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What exactly is it that nannies do - I need to know!

33 replies

clutteredup · 22/04/2007 21:08

I have a student placement nanny from our local college coming Monday's and Friday's from 9.45 till 5.15. Cool, I'm excited but when I asked what she would do the college told me,'anything you would expect a Nanny to do'. Great! It's just I haven't a clue what I would expect a nanny to do - never had one before! Can anyone advise?

OP posts:

em28677 · 22/04/2007 21:17

Hi I was a nanny for the same family for 10 years and I did everything!!! It really varies on the family some people only want nannies for the sole point of looking after the children, whereas others would expect their nanny to do all cooking, cleaning and laundry related to the children. Other families expect you to do the lot and be general dogs body forever!! If you want to leave her with thechildren but dont want to give her sole charge straight away why not try giving her a little bit of child related chores to do so she is not with them all the time. Good Luck


nannynick · 22/04/2007 21:24

As a nanny I do almost anything really.

Let me see if I can start to make a list:

Preparing meals including scrubing vegetables.
Washing up.
Putting laundry in the washing machine.
Putting laundry on the washing line.
Feeding the cat, chickens, other animals.
Running the vacuum cleaner around the house.
Getting painting things ready, clearing up the mess.
Reading stories to the children.
Playing games with the children.
Taking the children out for a walk.
Taking children to toddler group, music group, swimming etc.
Getting tykes out of the shed/garage, putting them away again.
Trying to get 4 year old to ride bike without stabilizers.
Water the plants.
Supervise getting dressed.
Changing nappies.
Giving bottle feeds.
Collecting children from school.
Helping with homework.

Is that enough to get you started?


em28677 · 22/04/2007 21:26

Nick you sound like you have had similar experiences tome I could also add Help run family business and Clean their empire of property when it comes up for rent renewal!!!


clutteredup · 22/04/2007 21:28

Thanks for the information - I'm not allowed to give her sole charge - I think for insurance reasons- but I'd also like to help her get as much experience as possible as well - I want to get the house clean tomorrow morning while DS and DD1 are at school and pre-school, DD2 is 3 months - any ideas as to what to ask her to do with her while I'm cleaning - I normally leave her under the baby gym (DD not the nanny!)and she's quite happy.

OP posts:

em28677 · 22/04/2007 21:34

Get her to help clean kids rooms or play with baby. Dont suppose she can go for a walk with the baby if not allowed sole charge or that wouldve been a good solution.


nannynick · 22/04/2007 21:35

As first day, just ask her to entertain DD3. Will give her some experience of crawling around the floor and clearing up baby sick!

em - I could add more to my list, such as plumbing in dishwasher, washing machine, getting things from the loft (did that this week), unblocking drain, but those are not typical nanny duties.


clutteredup · 22/04/2007 21:36

Sounds good to me about the kids room - what things might help her get more experience generally - DD1 comes home from pre school after lunch and then we go to toddlers with a frind's DS. Then school pick up at 3.20 for DS.

OP posts:

em28677 · 22/04/2007 21:39

Nick How many duties that a nanny ends up doing are 'nanny duties' At least I could pretend to be to weak to do getting things out of loft etc still had to bully the husband to do it though cos that was added to my list. Her husband was my 4th child!!!


nannynick · 22/04/2007 21:42

Could also bake a cake for lunch/tea. Bake bread, make playdough etc... but making dough can be such fun for children - so perhaps a better thing to do with DD1.

Going to collect from pre-school and school can be an experience... going to toddler group can be fun. The more interaction she has with children (yours and others) the better. The more involved the better as well, so at toddler group, you relax and your student deal with anything that crops up.


anteater · 22/04/2007 21:42

we have had 3 nannies and they all did things in very different ways, its up to what you want.
My advise is this tho..
Half the nannies we know in other families have ended up doing 'extra' duties with dhs..
2 went on to become new dws.. so beware!


clutteredup · 22/04/2007 21:45

DD1 still reeling a little from arrival of DD2. Not really badly but could possibly be sensitive to me fobbing her off. Any ideas on how to manage introducing new help without being seen as passing her off on someone else, but trying to get a relationship going between them?

OP posts:

clutteredup · 22/04/2007 21:47

Thanks for the warning Anteater -my DS is away while my student is coming so at least I can leave DH duties off my list!

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clutteredup · 22/04/2007 21:48

Sorry I meant my DH is away , just had my wine glass refilled and not concentrating!

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paros · 22/04/2007 21:48

anteater you know some naughty nannies . Thankgod with my male bosses once you have picked up and washed their dirty underwear the novelty wears off some what . lol


nannynick · 22/04/2007 21:49

DD1 must be 3 or 4 years old I would guess, so explain to her that due to having DD2 to care for you can't spend as much time playing games with her, so you thought it would be nice if there was someone else who came to help for a while, who would play games, who would help with arts and crafts, who would accompany you to the park, groups etc.


em28677 · 22/04/2007 21:49

Why dont you stop and get a new book or something you know your DD1 will love then get the studentsto give it to her. Never know it may work have her sit qietly looking at new toy/book and hopefully your DD will go to her herself without feeling passed off as you put it


anteater · 22/04/2007 21:51

Actually that figure is 3 nannies that got the top job, not 2!
We have 2 in dd2s class!
(my smalls are always well presented!)


clutteredup · 22/04/2007 21:53

Spot on Nick 3 and a half to be precise -could try messy art as she love that and I hate clearing it up! I'm just a bit concerned I don't want her to feel put upon as evidently a lot of nannies do and are - but at the same time obviously want her to do what she has to for her training - i guess I'm a bit clueless not even having had a cleaner before - not practised at having anyone to help!

OP posts:

clutteredup · 22/04/2007 21:54

Actually she did ask for a comic today - good idea

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em28677 · 22/04/2007 21:55

Oh God thats awful I had too many years of picking up the fathers dirty undies to think of him in any way otyher than their dad!!! Some days couldnt even look at him


GeeGee2 · 22/04/2007 22:15

I've had nannies in the past and never asked them to do laundry or ironing for the children or any housework other than loading the dishwasher etc, although I understand that this is standard 'nanny duties'.

However one thing I wish nanny colleges taught better would be simple, quick, home cooked, healthy meals using fresh ingredients.

For most of my nannies, I have had to cook meals in batches at weekends for them to defrost and they would just add vegetables.

Otherwise, everything would have been out of a jar or tin or a frozen chicken nugget.

If you could teach her a few easy meals it would help her in the future.


em28677 · 22/04/2007 22:21

Good comment GeeGee most of the nannysI know cant cook decent homecooked food and all serve up freezerpremade food, though to be fair alot of usknowhow we justdont get the time!!


nannynick · 22/04/2007 22:25

Agreed... cooking isn't taught a lot on courses. When I did my NNEB in 1998, I think we had something like and hour and a half of home economics, and very little of that was actual cooking.

So if you can get your student to help with cooking that would be great. Even just simple things - ministroni soup, home made pizza, pasta sauces including how to make a basic white sauce and cheese sauce. Fruit salad, milk shakes, real fruit ice lolly, fairy cakes and muffins, flapjacks. Perhaps even mini quiche, bread rolls, jam tarts, mini pasties (I use a potato based pastry).

As the student has been studying for a while, after all it isn't the beginning of the academic year, with luck she will have ideas of her own, plus I suspect she will have some work she will have to do as well - such as observations and maybe a project making something.


nannyj · 22/04/2007 22:27

Cooking is a good idea, it's one of the most important things a nanny needs to know how to do.


nannynick · 22/04/2007 22:27

I think I get the raw deal... no pre-made frozen stuff, just a veg box and fruit box once per week plus store cupboard supplies. I care for 3 children, two of whom are under 5, and we find the time to cook.

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