38 Ways to Entertain Your Babysitter


48 pages
ISBN 1-55037-794-9
DDC j793





Illustrations by Stephen MacEachern
Reviewed by Anne Hutchings

Anne Hutchings, a former elementary-school teacher-librarian with the
Durham Board of Education, is an educational consultant.


Parents and caregivers know all too well how quickly kids become bored
during vacation times. For those wondering just how to keep their young
charges amused, at least temporarily, this book may be the perfect

In her introduction, Dette Hunter comments that reading is the best way
to avoid boredom. Thus, 38 Ways To Entertain Your Babysitter is first of
all a story featuring Leo, his sister Daisy, Hubble the dog, and Helen
(aka Halley) the babysitter. Somewhat predictably, the story
“revolves” around space. Similarly, many of the chapters and many of
the activity and craft ideas contained therein are space-themed.
Examples include magic moon spinners, cosmic colour bursts, a space
smoothie, and a rocketship flip book. A list of materials needed for
each craft/activity is followed by clear, detailed, and often
illustrated directions. Fortunately, most of the required items are
readily available in most households. For those that aren’t, the
“Tips” section offers sources and/or substitutions that frequently
expand on or enhance the project.

Recipes for snacks and treats are easy, fun to make, and nutritious.
Banana “Crunchy Monkeys,” “Solar System Salad,” and “Maple
Leaf Melt” are examples. The issue of safety is addressed: it is noted
that any use of a microwave oven must be supervised by an adult.

Hunter includes little snippets of information from time to time,
adding interesting and informative details (e.g., the Hubble Space
Telescope, Tranquility Base). Stephen MacEachern’s colourful,
cartoonlike illustrations are “out of this world,” adding to the fun
and enjoyment.

38 Ways To Entertain Your Babysitter will amuse and entertain
junior-grade readers, not just with its title, but with its wealth of
“really neat” (in more ways than one, it is to be hoped) ideas.
Highly recommended.


Hunter, Dette., “38 Ways to Entertain Your Babysitter,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed April 17, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/31535.