Daily Checklists & Logs: Two examples

by cv harquail on April 1, 2011

A while back I asked if any of you had forms, checklists, or other organizing tools that you’d like to share with AuPairMom readers… and several of you (who are better organized that I) sent some in. Just a few days ago, I got a request from Talliecat:

201104011734.jpgMy friend has a very… shall we say “lame duck”? au pair. She could use some kind of daily checklist. She is desperate.. any help is appreciated.

Lucky for your friend and her sanity, we have two different kinds of daily sheets to share. They both download as MSWord documents.

SavvyHostDad sent this Au Pair Daily Log Page, which is a full page per day.

The Daily log is just to help us communicate with AP each day…and for AP to communicate with us.

We came up with this after realizing what kinds of information we had to keep asking for, over and over. Often, on busy days we didn’t have time to really give instructions, or to get updates from AP at the end of the day when she had a class. Plus we would get home at the end of the day and be out of milk, bread, etc. So having this form helped to prompt both us and our Au Pair to include important information.

We print it out on one sheet of paper, so that parents fill out the front half [leave lunch instructions, medicine to give, etc., while the AP leaves notes on the back.

And, ShouldBeWorking sent us this Au Pair Log Page for APM.doc.  This one is more compact, with three days on a page.

I hope they’ll be helpful!

image: Lila on a Messy Desk from lavocado@sbcglobal.net
I just switched browsers to Chrome, and I haven’t loaded it up with enough ways to clip screenshots… or I’d have done that for you here. Getting back on the learning curve. :-)


Calif Mom April 1, 2011 at 10:22 pm

These are BRILLIANT. Thank you, organized parents, for sharing! Very adaptable formats. Very useful concepts, too. I haven’t done anything remotely close to this since I had my first newborn, but I see the utility for grade school kids. No more “Gee, I don’t know if she practiced” non-answers. Love it!

I would have a hard time characterizing moods, though. They can be as fleeting as rainbows… I guess you could document the afternoon’s trend, so the parents know what they need to brace themselves for, and mark down a little “YMMV” on those roller coaster days. :-)

HM Pippa April 1, 2011 at 10:46 pm

Thanks for these! I was fresh out of daily log sheets so I revamped mine this afternoon based on these two. My previous logs sheets had a big, intimidating blank space for a the AP to write all those details. Great for practicing written English, and telling fairy tales, but didn’t always record the information I cared about. A couple fields I added are “TV/Video/Computer time,” and I replaced special requests with “Did anything run out or break.”

The new log sheet is more like those cool Fill-In-The-Blank stationery pads I loved as a kid. With the narrative form, AP often didn’t find time or inspiration to write anything. This should help her spend less time providing me with more of the information I really care about.

Very helpful!

NJ Host Mom April 2, 2011 at 6:20 am

The second sheet is not for three days, just one day with multiple children. Thanks for sharing!

Should be working April 2, 2011 at 6:39 am

FYI, the second AP log sheet, which I submitted, didn’t look quite right when I downloaded it here, but that formatting translation issue might not be a problem for all of you. It has a happy face and a sad face to choose from, not a happy face and then a square.

Thanks CV.

talliecat April 2, 2011 at 9:48 am

Thanks so much for sharing these…. I think I am going to modify the first sheet and make it two sided and bring to Kinkos to make into a spiral bound notebook.

Seasoned Host Mom April 2, 2011 at 4:46 pm


Thank you SO-O-O much for providing these! They are fantastic, and I will definitely use them with our somewhat quiet AP. I think she’ll be a little more motivated to write things down than to talk about them every day–and I love, love, love the idea of a space to write in groceries that have run out, things that have broken, etc.

former MI aupair April 4, 2011 at 9:09 am

mh these log-pages kinda got me thinking…. I always TALKED about those things when my Hostmom got home from work. Don’t you guys have those conversations with your AP? Doesn’t it help to get a quiet AP, or maybe even an AP with weak english skills to talk?
I like the idea of having something like a check-list that the AP gets in the morning. I found those almost every morningg sitting on the kitchen-counter. They had tasks and a quick not saying stuff like “Have a great day…” on it.
…but writing down things that happend over the day? I don’t know.
Please don’t get me wrong…but I’d definitly prefer to talk about these things than writing them down.

Busy Mom April 4, 2011 at 7:53 pm

For us, with 3 kids including a tween and a teen, the daily log is a tool to remind our au pair of what to remind the kids about. A chat at the end of the day doesn’t accomplish this.

Ours is a single page per week in grid format with a few key questions such as:

Did X practice instrument?
Did Y practice typing?
How did Y behave?

Our house is much like HM Pippa’s, where our au pair is sometimes headed straight out after we get home. Plus, DH often gets home before me and is not as effective at debriefing with our APs.

HM Pippa April 4, 2011 at 12:07 pm

I agree that talking is the first, best way to get the information, but there are many times when a written log is needed. For example, there are many times that our AP walks out the door (to go to yoga, or to English class, or to see the boyfriend) as we walk in. Or when AP disappears to her room and I don’t want to disturb her off-duty time with these questions. Or when I forget to ask (these questions also help me remember what I need to know). Or when AP forgets to tell. Or when we start talking about (the weather, the bus schedule,…), and I never do figure out (if homework was completed or when and what the kids last ate). Or when the peanut butter runs out in the morning, and AP doesn’t remember it by the evening. It also helps to me to recognize when my darling 2 year old has been eating mac and cheese for lunch every day for two weeks.

In the best case, the log sheet is an aid to conversation with the au pair. In the busiest case, it is a substitute for a conversation that doesn’t have time to happen.

Taking a Computer Lunch April 4, 2011 at 10:53 pm

One of the first things I ask when I get home, is how the AP’s day went (because I don’t have toddlers and she has several hours to herself while the kids are in school). I have found that if I stop and slow down, my AP does too. We get in the rhythm of having a quiet moment when we greet each other and then I ask after the kids. Because The Camel’s communication is basic, I depend on my AP to let me know how she is. And I depend on her to tell me how things are going with my typical child, who may not reveal all.

tabinfl April 8, 2011 at 4:09 pm

These are GREAT, thanks! We used to do daily logs with our nanny when my kids were infants, but those have since fallen by the wayside — I’m not as interested in the details of my kids’ poop anymore :-).

I never would have thought to just update the items on the log sheet, and I do so much better having a little “prompt” for conversation.

HRHM April 11, 2011 at 2:53 pm

I think there are also situations where a HM is “talked out” ie she has asked for certain things to be done or has asked the same questions so many times that she is resentful for having to do it AGAIN. Or the AP may take a testy tone because she feels nagged or criticized for being asked/told for the umpteenth time. This leaves a paper reminder that relieves the HM from having to nag and allows the AP to leave a neutral response (or at least roll her eyes and sigh while the HM is not present to have to see it!) LOL

Felicia Schlafer May 22, 2011 at 12:17 am

I am about to be a Host Family for the first time, and I am just now starting my Family Notebook. I am starting with a “time sheet”. Can anyone share with me what they use? I know this site has tons of stuff, and I do plan to peruse. So what I am asking for may be on this site. Thanks so much for any help.

Comments on this entry are closed.