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Interviewing nannys for shy children.

7 replies

Millarkie · 10/03/2007 19:32

We interviewed our first applicant for our nanny job today. She seemed fine on paper and answered our questions about her views on activities, diet, discipline etc well. She is also happy with the unusual hours we require, and is very local, and happy to drive a massive nanny car, so all well and good except..
I always thought that I would choose a nanny on the way they interacting with the children and the children did not talk, play with or look at the nanny once during the two hours we spent together.
My kids are both v shy but dh believes that the right nanny would be able to make them feel settled with him/her within this time. I can decide if it was a lack of experience/effort on the side of the nanny or whether my kids are just too tough to crack.
Has anyone had a similar situation? At the moment I am tempted to try for a second interview rather than give up.

OP posts:
sunnyjim · 10/03/2007 21:46

I'd agree with your Dh that an experience childcarer shoudl be able to get even the shyest child to say hello, or join in an age appropriate game or reading.

But was she talking to you the whole time? or did you leave her to interact with the children alone?

Millarkie · 10/03/2007 21:50

Didn't leave her alone with children - but there were particular times when the children went off to do something and she hung back to talk to dh or me (whilst t'other parent went after kids). She did mention to both me and dh that she was keeping back to let the kids relax because it was obvious they were shy, but dh feels that if she had made more of an effort, or played some silly games with them they would have played with her.
We have got another couple to interview (not so good on paper though), so we could just see how the kids interact with the next applicant.

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nannynick · 10/03/2007 23:52

agree with your DH, in two hours I would expect a nanny to interact with the children, regardless of how shy they are.

I would see how other interviews go, then call this applicant back for second interview if you still feel they are in the running.

When choosing a nanny, both you, DH and your children all need to be happy with the person you have selected.
How old are the children?

Skribble · 11/03/2007 00:24

I am usualy slower to interact with kids, I like to give them time to get used to me and approach me if they want, I know other people are more forward and proactive and get good results that way, I find my way works for me.

But... 2 hours is plenty time for some sort of interaction, and although I don't pounce on kids I will chat to them or coo over them a bit. Perhaps she did sense their shyness and didn't want to run the risk of ending up having the two of them howling the whole time. I would try a second interview and hope both parties come out of their shells a bit.

NannyL · 11/03/2007 00:51

I agree with the second interview suggestion.

also (no offence intended) as she was coming for an INTERVIEW WHY should she be expected to 'run after' the children? especially when both parents are present?

i think during a second interview you could ask her (in advance) if she would mind spending half an hour alone with the children? to play with etc? When parenst are away (and i mean completely out of ear shot, not just upstairs etc) children then realise they are gone and behave COMPLETELY differently anyway!

Millarkie · 11/03/2007 10:14

Thanks for all replies.

I'm talking dh into the second interview idea

NannyL - think I phrased it badly - I was not expecting her to run around after the kids - but to show an interest in whatever they were finding interesting (sort of - 'oh you've got a puzzle - what's that picture of?' rather than standing several metres away with dh, whilst I walked over to see what they were up to). That's the way I try to win the trust of children - she didn't even say hello to them when they were introduced. Having said that, I had told her before we met that they were shy, and she did say that she was purposely giving them space.

OP posts:
Millarkie · 11/03/2007 10:18

Oh, and kids are 5 and 3yrs.

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