle schoolers, their safety when home alone was concerning. Having them trained on basic first aid and choking safety were so important to me. I also see these skills when out riding bikes or in the school lunchroom. Every child should be trained in these skills.”
Here are just a few skills that participants will learn in the program:
- Indoor & Outdoor Safety
- Online Safety
- Personal Safety
- Handling Emergencies
- Injury Prevention
- First Aid and Injury Management
- Choking Rescue
- CPR (optional)
- Child Development
- Childcare Duties
- Behavior Management
- Job Screening
- Setting a Wage
- Canceling Jobs
- Meeting Employers
Rozek noted that many of these skills will carry over into future careers as well.
“My daughter and son would like to start babysitting, and the life skills such as interviewing and being a responsible employee were very important,” Rosek said. She hopes that this early training will give students exposure to future careers in nursing and other medical-related fields of study.
“I think kids today need to start thinking of career goals in middle school. This camp allows boys and girls to experience middle skills in a nursing education laboratory to see if this could potentially develop a career passion for them,” she said.
Classes are held at Lourdes University Nursing Lab from 9am to 3:30pm. A $55 fee covers the course as well as a meal on campus.
“There is an awesome lunch at the University cafeteria buffet. I think that my middle schoolers favorite part of campus is the all-you-can-eat ice cream,” Rozek noted.
Though this summer’s classes have filled, you can follow Lourdes on Facebook for the latest news on upcoming classes.