Dealing with other people’s children is always a tricky one.

 

Some parents can be extremely protective of their little ones, and they are the ones you'll be answering to if you even so much as look at their child the wrong way. 

 

Children are beautiful and full of fun and adventure... but there’s nothing worse than when one little boy or girl - who is not yours - steps out of line when in your care.  

 

 

We all have our own way of dealing with or disciplining our own kids, but doing so with someone else's is not easy. 

 

However, by taking note of the following tips you'll stop yourself from getting in any awkward situations.

 

1. Your House, your rules

So what should you do when inviting your child's friends over? Well, it might be helpful to chat to their parents beforehand and see what works for both of you.

 

It's likely you will have similar views as to what’s acceptable and unacceptable, but it's better to be safe than sorry.

 

Have a 'your house, your rules' policy and let the other parents decide if this works for them. 

 

 

2. Create boundaries

Likewise, if you are the friend, the aunt or the cousin being trusted with another person's son or daughter for the day, you are responsible for their well-being while they are in your care.

 

Be patient with them, don’t be reactive if they kick off – kids will try to push your buttons and test your patience - and set some boundaries.

 

Particularly testy kids respond well to distraction, so try to refocus them to something that’s fun for everyone, a movie, a walk in the park or a game.

 

Most parents use a naughty step or time-out as a disciplinary action and that’s fine, but make sure you check prior to using it on some else's kid. 

 

 

3. Honesty is always the best policy

At the end of the day, be honest if the youngster in your care has misbehaved and inform the parents of how you handled it. Otherwise the child will just rat you out anyway - and that is just asking for trouble. 

 

Always remember that these little people are still learning so do cut them a little slack - plus, they could be acting up because they feel uncomfortable being in a new and strange environment. 

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