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Future Babysitters Train Up In Safety Program



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In the length of an average school day on August 9, prospective babysitters led by instructor Terrance Burroughs learned critical skills and earned certifications to boot during the Child & Babysitting Safety Program.

The class, offered by Parks & Recreation and assembled by Life Safe Services, included hands-on experience paired with interactive videos, as well as CPR and first aid training.

Participants seemed excited to respond to the content, which gamified the learning.

“Most are inexperienced,” said Burroughs. “You may have one or two who babysat for family members or friends of family, but no real experience so they’re just eager to learn.”

In a game called “Hazard Hunt,” Burroughs showed the class a video of an average home, and asked his students to identify features that were possibly hazardous to children room-by-room.

Nearly every hand shot in the air at each turn. Participants keenly spotted a lack of outlet covers and baby rails, and found ordinary objects that could turn deadly when placed in the way of a child.

Burroughs asked his class to brainstorm how to make the spaces safer for children. Along with abundant solutions, participants lent their criticism of the very messy rooms.

Cleanliness and safety were a continuous emphasis in the program, tenets which seemed readily adopted and applied by participants during hands-on exercises.

During these portions, students were taught how to swaddle and change babies, as well as how to feed young children safely and appropriately depending on age.

The class seemed excited to explore the baby doll kits to apply their knowledge, smiling during even the diapering segment of the class.

Burroughs confirmed working with the baby dolls is usually the kids’ favorite part of the day, along with the CPR and first aid training that follows.

“We play music so they can get along with the beat, and they have a good time,” said Burroughs, referring to the rhythmic chest compressions of the rescue exercise.

According to Burroughs, in the first aid portion, participants learn how to bandage wounds, administer epinephrine during an allergy attack, manage asthma attacks, and deal with seizures.

He said the CPR program included child and infant CPR, how to handle choking, and emergency rescue breathing.

“It’s a lot in a short period of time, so we do the best we can,” said Burroughs, a former firefighter and EMT in New Haven.

Burroughs, who has been teaching the program for around fifteen years, expressed that the Newtown group was a particularly good class.

“It feels like you really did something, or you made a difference,” Burroughs said, referencing the class’s enthusiastic participation.

Following the day, each future babysitter received a card detailing their completion of the course.

Reporter Noelle Veillette can be reached at noelle@thebee.com.

Faye Corcoran practices the diapering skills she learned in the Child & Babysitting Safety Program offered by Parks and Recreation. —Bee Photo, Veillette
Instructor Terrance Burroughs presents volunteer and participant Summer Chaljub as she demonstrates how to properly feed a baby. — Bee photo, Veillette
Burroughs engages the class in a discussion about changing table safety. —Bee photo, Veillette
The class, as pictured, demonstrated a high rate of participation with most hands raised at nearly every prompt. —Bee photo, Veillette
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1 comment
  1. janeivans13 says:

    It’s inspiring to see young people taking proactive steps to learn crucial skills like CPR and first aid through programs like the Child & Babysitting Safety Program. Instructor Terrance Burroughs’ interactive approach, including games like “Hazard Hunt,” not only engages participants but also reinforces important safety principles. It’s heartening to know that these future babysitters are enthusiastic about making spaces safer for children and are eager to apply their knowledge in hands-on exercises, such as swaddling and feeding. Burroughs’ dedication to teaching these skills shines through, and it’s clear that his efforts are making a positive impact on the community. I’m on maternity leave at the moment, but I’m starting to looking for a babysitter and I think that it’s a mandatory requirement for them to go through such training. I would also like to know your opinion regarding contracts with babysitters, are they required? I mean, should we immediately make a contract to outline ban of smoking, substances, alcohol?

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