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How do you decide between a nursery and a childminder?(11 Posts)
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my DS goes to nursery... i liked the fact that he would be mixing with a lot of other children in a "school" environment, which would prepare him for school. the nursery feeds through to the local schools so they help with meeting the teachers etc, he has made friends that he will eventually go to school with...
i like the educational element, the fact that it is ofsted regulated, the staff are all trained etc., i get regular proper feedback etc. etc.
Go and see a few childminders and nurseries and see which you prefer both tick different boxes for different reasons...depends how old your little one is? What vacancies are available in your area.
Im obv biased as am a childminder..but I have been a nanny and worked in a nursery in the past and providing I could find the RIGHT childminder I would go with a childminder every time, simply as they are so much more personal, they stick to your rules, the activities and outings vary, they also tend to me much more hands on and huggy than nursery staff....If I couldn't find a childminder I would look for a small nursery with more mature staff in the room where my child was going to be ( pref staff with children themselves).
You just have to do what seems right to you.
I used a childminder for DS. It was like a "home from home" for him and he, IMO got more personal care.
I went with a childminder as nurseries in my area have long waiting lists, limited baby places (I see your ds is 8 months from profile) and neither I nor dp drive so we need to be able to drop off/collect fairly near home. My mum and other older women with good advice also recommended CMs.
I was lucky as I only arranged to see two CMs initially, I would have phone and contacted others but I really liked the first one I met. She has 5 kids ranging from 7 to grown up, oldest is registered as her assistant. The whole family and other mindees seem to adore him, and he's clearly very happy to be there.
Can I just add that Registered childminders are also OFSTED regulated in the same way and to the same standards as nurseries are.
I chose a nursery as we had no way of getting personal recommendations about CMs (and I'd say that getting those from people with current knowledge is vital), and that as I work FT, the only children that DS mixes with are those where he is cared for - so at nursery he has made loads of friends who have moved up with him.
He's been in nursery since he was 4.5 months, and the staff are very huggy and affectionate.
I always giggle when people think nurseries are more socialble than being with a cm. Having had experience of both I think the socialisation available at a nursery is much more limited than the children I cm for. At nursery you only mix with the other children at the nursery and always in the same areas... as a cm we have a group of children at home BUT we go out and about every day. We meet hundreds of new children each week, we do all sorts of things from puddle splashing in the park, picnics, the zoo, toddlers, music, art classes, swimming, splashpool, playdates, lunch dates, summer festivals, fun fairs, the beach, the model village, the forest...and thats to name a few.
Not trying to turn this into a cm v nursery debate. I don't have a problem with nurseries at all. Just trying to present both sides
I've used both. I would say (in my v humble opinion)
My babies have always seemed happier at a childminders. Baby rooms at nurseries (and yes I have used them) always seemed a bit too hectic for their little minds!
There is also the cost - nurseries are usually far more expensive and far less accomodating. Having said that, if you use a CM you have to take their hols into account and you don't have to with a nursery.
My daughter is currently at a CM and I like it that way as her brother gets to go with her when he's on school holidays so she gets to feel more secure with him by her side and he is old enough that he can tell me if there may be any problems.
Personally, I prefer a CM for babies. Nursery can come when they're a bit older.
Again though, its the thing that an excellent CM is just that, a bad one is bad, and the same for nurseries. Littlestars for instance is the sort of person that I would have DS with in a flash - but my SIL is a CM, and I've heard of many others like her who never go or do anything more exciting than trail the babies and toddlers to school to drop children off, come back, go back to school, come back etc etc
That said, I saw some grim nurseries too - at the one DS goes to the baby room is tiny, and the toddlers do Jo Jingles, loads of art, gardening, cooking, all sorts of play, go on the bus to the next village, outings to farm park etc
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