Weekly Trip to the Library

The Nanny Textbook 2003 By Anne Merchant
Book Review By Maria Lopez, Nanny, Miami, Florida

What I like best about The Nanny Textbook by Anne Merchant is that she has a nursing background and she teaches the nursing process to nannies. I have not come across another book written for nannies with the nursing approach. The book shares great information about common childhood illnesses which Best Nanny Newsletter will share with readers in short excerpts on this blog during the health care series for the next week. So, there is no better time to discuss The Nanny Textbook.

The first chapter is entitled “Keys to Making the Relationship Work.” The advice Anne Merchant shares with nannies about the parent and nanny relationship is clever and rings true.

I particularly like her ideas about housework for nannies. Many nannies resent having cleaning and housekeeping responsibilities. Anne Merchant recommends placing housekeeping responsibilities under a separate work agreement with an amount of salary apportioned for the housework duties. That way, if the nanny finds that housekeeping along with childcare responsibilities becomes too much to handle, the parents and nanny can drop those duties and that portion of salary.

Chapter three discusses the “Professional Nanny Process” which Anne Merchant developed from the “Nursing Process.” The process is to: ASSESS what is needed, PLAN how to carry out your responsibilities, IMPLEMENT the plan by writing it down, and EVALUATE the effectiveness on a regular basis.

She states that a nanny’s priorities are first and foremost the personal care of each child. Then a nanny should provide age-appropriate activities for children. Finally, when there is enough time a nanny should focus on home hygiene and home management duties.

The book primarily emphasizes the need for safety in the home and health concerns when caring for children. But it also discusses communicating effectively with parents, ethics for childcare providers, the growth and development of children, and helping children develop high self-esteem.

I like the worksheets included in the book that are helpful to both nannies and parents. Some charts and forms include: a daily log form, safety statistics, growth and development form, dosage medication chart, and a consent authorization form.

What I like least about the book is the poor grammar which requires the reader to slow down to re-read some sentences to understand their meaning. But, the author published The Child Care Textbook 2007 which should have better grammar.

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