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CMing - what is acceptable/normal?(9 Posts)
I recently went back to work (DD 9 mos) and send my daughter to a CM 2 days a week. The CM seems like a nice person and DD seems to be ok with her (cries when I leave but I think that has to do more with me leaving than the CM herself IFKWIM).
BUT, there are a few issues that are bugging me and I can't seem to shake them off...
1) TV on all the time. Any time I drop off/pick up DD, the TV is on. And it's loud. It's even on before the mindees get there, set to CBBC. The kitchen is not a dining kitchen so any meals that the CM feeds DD are given in front of the TV. When I pick up DD there are a few school aged children (various ages) and they are all sat watching the TV, not playing or interacting. If I try to speak to them, they answer me but without even looking away from the TV screen! When we initially interviewed the CM we asked about TV use and she said that she sometimes had it on to let the kids chill out/wind down in the afternoon. We made it clear that we really limit DD's TV usage (half hour DVD max). AIBU to expect a CM to not have the TV on or just to have it on occasionally?
2) Sweets. I dropped in to pick up DD a bit earlier than normal the other day. When I went in the mindees (11,5 and 2 year old) were all snacking on Haribo candy. Now this is of course totally ok if their parents are all ok with it but I wouldn't be for my DD. What do others think of this (if parental permission wasn't given)? I'm pretty strict about sugar as I was allowed loads of sugary drinks etc as a kid and have a mouth full of fillings/root canals as a result!
3) Sleeping in pram. There are no cots at CMs. She only ever has DD sleep in pram. She goes for a walk everyday (sometimes twice) and relies on DD to fall asleep then. She then brings the pram inside for her to sleep. This was never mentioned when we initially met with childminder. We had an extended discussion re. when DD naps etc (she naps in cot at home when she is tired, not really by a strict schedule). CM said that she would just get DD to nap
according to her own routine but never said where. I never thought to ask as I just assumed she would have a cot or at least a travel cot.
I don't know if I should just relax (DD is PFB) or whether should listen to my instinct and find a CM that I'm happier with. I do feel that DD is safe with CM and is not being harmed in any way. I just feel that there is no real added value.
Any thoughts/advice would be appreciated.
I think the tv is one I would question, it is pretty lazy if she has it on all the time but unless you ask you don't know. If she has before and after school children the tv may be on at this times for them. As a mum of primary age children TBH when they get in this is sometimes what (dd especially) wants to do after a hard day at school. But like I say ask her she may assure you that it goes off when they go on the school run. Also you will get an idea from what things she does with your dd during the day, does she go to toddler groups or anything with her?
The sweets I'm a bit meh about TBH. I don't think sweets are a huge deal an d again have you asked her if this is a regular thing or was it a one off holiday time treat? These are things that you need to ask about if you want to know more because as you describe them there could be genuine reasons for it.
The napping in pushchair I really don't see as a big deal at all. As a mum of more than one child none of which had a napping pattern like you describe your dd I have always found the pushchair a better place to nape especially after I had more than one and school/pre-school runs to do it was better to have baby/toddler sleep in the buggy than drag a sleeping baby out of cot to go on school run. I know a few childminders who do naps this way.
TV has a place in early years childcare, but deffo not during meal times and I'm not keen on TV for the under 2s full stop. BUT I do make exception for afterschoolies who need time to wind down after their long day, and how do you balance their needs against DDs? talk to the CM and see what you can agree on - say no TV til after the school run for eg? You are however going to deprive DD of the pleasures of Auntie Mabel and the Poo when she is older
Sweets - sweets and treats are part of healthy living; I discourage parents from bringing them in but the sky won't fall in if they have sweets very occasionally. You don't know whether the parents sent in those sweets for a special treat. If you don't want DD to have sweets then make sure you tell the CM so
Sleeping in the pram - not ideal BUT unless it's for really long sleeps I wouldn't be too concerned. And walks in the pram = lots of fresh air
At the end of the day if you are not happy with arrangements give notice and find someone else
Tv. You should ask your cm about this. I have the tv on but I try to select certain programmes whilst the little ones are with me. When the kids come after school I have to take into consideration that my own kids my want to watch tv. Needs to be watched in moderation.
Sweets, I do not give cm kids sweets and I would prefer if their parents don't seen any in their lunch box etc.
Buggy for sleeping. cm really need to have a quite sleeping area with a bed or appropriate sleeping equip. If a child is sleeping whilst we are out in the buggy I find from experience that it best to leave them in the buggy rather than transferring them into the cot etc. However if the little one sleep s whilst in the home I will put her in the travel cot. I have dealt with one child who made such a fuss when she knew it was sleep time. She was often very tired as she got to me very early. I had to take her out for a stroll in the buggy to get her to sleep. Its not easy dealing with an overtired little one.
Give your cm some time, if it does not change then have a chat with her.
I have one 9mo who won't sleep anywhere but the buggy, and mum specifically asked for me to let her sleep there or she wouldn't sleep at all (have tried to put her in the cot but no luck at all)
TV I don't allow for under 2s but then I only have under 2s at the moment so that's no problem. Will look at the TV policy when they are over 2.
I don't have sweets either. Chocolate occasionally, but not haribo type sweets that stick on your teeth and rot them.
People do things differently all over the place though. You could probably find a CM who fits more with what you are looking for, but if your lo is happy then moving her would be a big deal, especially if you leave it much longer.
Like the PP posters said, have a chat with her and if you are still not happy you could look elsewhere. If any of my parents werent happy I would like them to feel like they can talk to me about it rather than feel unhappy.
I only have the tv on for 20 minutes before lunch time as I need time to sort the lunch out. The TV is not on at any other time of the day.
I have never given sweets and have asked parents not to send them in. We occasionally have cake as a treat.
I have 3 little ones that have sleeps here. I have three travel cots but only use two of them as one little one will only sleep in the push chair. Mum is happy with this. I would never put a child to sleep in a push chair if they will happily sleep in a cot.
I wouldn't be happy with so much tv on TBH. The fact that it's on before mindees even arrive would ring big alarm bells for me.
Eating in front of tv, again a big no no. If she doesn't have a dining table then she should have some little children's tables that can be used for craft and for meals. Lap meals in front of tv ok occasionally, but not for proper meals all the time.
Sweets - hard to say. I wouldn't want them given frequently. Clearly you're a bit distrusting because you didn't even realise the sweets were given and it was because you were there at a different time to your usual that you even saw it. Worth having a conversation about. I personally would think it would be better for children to have a scone or a savoury snack after school rather than straight into sweets.
Sleeping in a push chair - a big no no for that to be considered the norm. Some children are better off being left sleeping in a push chair, but in my opinion there should always be a cot available as the preferred option.
As individual things none of these would be enough for me to stop using the Childminder, but the combination of all of them - I'd be out of there like a shot I'm afraid. But then I have my wonderful CM to compare this to and I know she wouldn't dream of doing those sorts of things.
I wouldn't be happy with the TV being on all the time or with children eating in front of the TV especially not for babies or toddlers.
Sweets for school age children after school wouldn't bother me but not for toddlers.
My CM doesn't let the children watch any TV and has a rule where food can only be eaten while seated in the kitchen which I think is a good thing.
I don't have any problems with babies and toddlers napping in prams though and my CM explained on our first visit that babies and toddlers nap in buggies while older children have sleep mats. My DD will only nap in her buggy so this wasn't a big issue for me.
I think I would worry about the amount of interaction my child was having with this CM.
Thanks for the responses everyone. You have been v helpful.
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