Employed by private families across the United States of America, a nanny provides child care for children, typically from birth until age 12. In addition to serving as a babysitter, these professionals perform a variety of tasks that contribute to the physical, emotional and mental development of their charges. While there are not any formal educational requirements to obtain employment in this field, the most sought after nannies possess college degrees within early childhood development, education or a related field of study. The median annual income earned by the approximately 1.3 million individuals working in this occupation in 2008 was $18,970.
When trusting their children with a nanny, parents are putting a great deal of responsibility on these professionals. The most important is the welfare of the child or children. Children are often quite energetic and rambunctious. It is not uncommon for them to injure themselves, as they fall and bump into objects quite regularly. A nanny must be quick-thinking in these instances. She must perform first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) as necessary, calling upon the proper assistance, such as a doctor, when warranted by the situation.
More than simply monitoring children when parents or guardians are unavailable to do so, a nanny also plays an important role in the physiological development of his charge. He must plan and prepare healthful meals and snacks at regularly scheduled intervals. He educates each charge within areas of social grace, such as manners (e.g. saying please and thank you) and safety (e.g. look both ways before crossing a street) as well as personal care, ensuring that each child brushes her teeth, bathes and is properly groomed. When these skills are not adhered to, discipline is often used in an effort to reinforce them.
Additionally, the nanny supplements the academic education of his charges, assisting them with homework, administering additional education assignments and quizzes as well as planning educational activities such as videos and outings to cultural institutions including museums, the theater or the symphony. The nanny maintains constant communication with parents, informing them on the development of their children, and any causes of concern that have been identified.
In addition to working and developing, it is important for children to partake in recreational activities. As such, a nanny plans and accompanies her charges on recreational outings such as to play dates, to the park, to the cinema and to extracurricular activities such as Little League Baseball games.
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