As well as taking care of children’s basic needs, nannies also need to be masters of entertainment. Older children are better at amusing themselves alone and siblings often play happily together for a (short) while, but at some point in the day everyone requires some structured indoor or outdoor fun.
Nanny Entertainment In
When it’s cold and rainy get stuck into arts and crafts projects. Make sure you have plenty of crayons, felt tips, paper, non-toxic glue and a selection of egg cartons, loo rolls and tin foil. Painting, sculpture making and even just simple drawing tasks can keep them busy for hours. Potato printing is great fun too. You’ll need Blu-tac or magnets to display art work on the fridge and a plastic sheet and aprons to avoid any messy disasters.
Dressing up clothes are loads of fun allowing children to act out imaginary characters and even devise plays to entertain parents. Build dens out of sheets and blankets behind the sofa and host toy tea parties in them. Hide-and-seek with several children will also provide lengthy amusement.
Nanny Entertainment Out
Fresh air is essential to the well-being of children and a good nanny will insist in some form of daily outdoor activity. It may be a run around the garden, a walk in the pushchair for smaller charges or a trip to the park. Picnics are always met with great enthusiasm, especially when combined with an organised trip to a wildlife centre or adventure playground. Hook up with other nannies and their children to really make a day of it. Visits to the library, local museums and swimming pool are all activities – just be sure to have the parents’ permission beforehand.
Cooking with Nanny
Children love cooking and making a mess in the kitchen. It’s also a great thing way to learn about weights and measures with a (hopefully) edible result. Aprons and clean hands are compulsory.
Meeting other local nannies and their kids
If you’ve just arrived as a nanny in a brand new place and are short on ideas, try scouring the local small ads for nanny groups/clubs. Local newspapers, town halls, swimming pools, village halls and local shops are all good places to find out what’s happening in your part of the world.