What to Know About Hiring a Multilingual Babysitter

By Alicia Geigel on May 14, 2022

Babysitters play a pivotal role in shaping and influencing the minds of children. Hiring the best babysitter can give your child a comfortable person to be around in your absence, and also expose them to new perspectives, cultures, and even languages. While it may not be a prioritized quality on your checklist for a babysitter, there are several benefits to having a multilingual babysitter to look after your children.

Diving into hiring a multilingual babysitter may be uncharted territory for you. In this process, you may consider if doing so is the right way to expose your child to a new language if you even want to do that at all. If you are leaning toward wanting your child to learn another language, having a multilingual babysitter is a great start. Here is all you need to know about doing so and how you can be involved during the process.

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Image via Pexels

What is a Multilingual Babysitter?

Similar to a bilingual babysitter, a multilingual babysitter is a person who knows multiple languages and can help teach these languages to your children. Unlike a normal babysitter, this person plays the role of both caregiver/caretaker and teacher, which makes their job more involved and in-depth.

The Hiring Process for a Multilingual Babysitter

When hiring a multilingual babysitter, the process is just slightly different than hiring a normal one, as there are more qualifications and requirements to consider for your potential candidate.

  1. Determine the Language You Are Looking For: Perhaps you want your child to learn a language connected to your culture but you don’t have the time, or maybe you simply want them to learn a language to make them well-versed in our current world. Whichever the case, determine the language you want your babysitter to know and the language you want your child to learn. You can include this on a listing or post when searching for a babysitter, to specify exactly what you are looking for.

  2. Evaluate the Traits You Are Looking For: Considering a babysitter to look after your children takes a lot of thought, especially around what specific traits and characteristics you want the potential babysitter to have. During the hiring process, evaluate what is most important to you and ensure that any potential candidates align with your belief system in terms of discipline, activity time, learning, etc. Specify your desired traits in a listing or posting to ensure the greatest transparency with future candidates, and to help you filter through your options.

  3. Do Your Own Research: You do not want your babysitter and child to be the only ones familiar with the new language. Rather, do your own research and take the time to learn some of the languages yourself. Doing so can help to normalize speaking the new language with your child, which can give them a sense of comfortability when both speaking and learning. Additionally, learning the language can show your babysitter that you are involved in the process and care enough to engage on a deeper level.

  4. Interview the Candidate: The interview process is the most important part of hiring a babysitter and can give you the greatest insight into who the candidate is and how they will approach the job. During the interview, ask them specific questions about their language(s), such as: How long have you been speaking said language? How did you learn said language? How do you plan on teaching my child said language? In addition, ask questions that are pertinent to what is important to you and raising your child, such as curfew times, activity time, eating and drinking/meals, discipline, etc.

Benefits of Hiring a Multilingual Babysitter

  1. Immersion is the Best Learning Technique: In terms of learning languages, immersion is the best technique. Rather than a traditional learning setting, where students are taught lessons in different categories, language immersion is an effective way to naturally incorporate new language vocabulary into their day-to-day routine. A blog post by Household Staffing notes, “If your child’s school doesn’t have a language immersion program or you don’t want to hire a private tutor, a bilingual nanny can speak the second language to your child in a natural way.”

  2. Exposure to New Cultures: Another great benefit to having a bilingual babysitter is exposure to new cultures. By having a bilingual babysitter, your child can experience different cultural traditions, such as foods, music, and movies, which can help to make them more well-rounded, cultured individuals.

  3. Learning a Language Does Wonders for the Brain: There is a lot of data that points to the many benefits that learning two or more languages can do for the brain. Strengthening the attention span, developing empathy, and even boosting test performances are all benefits associated with learning a language outside of your native one. According to NPR, “Young children being raised bilingual have to follow social cues to figure out which language to use with which person and in what setting.”

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Image via Pexels

Hiring a bilingual babysitter may be something outside of what you would normally consider, but doing so is not only easy, but can also have many benefits for you and your child.

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