I'd definitely talk to the girl, and be very clear and firm at all times. The only way she will know what is and isn't appropriate for your family is for you to tell her. If she continued to talk down to the children, tease the children, or try to "teach" the children, I'd find another mother's helper.
the girl is only 11, and it sounds like she probably is acting just like her mom, yk? i bet her mom does the same thing with "please" and i bet her mom told her that she "knew SO much" at the age of 5...... and that homeschool isn't "real school", etc. i would talk to the girl, but at her age i think she won't fully understand how differnt your views are. but that's just my opinion. just really continue to monitor things. as for math, your dd probably knows LOTS of math, but she just didn't know what to call it. if you gave her an apple and her brother an apple and said, "how may apples do you have together?" she'd probably tell you two, which is addition. she probably can count her baby dolls or butterflys too, etc.
this is just what i would do, but i wouldn't say anything about school directly to her unless she speaks out inappropriately of course. i would just openly talk about all of the wonderful things you & your kids do together and how much you all enjoy homeschooling. all of the neighborhood kids here want me to homeschool them!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> whenever they come over, i make a point to pull out our crafts and different games they can play. plus we do a lot of crafts for school, and they are hanging all over my house -- so the kids are always like, WOW, what's that! even my nieces beg their mom to homeschool them, so they can learn like gracie (my dd). if i were you, i'd leave activities out for the babysitter and kids to do, and show her how learning can be fun (and should be!). this will give them fun activities to play, and will help diminsh her preconceptions about homeschooling. anyway - that's what i do here - and it works fabulous without ever having any debate with anyone i know....including the neighborhood children.<br><br>
as for please, i would explain to her that the tone of your child asking is more important to you than a magic word. let her know that if your son ask for a cookie and doesn't demand one, that he IS using manners, yk?
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>annabanana</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9070418"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">i might need to her anyway, because she doesn't actively include my 2 year old, who is a bit depressed over it, as he used to be so excited about her coming, but now avoids her. and this also means that because she is not actively including him, he wants to be with me, and then i pay her to play with DD, while i play with DS. and where is my personal time, then? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"></div>
honestly, i am basing this comment only on what you've shared....but it doesn't sound like she is a great fit for you. i know you can't find the perfect mother's helper, but if your 2 year old avoids her and is still with you....it seems silly to pay her to come, yk? are you part of a homeschool group? maybe an older homeschool kid could come help you? when i lived in CA, i had a 12 year old boy come over and watch my kids. he was homeschooled & he was the coolest kid ever. he played with my children, and they loved him dearly! maybe you could investigate other options?? is that a possibility?
<< i'm not sure how to talk to her politely without sounding totally weird.>><br><br>
She is your employ and she needs more guidence in how to do her job. Think of her as your employ and what her job functions are should make this simplier.<br><br>
I think that phrasing things "I would prefer if you ...." could give you let you tell her want you want to without sounding harsh.<br><br>
I would also discuss the saying please issue and explain exactly how you want her to handle that. She is just doing what she thinks she is supposed to, and she doesn't currently understand how you want this handled. Different parents handle this differently, so she need to know how YOU handle it.<br><br>
I think the most important part it is get totally clear in your own head about what you want/don't want from her, and then let her know. For example, on the homeschooling issue I wouldn't be comfortable with a sitter saying the things that she said, but you said you don't mind. You have to decide how you really feel about it before you can do anything about it.
but it's not like comparing gymnastics to tennis imo. it sounds like your mother's helper was planting the thought in your dd's mind that she is missing out on school and friends and fun and real learning. for this young girl to talk to her about school and how great it is seems unfair to a small child imo, and in your shoes i would step in and gently say something if it happens again. i know all of our kids will encounter these types of conversations, but you're paying this girl so you have every right to speak up. i'd wait & see if it happens again though. if it was an isolated incident, then it probably isn't worth mentioning. same with the "please" - see if it occurs again and then speak up if needed. also, before she arrives, you and dd come up with activities that everyone (including your ds) can enjoy. when the babysitter gets there, you can say to your dd, "lilly, be sure to include your brother jack in the games. he's really looking forward to spending time with X too". (<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> but insert their real names!). by reminding your dd in front of the babysitter to include ds is kinda my chicken's way out advice<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> . this will indirectly tell the babysitter she needs to play with your son too, but you don't need to have an awkward talk about it.
Check out <a href="http://www.livingmath.net" target="_blank">www.livingmath.net</a>. Math is NOT just numbers, counting, etc. It's a way of seeing patterns and making sense of the many, many MANY patterns that exist in nature.<br><br>
I'd sit the mother's helper down and have a serious talk with her. Not a "lecture" but a discussion... she's 12.5, right? She is capable of explaining herself and why she's doing what she's doing (she *must* think she's doing the "right thing"... probably how she's treated at home) and she's capable of hearing you explain in a non-patronizing way why you want things done differently. She can choose to tow the line your way in your house or she can choose to leave.<br><br>
Either way, your way in your house. That's the rule. (well, that's MY rule LOL!)<br><br>
We have a mother's helper (who is fairly new to us) who is raised in an uber-religious home. We are atheists. I explained to her that her insistence on saying "grace" before my children were allowed to eat was totally unacceptable and explained to her that we simply expect her to respect our beliefs in our home the way *her* beliefs are respected in her home. End of discussion. She chose to accept that we don't believe as she does, but we don't require her to accept our beliefs, only to respect them in OUR home.<br><br>
If she had chosen to insist on forcing her beliefs on our family, she would have been fired. Period.
Could you harness her enthusiam and at the same time direct her.<br>
For example you could say that your child wants to learn about butterflies so you are going to do some butterfly crafts, make a butterfly house, send paper butterflies south to Mexico w Journey South, read books about butterflies, do a butterfly puzzle, watch a dvd, and ask for her help to do those things with your children while she is playing with them?<br><br>
In the course of going over that, you could talk about how you think learning in a hands on way is the best option for your kids and that you choose homeschooling to facilitate that.<br><br>
you need to "direct" her not "talk" to her. with the situation of making your son beg like a dog for a cookie...i would intervene! we had a "bad babysitter" situation who actually yanked a toy from my son and set him into tears and did this in front of me for...not using his indoor voice and saying in too loud tone "911 central dispatch"...i thought was fine and appropriate she did not...i think she was trying to impress me....we never had her come back...this was one of the reasons!<br><br>
give her projects she can do with your children that are very schooly like directing an art project or reading to them or fingerplays etc etc. you could politely tell her that you don't want her to bother with working on manners in the short time she is their....just be their friend and occupy them.
Keep in mind the child is *11*-- not much life experience there. lol She may be your 'empolyee' but she's probably not making a living wage, or at least nowhere near what you would pay an adult.<br><br>
Whatever you say to her, make sure you keep in mind that she is working for peanuts, and that she is a *child*. Think about how you would like an adult to speak with a child of yours. I know 11 seems really old to those with only toddlers...but 11 isn't old at all. So be gentle. If you want a 'professional'--someone with more wordly advice, you may have to pay, yk?<br><br>
And micromaniging every word...well, that never works out. If every word matters, you have to be the person offering the words. Nobody is ever going to be as good as you, kwim? Not that kids die if every word spoken isn't perfect...but understand perfect words will ever only be spoken by you. It doesn't make you wrong... but it does make you a poor candidate for inexpensive help. And ther eis nothing wrong with that. Kids seem to manage even if others are imperfect, but you don't have to pay for it.
Well, 12, that makes all the difference. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
But why not have a gentle chat with her? Sometimes you get what you pay for. You may need someone older, or someone with more expereince. She's 12, and you cannot expect her to be you. You have life expereince and you're reading MDC.<br><br>
If she doesn't respond to a little gentle direction, you may need to find someone else. I don't think it's fair to hire asomeone of any age and then expect them to read your mind. Even adult caregivers would need to be in on the practical matters of your family life.<br><br>
If you need specific things to say-- Sarah, we don't require the children to say please or thank you. They can eat whatever they need to eat without asking for it. We are more interested in tone, rather than actual words like please and thank you. " You can smile and gently laugh, "He's not a puppy, (even if he runs around like one sometimes) so no begging". You can say this in a playful tone. Hopefully she will get it. If not, you'll have to flat out tell her not to play that particular game with your children.<br><br>
And: "We aren't going to send the children to school. We think learning happens when the children play naturally. I don't want them to get the idea that learning only happens when raise your hand" Again, tone is everything. Be conversational, friendly...not condeming. You can even smile- "I know our family does things a bit differently. We're all learning together as we go along". Aske her if she would like to read something about how you do things. I wouldn't send her to a website, but I might print out something. I started reading Mothering at a very young age, and it stuck.<br><br>
As for the math sheets...is she giving them math sheets? I know some RU kid who have liked that. If it's not forced on them, they can have fun with it. Was it Dar who said that her dd loved this when she was little?<br><br>
The other thing you can do is decide in advance what she will do with them. "Please read as many chapters of this book as they like" HAve her push them on the swings, and watch them in the yard. If you play bard games, tell her how you play them. Have playdough ready (telling her outright that they don't have to make anything, and she shouldn't make anything for them. Let them roll and cut however they are. Explain you don't want someone else to guide the play). Have cutting and rolling implements available, a garlic press etc.