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Concerns about 3.9 year old

(6 Posts)
ColgateSmile Thu 30-Oct-14 19:24:04

My friend's child has recently (about 6 weeks ago) started attending nursery two days per week, nursery have raised some concerns about his development but my friend isn't quite sure whether their concerns are justified or if her DS is still settling in at The nursery.

She has recently been given an 'on entry assessment' for him but we don't feel it really does him justice, the concerns are that he is behind in several areas of development, not potty trained yet (no interest in doing so) and shows no interest in interacting with other children.

He is very highly strung and cries A LOT when he gets dropped off, my friend phones the nursery during the day to find out how he is getting on and is always told that he settled within 10 minutes and that he is playing happily.

He will be starting school in September 2014 so the nursery are trying to prepare all of the children for school and have mentioned that he is unable (and sometimes unwilling) to attempt to put on his own shoes and coat. Is this really an issue for a 3 year old?

Friend is happy with the nursery, likes the staff in the pre-school room and feels that they are being very supportive but she's quite upset about the report which seems to show that developmentally he is quite behind in some areas.

How can she bring this up with him without coming across as being in denial or just being precious? She lacks confidence so it's not easy!

ClawHandsIfYouBelieveInFreaks Thu 30-Oct-14 20:35:17

Shoes and coat at three? I didn't know one child who could. I'm sure there are some but many can't. Potty? Not unusual. Neither is crying on drop off.

Your friend should concentrate on

is always told that he settled within 10 minutes and that he is playing happily

That part of things. It's hard when a pfb is criticized.

tobysmum77 Thu 30-Oct-14 20:46:01

She really needs to just ask to speak to the nursery manager about the report. It doesn't appear precious or pfb in the slightest.

InfantTeacher Thu 30-Oct-14 20:54:00

There are two ways of looking at this situation;

1. Nursery see a lot of children over time, and it's quite easy to spot a child who doesn't quite fit the normal development pattern of a 'typical' child. If your son's friend is 3.9, then I'm guessing he is going to be 4 in December or January, which means he isn't one of the younger ones in the year. The older children (Sept-Jan birthdays) are usually the most advanced at nursery age. Most children of that age would be potty trained I think. Perhaps the most significant concern is the fact he doesn't interact with other children.

2. The second way of looking at this, is that your friend is the one who knows her child best. Some children do potty train late, some don't get the social interaction until a bit later; but all of this can be perfectly normal within child development parameters. My ds is an August birthday, and I was told in Y1 that he needed extra support with his learning because he was behind the other children. I knew that there was nothing wrong, except the fact he was so young (and a prem baby too) and I was proven right over time.

The point here is that parents know their child really well, but nursery staff have a much bigger picture to compare children to; sometimes usefully, and sometimes not so much. I think the best advice I can give her is to bear both these views in mind, remembering that only time will tell which is the more significant. In the mean time, I would go along with the support that nursery are offering, it can only help his development regardless of what happens over the next few months.

This time next year she will either be feeling relieved that actually the issues raised were nothing more than settling in concerns, or relieved that nursery staff picked up on the issues so promptly in order to give him the best possible provision. Either way, it's a win win - so in summary, I would tell her not to worry but to be pleased that the staff care enough to raise their concerns.

Just out of interest, is her son in a state nursery or private day care?

addictedtosugar Thu 30-Oct-14 20:55:18

DS2 is 3y6m, and so will be starting school in September with your friends boy.

He can certainly get his shoes on - although they are on the wrong feet half the time.

He can also put his coat on, but not fasten it.

BUT, if he has never been encouraged to do these things, why would he be able to do it?

Still in nappies is unusual, but not necessarily a problem - however school will expect pants not nappies unless very good reasons.

After just 12 sessions, I'm not surprised that he is unhappy at drop off - especially if he is used to staying with Mummy all day every day. The fact that he settles and plays well is good to hear, and suggests he will settle with time.

Interacting with others. I thought at this age, playing alongside was more common than interacting with them?

I wouldn't say any of the above means he is behind if he's never been shown or expected to do the things. For example, I'm sure I could be capable of knitting, but I'd need to be shown how - if you just gave me wool and needles, I wouldn't be able to make you a scarf.

ColgateSmile Thu 30-Oct-14 23:05:56

It's a private nursery. She has said that she is happy with the nursery, she is concerned about the crying at drop off (he literally clings to her!) but she's hoping that he will get better with time.

I think a meeting/chat with the manager might be a good idea, she's not very confident though so I don't know if she would feel able to do that... I will try and suggest it. The nursery do seem to be very supportive, I have read the report and I don't think it's overly negative but can see that his mum might think that (my eldest son needed some additional support when he first started school, I was very defensive at first and found it very difficult to accept that he needed that intervention).

I think you may be right addicted my friend is lovely but she has always done everything for her son so he's not really had the chance to practice becoming more independent... When he has to my house and has to get his coat when it's time to leave he gets very upset and cries saying 'I can't do it' sad

Thanks for all of the replies smile

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