Things I Learned from The Baby-Sitters Club

What can’t you learn from books?

The Baby-Sitters Club — don’t tell me you haven’t heard of them! Kristy, Claudia, Stacey, Mary Anne, Dawn, Mallory and Jessi: seven girls who revolutionized the world of baby-sitting (dial one number, and reach seven experienced sitters), one client at a time. They tackled walking-disaster children, local mysteries, and boys, all while finding time to have many “Great Ideas,” which changed the face of baby-sitting forever.

The girls from Ann M. Martin’s Baby-Sitters Club have provided girls entertainment and life lessons for 25 years. Here’s some things I’ve learned from all of them and things you can, too!

1. Share your ‘Great Ideas’, and be ready to admit they can be wrong.

Of the seven girls in the Baby-Sitters’ Club, Kristy Thomas practically has a patent on “Great Ideas”. After all, it was her original idea which led to the formation of the club. What we can learn from Kristy is that sharing your ideas can sometimes make them a reality – and if you think the idea is fantastic, be prepared to put in the hard work and the effort to make it a success! Of course, Kristy-types need to remember that they didn’t create “Great Ideas”, and occasionally other people do have them–like the time Jessi suggested hosting a Mini-Olympics for all the kids they baby-sit, in #55 Jessi’s Gold Medal. The Baby-Sitters’ Club is all about team work and collaboration guys. On the flip side, you also need to be ready to admit defeat, no matter how much you loved your idea–everyone remember Kristy’s “Great Idea” of entering a giant float in that baby parade?

2. Keep Calm and Carry On.

The girls of the Baby-Sitters Club can sometimes get themselves into a few scary situations–like the time serial pest Alan Gray was calling up the girls while on sitting jobs to scare the living daylights out of them in Claudia and the Phantom Phone Calls, or in Mary Anne saves the Day when Mary Anne was sitting for Jenny Prezzioso and she ran a fever of 104 degrees, and had to be taken to hospital. Despite the panic that these sorts of situations can throw you into, the girls in the BSC always try to stay calm and be prepared. If you ever have to run off a sitting charge to the hospital, don’t forget to lock the door and page the parents to let them know what has happened. If someone is making creepy phantom phone calls, let the police know! I suppose another one of their mottos would have to be “BE PREPARED”.

3. Fashion should be an expression of your true personality.

Ann M. Martin and her dedicated team of Ghost Writers must have really loved their fashion. Why else would we often get a detailed description of what each of the girls was wearing at any given time? Whether you are California Casual like Dawn, or into telephone cord belts, or large hand-painted men’s shirts like Claudia, fashion is all about expressing who you are inside and out. Whenever any of the girls tried to change their appearance into something they weren’t, (like the time Mallory made herself over into a California Girl in Super Special #5, California Girls!) there was always the message that we should dress to represent ourselves, not what we think we should be dressing like or what everyone wants us to dress like – a lesson that the girls definitely learned after they got upset with Mary Anne for cutting her hair in Mary Anne’s Makeover.

4. Pick your crushes carefully.

Poor Stacey McGill–as sophisticated and fashionable as she is always reminding us she is, you have to admit that apart from Robert (who was the most awesome boyfriend anyone had in this series, am I right?), she has pretty bad taste in men. Stacey is the ‘boy crazy’ member of the club, and always picks really inappropriate older boys to fall in love with…which might not be a problem in a 20 something’s life, but it is if you are 13. Who can forget lifeguard Scott, from when Stacey and Mary Anne have their first stint as mother’s helpers at the Pike’s Sea City holiday in Boy-Crazy Stacey? Scott has her (and a plethora of other girls) trotting up and down the beach on trips to find cold sodas. Stacey refuses to see him for the player that he is, until she sees him in the middle of a romantic date, and her heart is broken. The poor thing doesn’t learn her lesson though, and later in the series falls in love with her substitute math teacher, Mr Wesley Ellenburg (who looks like a young and hot Tom Cruise). She thinks he feels the same and ends up leaving him an awkward love note. Of course he doesn’t feel the same way, and Stacey is left heartbroken. You can never tell who you are going to fall for, but please learn from Stacey’s mistakes. Try to distinguish between friendly behaviour, and someone with a genuine interest in you and your life.

What life lessons have you learned from the BSC?


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