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Childminder biscuit nightmare!

(27 Posts)
SarahLundsNewJumper Wed 11-Jul-12 09:46:08

I am looking for some advice about my CM. She is totally lovely and I am really happy with her and the kids love her. The problem is that she feeds them huge amounts of biscuits, crisps, sweets etc. I have asked her several times now if she can just give them the healthy snacks that I provide but because the other kids she minds eat the biscuits etc I know she just lets them have it too. My 4 yr old tells me how she had crisps and cake today 'just as a treat' but it's everyday.
I work 3 days and on the days they go to the CM they never eat their tea.
Do you think I should look for someone else? She is clearly not going to give up the treats-her cupboards are full of them. The cupboard is at floor level so my 20 month old just goes in and helps himself!!!

Please give me some advice!

ZuleikaD Wed 11-Jul-12 10:26:17

Wow. Yes, I think if you're unhappy (as I would be) then it's time to look for someone else. Does she have a food policy? As a CM I have no crisps, sweets or shop-cakes/biscuits in the house. If there's cake or biscuits on the menu it's because we've made it. Given that it's interfering with your younger child's nutrition because he's then not hungry for proper meals, and you've asked for a change that hasn't been made, I would look for someone else.

PaulaMummyKnowsBest Wed 11-Jul-12 10:59:18

the only time my mindees eat shop bought biscuits is at a toddler group and this is only with parental permission. I take breadsticks with me for the children that aren't allowed to eat biscuits.

I would speak with her and tell her that unless the junk food stops, you will be seeking childcra elsewhere

boredandrestless Wed 11-Jul-12 11:09:36

CMs are meant to offer healthy food and drinks, not feed mindees loads of junk.

I had the opposite problem when I was a cm in that mindees parents would send them with junk food and I had to have a talk with them and ask them to keep it for when they got home. I blamed ofsted.

If she isn't committed to feeding your children a healthy diet 3 days a week then yes I think I would change cms. She will get marked down at inspection for this.

Also. Why is a 20 month old able to wander into the kitchen and help themselves to what is in the cupboards!?!?! I would be unhappy about this even if the cupboards were full of food that was nutritionally sound.

Strotty Wed 11-Jul-12 11:24:51

As a CM myself, I like to think that I'd be listening to what parents ask me to do with their children, and then actually DO IT!!

Begs the question what else she's not listening to ....???

In the first instance, I would speak to her really seriously so that she knows you're not having it any more, and tell her that you are not happy that your children are being fed junk, it puts them off their cooked dinner etc... if she continues to ignore you - cos that's what she's been doing - vote with your feet.

Know is not easy as you're happy with her otherwise, and you probably don't like conflict.... but you are paying this lady to look after your babies, and she should be doing so to a level that is satisfactory to you!

Good luck chicka

S x

MaryPoppinsBag Wed 11-Jul-12 13:10:17

I'm a CM and there's no excuse for feeding junk to mindees.

My mindees do have a pudding after tea, such as yoghurt/ icecream/ cake/ biscuits but it is part of their meal. Fruit is always offered too.

Can I just ask what time you collect your children and what time do they get their tea?
I found (still find) that my children at that age were better fed quite early 4.30-5 and given supper ( cereal) before bed.

I have to feed my mindees at around 4.30 so they get finished for first pick up. Is your CM offering a snack instead of a full tea because your children are hungry?

Although it does sound like she isn't listening/ bothered!

SarahLundsNewJumper Wed 11-Jul-12 13:27:13

Thanks for your replies. I know you are all right and that CM's should be giving healthy food. I am just so upset as the kids love her and the thought of finding someone else they would like as much is daunting.

Another problem is that we live in a really small town (or big village really) and so all the childminders know each other and all really like my current one. I just worry that they will all think I am horrible.

Mary-I think maybe you have a point as I pick them up at 5pm and they are probably hungry. She has often given them biscuits and things while I am there and trying to get them out the door. Nightmare! Maybe if I changed my worling day and picked them up at 4pm instead then they might not hit that hungry time and I could get them home and feed them early. Will have a think about that.

Thanks again.

Rubirosa Wed 11-Jul-12 17:16:50

Have a meeting with her requesting your children are not given crisps/sweets/biscuits - put it in writing or email her afterwards summarising what you agreed to. Ask the CM "what can we do to ensure my children don't have biscuits?" and ask her for her solutions/suggestions - that way if she says "the other children have biscuits and yours want some" you can maybe say "I'll provide ricecakes/fruit for them". It might sound OTT but you need to make clear that this is important to you - I'd try to really formalise your preferences before moving them.

tootiredtothinkofanickname Thu 12-Jul-12 12:24:41

I would be very unhappy about this. You have to make some compromises when you're not the only one looking after your DCs, but this is too much IMO. Maybe have a proper chat one day, when neither of you is rushed, and explain that your DC's nutrition is important to you, that you are not keen at all on them being fed crisps and biscuits constantly, and would she consider putting a door lock on the cupboard door so your 20 months old can't help himself? Also, try to make her commit to some solutions there and then, maybe you can provide a healthy tea she could give them before you pick up, so you only give them supper at home?

Is she filling in a diary, so you know what they had and when? I hate confrontation and would be anxious about having this chat, and also about changing CMs, but if she disregards your request I would seriously look elsewhere. I'm sure you can find another nice CM, and on a positive note, if it becomes known you changed CMs because of issues with your DC's nutrition, I bet you would be taken very seriously the second time round!

ZuleikaD Thu 12-Jul-12 13:09:28

Another thing that would bother me is that the CM has in effect schooled your DCs to lie to you by telling your 4yo (who she clearly knew would talk to you) that the junk was a 'special treat'. By telling your DD that it was a 'treat' (which was a lie) she was hoping that the phrasing would be passed on to you and you wouldn't mind as much. Pretty duplicitous.

malovitt Thu 12-Jul-12 14:36:19

I agree with ZuleikaD.

This sort of thing makes me really cross and gives CMs a bad name.
It is not ok to give crisps, shop bought biscuits/cakes and sweets to minded children and to allow children to rummage through cupboards helping themselves. Full stop.
You have asked her not to and she has ignored you. It is not on at all.

SarahLundsNewJumper Thu 12-Jul-12 21:31:20

Well there is some progress on this problem. Yesterday when I went to pick them up they both had little bowls of chopped up apple (which they love and I give them all the time). CM said they hadn't had any biscuits all day (only fruit) and she said she is really trying to cut down. I was obviously really happy but I just worry that the other kids will still be getting the 'bad food' and so mine will feel they are missing out and hence pester the CM who will surely just give in. I would much prefer it if she just didn't have the stuff in the house-I don't, well only for me when they are in bed!!
Another worry is that she has said all this before and always just reverts back.
I am so worried I am even considering jacking my job in sad

boredandrestless Thu 12-Jul-12 22:24:00

If you have had the conversation with her before and she has changed for a short time only then I would make discreet enquiries into other childminders.

MaryPoppinsBag Fri 13-Jul-12 11:53:12

I would just ask what happens when they get older and feel denied? Do they have some in moderation? Mine do.

You will come across it when they start school - school dinners come with gorgeous puddings including cake and biscuits. Children bring in sweets and cake when it is their birthday. They even bake in class (sometimes once a week) what will you do then? What about Birthday parties?

I absolutely do not agree with being given crisps and biscuits for every single snack. But I think everything in moderation.

malovitt Fri 13-Jul-12 14:52:03

It's not in 'moderation' in this case though, is it?

The OP says "The problem is that she feeds them huge amounts of biscuits, crisps, sweets etc."

Blondeshavemorefun Fri 13-Jul-12 18:47:25

i thought cm via ofsted had to offer healthy snacks like fruit etc and not biscuits/crisps etc

SarahLundsNewJumper Fri 13-Jul-12 21:57:57

Yes I do let them have stuff in moderation. They have biscuits and birthday cake and ice cream and I give them chocolate too but not a whole twix (which is what 4 year old was eating once when I picked her up!) and not all day everyday. I realise they will have some unhealthy stuff but this is an open cupboard full of everything that is bad for them that they can eat at any time throughout the day.
I also didn't want to bring this up as it is really controversial (can't spell that!) CM and her family are all unhealthily large and clearly they eat all this stuff all the time too and are not worried about the health implications of eating this stuff. As I said she is great apart from this issue so a difficult decision.

MaryPoppinsBag Fri 13-Jul-12 22:05:10

I haven't said the CM offers the 'bad' snacks in moderation!
I am asking if the OP allows cakes/ biscuits etc at home.
And I am wondering how OP will handle things when they go to school and have Scrummy puddings and kids fetch birthday cake in ???

Are all puddings like cake out of the question or just when offered as a snack? E.g does the CM give them it after their packed lunch? And OP objects to this?

MaryPoppinsBag Fri 13-Jul-12 22:05:41

Sorry x posted

MaryPoppinsBag Fri 13-Jul-12 22:08:14

In which case I think you are 100% right to be concerned!

grandmainmypocket Sat 14-Jul-12 11:34:12

Dear Sarah

I feel for you. Its a hard one, if you can change your hours. But it upsets me as both a childminder and as a parent when I see this happening. We're supposed to be setting an example, which in a few or lot of cases we dont do. My old childminder used to give my son biscuits and chocolate buttons often and didn't see what was wrong with it. I empathise with you.

thebody Sat 14-Jul-12 17:58:39

As a cm I would have listened and accommodated your wishes.. End of.. Unless a parents wishes have a detrimental affect on the whole setting then its always right to work together for the benefit of the children.

All cms should have a healthy eating policy? Is she registered?

I had 'crap' in my high cupboards for my own Dcs to have on occasion but this wasn't in sight or reach of mindees.

I think this is very bad of her to be honest.

Laura19862015 Sun 17-May-15 22:40:54

Hi Sarah- this topic is soo old but sounds weirdly familiar��o have the exact same problems with my cm including living in a small town and not really wanting to change my cm! I was wondering how did you resolve the situation? I told my cm that i will provide all snacks for my daughter but now she gives biscuits to other kids but not her( which i asked for- i know!) but my daughter feels left out!!! What to do??? She isnt going to change her habits- is it ok to let my daughter having different snacks than other kids? Will she hate me for it?

kathryng90 Mon 18-May-15 08:33:45

Old thread ongoing subject though. I I am a cm. I give healthy snacks plus some treats (weekly). I also have a new parent who sends snacks as she doesn't want child to eat sugar of any kind or too much carbs. So no toast, bagels, flapjack, muesli bars or any of my usual after school staples. She sends pancakes and muffins she has made and they all eat fruit and veg. Kids commented first day that child had different but are used to a bit of variety ie mine are veggie, one doesn't eat beef (cultural) and one is diabetic so they are used to my answer of 'child's mummy sent this' plus statement about differences being good. Really not a problem.

Laura19862015 Mon 18-May-15 14:21:47


Thank you for your reply.

Ideally i would like my cm to stop giving kids biscuits and wotsits almost everyday, but i don't think i will win, so i just continue to send my daughter with her own snacks, although its hard to give her smth that will fill her up and last all day in her schoolbag....i have been feeling like i'm a bad mother that doesn't allow her child a treat, but really it wouldn't be a problem if it wasn't for the fact its almost every bloody daysad i will try to stick by what i said and only give her snack that i provide and see how it goes....I think she will be the only one that isnt allowed to eat what the rest of the kids are eating though, which breaks my heart, but im doing the right thing i believe...

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