Just How Did Nannies Get The Name "Nanny"?
Just How Did Nannies Get The Name "Nanny"?

Just how did nannies get the name of 'nanny'? Is this something that you wonder? Have you ever thought about it? Is it just something that maybe one of your kids asked you and you're not sure? If you're a nanny, you might be curious yourself, and again, the kids you care for might be curious to as they get to know you and try to figure out what role you play in their life as they try and grasp the world around them they're struggling to learn and comprehend. So let's fix that.

'Nanny' as a word is usually traced by linguists back to 1795 as a 'children's nurse'. Children in Colonial Times of North America and the Caribbean would sometimes call an adult a nanny if it was a female that wasn't their mother. Some of this may have been picked up by those studying classical languages like Greek, where the word for 'aunt' is 'nanna' or 'nana'.

A nanny is basically a person that provides childcare and other duties around the house that revolve around childcare. However, they are not maids, and they are not general housekeepers. They are not a family laundress or a personal chef. Generally speaking, a nanny's care happens inside a family structure. Over the course of history, nannies tended to be servants in big households of families that were wealthy. They would also report directly and personally to the lady of the home.

Modern nannies are like many other domestic workers, in that they might live either in or out of the home, based on their own circumstances as well as those of their employers. Many different employment agencies and domestic staffing agencies specialize in this kind of childcare.

Nannies are slightly different from other forms of childcare. A childminder or daycare might work from their own home, working as someone self-employed or even as a small business. An au pair might work as a nanny, but they're typically from another nation that comes to live with their host family. In exchange for helping with the kids, they get the chance to learn a local language and culture. A governess would be less of a childcare option and more focused on educating kids right in their own home.

Nannies often get used in lieu of daycare given how they might be more cost-effective. Many jurisdictions don't have legal requirements for nannies in terms of registration, licensing, or certification. However, families might still do background checks. They might also look for particular skills, such as bilingual abilities, CPR certification, or early childhood development coursework.

Nannies can play crucial roles for parents as much as they do the kids they watch over. Parents know their kids might need looking after 24/7, but they obviously can't do that themselves. If they work full-time, a daytime nanny can provide daycare for their kids without leaving them at a daycare where they might not get personal attention. A daily commute would also be involved.

Night-time nannies can also prove as invaluable if parents need to get a full night of sleep without the kids bothering them, which often happens to new parents. Weekend nannies can also help free up time for parents to still get some time to themselves or have some semblance of a social life.

Proper placement is critical when it comes to hiring a nanny. That's where domestic staffing agencies come in. They will properly screen each nanny candidate and ensure the right nanny gets paired with the right family. There are too many horror stories out there about how caregivers ended up abusing the children in their care. So if you're looking to hire a nanny, be sure to hire through a domestic staffing agency who works with qualified nannies.

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