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Opinions please, difficult subject

(25 Posts)
EverySingleStar Thu 01-Oct-09 17:16:09

Thought at first to post this in AIBU but then thought maybe would get more sensible opinions in here, particularly from childcare professionals (mums and dads of course welcome too).

My friend is a nanny and was on a playdate yesterday with 2 other nannies. One of the children has gotten particularly into hitting/biting others lately and my friend has told his nanny she needs to nip it in the bud more, as beforehand his nanny was just ignoring it.

The little boy started to get rough with friend's charge, and his nanny went over to him, took his hand and smacked it with her other hand. The little boy started to cry (he is non-verbal, not quite 2 years old). My friend looked at the other nanny in shock but neither of them said anything.

Do you think they should say something to not only the nanny but also the child's mother? Or are they being busybodies?

I've already given my advice but would like to hear from others.

southeastastra Thu 01-Oct-09 17:20:38

she should tell the nanny what to do, obviously not smacking him on the hand. was the nanny english? because i have seen some foreign childcare workers who have quite different views to english carers.

belgo Thu 01-Oct-09 17:20:56

She slapped his hand to stop him biting another child? I wouldn't say anything to the parents.

EverySingleStar Thu 01-Oct-09 17:23:40

belgo he wasn't biting, he was just shoving the other child to get a toy that he had. The nanny was English, in her 30's, a bit dotty but quite experienced.

belgo Thu 01-Oct-09 17:25:23

I think the nanny of the boy needs to speak to the boy's parents and discuss ways of dealing with the biting. Apart from that I would stay out of it.

EverySingleStar Thu 01-Oct-09 17:29:26

Okay, the biting thing had nothing to do with this particular incident, it is something that happened once or twice recently. Somehow that got blown out of proportion.

For the most part, his rough behaviour includes hitting other children, pushing/shoving or snatching toys.

EverySingleStar Thu 01-Oct-09 17:31:13

Think I'll post in AIBU anyway wink

Ebb Thu 01-Oct-09 17:37:46

Perhaps the nanny has permission to smack? I've been told I can smack if I feel it's warranted in all my jobs but never have and never would.

At this age rough behaviour is normal. Two years don't have social graces. They need to be taught and guided. The nanny should be teaching the child the boundaries but if she smacks, the child is going to think smacking is acceptable.

I wouldn't go to the parents but perhaps your friend could broach it with the other nanny and offer alternative ways of disciplining a toddler.

Stigaloid Thu 01-Oct-09 17:41:16

My friend is South African - she smacks her daughters hand all the time when she is naughty - works for her. I did it once with DS (but ever so lightly as felt odd) and to be honest it is not the route i would want to go to teach my child. I was smacked a lot as a child and it just made me hate my parents rather than learn lessons. But then i got hit on the backside with a wooden spoon or coat hanger. And then at boarding school with a plastic paddle by the headmaster. Fun times.

Stigaloid Thu 01-Oct-09 17:42:10

Before i went off on a tangent i was going to end with - if the parent finds this a suitable route for their child's discipline then it is their decision. I doubt an experienced Nanny would do it without parental consultation.

Littlepurpleprincess Thu 01-Oct-09 17:53:01

I am a childminder and even if a parent gave me permission, I would not, and could not smack a child ever. OFSTED would never allow it and a good thing too.

mananny Thu 01-Oct-09 17:57:23

I don't see that a controlled and calm smack on a hand will harm the child at all. It will be a short sharp reminder that his behaviour is unacceptable. But it's not a beating nor is it an unreasonable course of action if the parents are in agreement with it. I would stay out of it unless the nanny is worryingly rough/mean/out of control with the child. If my employers were in agreement I would smack a child's hand, but for some reason not their bottom. I think a firm but not violent slap on the hand can be effective as it doesn't cause lasting damage but does remind them in that moment that their behaviour isn't on. I don't believe it will teach the child that smacking is ok, as they are being smacked for negative behaviour and not as an everyday occurence IYSWIM?

EverySingleStar Thu 01-Oct-09 17:57:44

Can say with confidence the parents would not allow smacking.

Littlepurpleprincess Thu 01-Oct-09 18:01:52

The EYFS says;

"Providers must not give corporal punishment to a child for whom they provide early years provision and, so far as reasonably practicable, shall ensure that corporal punishment is not given to any such child by:

any person who cares for, or who is in regular contact with, children:

any person working on the premises.

An early years provider who, without reasonable excuse, fails to comply with this requirement, commits an offense."

argento Thu 01-Oct-09 18:08:59

If the parents definitely wouldn't approve and you know them, then maybe you could mention it to them. I don't think I'd get involved though. Maybe the parents told the nanny to smack his hand though? My boss has told me to smack my charge's hand if she hurts the cat.

mananny Thu 01-Oct-09 18:10:21

In that case the parents should be told. The nanny should ONLY use discipline techniques that are approved on and agreed with the parents. Some parents do believe in using smacking, and even though it's not right in many's eyes I think as long as it's used effectively rather than randomly and violently I don't see the problem. Of course no child should be treated with violence, blatant disregard for their needs or neglect. But in the real world, parents often find themselves in situations where a quick smack will deal with something, and if the child is healthy, happy, etc and there are no causes for concern a little smack every now and then is their choice and at their discretion. My issue is more that a professional child carer is smacking WITHOUT permission. That's abuse of her position if not the child too. I think there is a grey area if a parent gives permission for something like this. But without permission the nanny has absolutely NO right to physically discipline the child at all. She is not a parent and cannot act in her own judgement in these situations as a parent might!

FabBakerGirlIsSURVIVED Thu 01-Oct-09 18:12:58

Why the wink about asking in AIBU?

Seems like this is a strange situation.

EverySingleStar Thu 01-Oct-09 18:13:21

mananny I think you are quite sensible.

EverySingleStar Thu 01-Oct-09 18:13:57

Fab because there was no :p emoticon available. :P

mananny Thu 01-Oct-09 18:17:02

Thankyou EverySingleStar smile I am wearing sensible shoes and a cardigan and my librarian glasses... so I feel I look the part as well as sound it today grin

Littlepurpleprincess Thu 01-Oct-09 18:44:49

I'm not sure about nannys having to register with ofsted but ifr she is registered, she is breaking the law, even if she has the parents permission.

thebody Thu 01-Oct-09 19:27:02

As a Mum I would have smacked one of mine for that behaviour BUT as a CM I wouldnt dream of it. (tempted though on occasion).

I think you may have gently warned the nanny that she could be in trouble for doing this, even with parental permission but I wouldnt go further with this now, after all she didnt beat the crap out od him did she??

Blondeshavemorefun Thu 01-Oct-09 22:10:15

a child carer should not EVER smack a child in their care

it means they have lost control

I personally would have said at that moment to that smacking nanny (if i were your friend) something along the lines of

dont do that

would i tell the mum - prob yes, if i knew how to contact her

i am sure that all mb's, mums on here would want to know if their child was being hit by their childcarer

pippin26 Thu 01-Oct-09 22:29:08

Thats shocking, a professional childcarer smacking a child? Its unacceptable and I am sure Ofsted or other bodies would take a dim view of it - with or without parental permission.

I would have a quiet word with the nanny and tell her that you will be speaking with the parents.

frakkinpannikin Thu 01-Oct-09 23:15:18

I would have definitely talked to the nanny and found out whether she had parental permission for that (regardless of whether we think it's right or not). If she didn't I'd be taking it further, if she did there's not a lot you can do beyond letting her know there are better ways.

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