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To think nursery is too strict

(105 Posts)
Shezow Wed 11-Sep-19 18:35:08

My little one has just started nursery this year and I’m hating it already!

I thought children go to nursery to play, run wild ect

But they are constantly been told off and told what to do and what not to? They are only 3!

Today at home time the teacher told us they’ve had a lot of telling off today as it’s still early days and when we went in the classroom to pick the kids up they looked very upset

Now I’m not one of the go-burn-the-house-down do-whatever-you-like parents But they’re still allowed to play freely

AIBU to think nursery is too strict 😩? Or is this normal?

forevercurious Wed 11-Sep-19 18:36:31

Without knowing the behaviour, why they had been told off it’s impossible to know. 20-30 preschoolers ‘running wild’ would be a nightmare but there is a difference between playing and being wild.

TeenPlusTwenties Wed 11-Sep-19 18:45:51

I would expect 3yos to have time to run around outside, and play and explore.

But I wouldn't expect them to be permitted to throw toys around, screech indoors, eat food whilst walking around, hit/pinch/scratch/kick.

So it all depends really, doesn't it?

geekaMaxima Wed 11-Sep-19 18:46:07

Is it a school nursery, OP?

In my experience, school nurseries tend to be far more "school"-like, including stricter rules, less free play, more focus on learning numbers and letters, and greater conformity in general (such as uniforms for 3 year olds).

Private nurseries vary a lot, but only in the private sector have I seen most hours in free play, fun for the sake of fun, more focus on social skills and child wellbeing, and greater tolerance of different developmental trajectories (such as a relaxed approach to potty training "she'll get there when she's ready").


RedskyLastNight Wed 11-Sep-19 18:49:26

Depends what is meant.
They need to listen to and follow instructions (e.g. put on an apron before you do painting).
They need to (e.g.) sit on the carpet and listen while an adult reads a story.

If they don't do these things they are likely to be told off. Doesn't stop nursery being mainly about play!

PinkFlowerFairy Wed 11-Sep-19 18:53:12

All that geek said. We avoided school nurseries and used a community pre school instead for all those reasons. Some have them lining up for assembly and having to sit in rows and all that.

Private school i visited was the worst with desks.

Ours had circle time for a story but would accomodate if a child was feeling fidgety. I loved pur preschool ; never once talked about having to do lots of telling off.

A teacher may only have a couple of tas whereas its smaller ratios for preschools, lots of staff to play and def a focus on learning through pkay.

Shezow Wed 11-Sep-19 18:53:33

It is a school nursery and there is no way there’s 20-30 preschoolers at one session maybe 10 max

I understand they need some rules in place and can’t have them all running wild whilst eating ect as they’d be safety issues but I still feel it’s far more stricter then I anticipated, maybe that’s how it is I just wasnt expecting it.

They are expected to go to the loo by themselves too and must be fully potty trained

They are only 3

PinkFlowerFairy Wed 11-Sep-19 18:55:05

Red sky ours didnt really focus on it as telling off but lots of explaining why it wasnt a good idea etc.

Also i think op is talking about whole class twlling off which is really not appropiate at that age as some of themnwont have been doing problem x and yet still feel told off and anyway it just ends up with kids feeling shame and fear rather than understanding.

Much prefer the approach from those who have cared for little ones!

PinkFlowerFairy Wed 11-Sep-19 18:56:05

Thought it might be a school one. A teacher will have qualified to teach primary and will have a teacher approach rather than a childcare one. Such a different focus. Id find somewhere else...

Mysterian Wed 11-Sep-19 18:58:48

"...must be fully potty trained." - Lots of nurseries say that. They shouldn't. It's like putting a sign up saying "Children with Special Educational Needs keep out!" It's not direct discrimination, but would affect children with SEN disproportionately.

ALoadOfTwaddle Wed 11-Sep-19 18:59:47

A teacher will have qualified to teach primary and will have a teacher approach rather than a childcare one.

Not so. A primary trained teacher is only qualified to teach years 1-6. A nursery teacher has been trained to teach the EYFS- different qualification.

ALoadOfTwaddle Wed 11-Sep-19 19:00:19

And by years 1-6 I mean ages 5-11.

Shezow Wed 11-Sep-19 19:01:18

@geekaMaxima private nursery sounds so much better focusing on their social skills ect that’s what I was expecting,

School nursery is just like school, I don’t want my child to be able to write he’s/hers name, I want him to play and learn in an relaxed environment

@PinkFlowerFairy your community preschool sounds awesome

PullingMySocksUp Wed 11-Sep-19 19:01:31

I’d be concerned if the children were looking upset. They should be able to control them without getting cross.

ALoadOfTwaddle Wed 11-Sep-19 19:05:07

private nursery sounds so much better focusing on their social skills ect

Depends on the individual nurseries. Private nurseries exist to make a profit and some are much better than others.

Camomila Wed 11-Sep-19 19:05:15

As its the beginning of term I'd give it a week or two to see if things settle down and then maybe look at moving them.

Lots of private nurserys have an EYT (Early Years Teacher) working with the oldest DC now, so there's a good mix of childcare and 'academic' stuff.

hormonesorDHbeingadick Wed 11-Sep-19 19:06:11

My DD has started school nursery and the staff are working hard to build up positive relationships and to help the children settle in. For the first session parents stayed and rules were explained in an age appropriate way eg “Nursery children when you hear my tambourine it means we stop and listen”.

The staff said they work with children to ensure they are all full independently using the toilet by the end of the school year. At the settling session I took DD to the toilets to show here were everything was but I didn’t do anything for her. I have made sure that over the summer she remembers to flush the toilet and wash her hands. The ratio in nursery can be as high as 1:13 and in reception will probably be 1:17 and can be 1:33. They do need to be independent.

Userzzzzz Wed 11-Sep-19 19:07:03

Personally I wouldn’t be keen on a school nursery as they do seem pretty rigid and less caring. They’re still so little at 3 and you don’t want them to be put off learning. As a contrast, mine has just moved up to the pre-school room at nursery and she’s having a lovely time. They have had talks about setting rules and being respectful but they are seeing the year as a process for achieving school readiness rather than expecting them to conform immediately.

Pomegranateseeds Wed 11-Sep-19 19:08:04

I am a primary teacher and have never heard this! Technically I qualified originally as a secondary school teacher but I taught reception last year.
The 3 teachers who have taught nursery in the 6 years I've been at this school have all been just primary qualified generally with special interest in early years, and have all taught yr 1/2 at other times..?
(sorry OP, not the point of the thread I know)

Nonnymum Wed 11-Sep-19 19:09:39

It depends on the nursery. The nursery attached to our school is lovely. One GC was there forc2 years and one is still there. I can't say I have noticed any telling off and all the children seem happy and confident.

Pomegranateseeds Wed 11-Sep-19 19:10:06

My message was in reply to ALoadOfTwaddle

ineedaholidaynow Wed 11-Sep-19 19:10:57

Private nurseries still have to follow EYFS

Roselilly36 Wed 11-Sep-19 19:11:58

I totally understand how you feel OP.

When my DS1 got to this stage I visited a local nursery, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing and hearing, shouting at the toddlers for running, but I was also told that the staff would not have physical contact with the children. I thought if DS1 fell over/hurt himself/was upset I would want a member of nursery staff to cuddle him like I would. And yes must be fully potty trained.

I knew there was no way DS1 would thrive in that environment, and selected a lovely playgroup that was run by mums. Would accept DS1 in pull ups. Much more nurturing.

I hope you can find a better option for your little one.

ALoadOfTwaddle Wed 11-Sep-19 19:12:39

Dunno, Pomegranate. Are you an academy or free or private school? I believe they don't have to ensure their teachers are actually qualified to teach the age range/subject they're with. But we've got students in our school training to teach specifically EYFS.

ChildminderMum Wed 11-Sep-19 19:12:52


Not quite right. Primary teachers are qualified to teach Reception and Nursery class. Some teacher training specialises in (Primary) Early Years eg Nursery-Y2.
Early Years Teachers (EYTS rather than QTS) are only qualified to teach in the EYFS so 0-5 including Nursery and Reception but not Year 1+.

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