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Have you had an 11 month old start nursery? Advice please?

(15 Posts)
Arabella36 Wed 24-Nov-10 14:36:27

My baby is starting nursery soon at 11 months old. Will be 3 full days a week. What should I expect? If you have been through this with a baby of similar age how did it go for you? What advice would you give me? This is a first DC, and on mat leave till now so it's all new to meconfused

She'll have a 2 week settling- in period.

emy72 Wed 24-Nov-10 15:29:39

Marking my place, as I have a 16 month old to start 3 days a week from 19th of Jan and dreading it. I feel like I've left it too long but no long enough if that makes sense!!

Guacamohohohole Wed 24-Nov-10 15:33:15

Marking my place too... My DS will be starting nursery early next year, he will also be 11 months old. I'm really worried because he's a bit of a Mummy's boy and quite clingy.

stargirl30 Wed 24-Nov-10 15:38:10

A good nursery will have a series of stages during the settling in period.
DD started at about 15 months. She had a short visit with me there, then an hour or so without me. Then I can't remember if we did a half day or went for a full day straight away.

She loved it and settled in well. I was worried about her napping as she's a rubbish sleeper but no probs.

I think our nursery offer home visits by a nursery worker if they are finding it hard to settle.

You will probably be a lot more upset than they will be.....

Tangchi Wed 24-Nov-10 15:38:53

My little girl started at 10 months 3 months ago. The fisrt ten weeks were a bit of a nightmare. Cried every time she was left. Sent home sick at least one day a week (she only goes two days!). She has had a cold since she started BUT these last two weeks some thing has clicked and she seems to have settled down.

Make sure you know the key worker and like them. be patient they get sick and know what you are going to do ie picking them up and getting away from work

larus Wed 24-Nov-10 15:41:09

Hi Arabella. DS1 started at nursery at 12 months and DS2 to a childminders at 11 months (the change was due to DS1 going to preschool which wasn't an option if they went to nursery).

The nursery was brilliant - we did settle in time from about 2 weeks before I went back to work, starting at a couple of hrs with me there and finishing with 1 morning unaccompanied. Probably about 3 settling in sessions in total and included a nap at the nursery. I think most nurseries do this and its fairly adaptable depending on what you want to do (though I don't think it was free!).

I also sent them both with their comforter when they started.

Not considering myself a neurotic mother, I did spend the morning he was in unaccompanied sat outside in the car with the window down - listening for crying! He was fine. It did take a little while for him to get used to it, a couple of weeks from memory, but after that he loved going. THey do get tired though - its a long day.

It is a stressful thing to do, and there is loads of guilt associated with childcare (there is a fair amount of SAHM/working mum shall we say bickering, and not just on MN) but using nursery and now a child minder works for us.

londontj Wed 24-Nov-10 15:57:07

My DD started nursery a couple of months ago. She's just turned 1. 2 full days a week.

To start with there will be tears (from both of you) which is totally normal but it will definitely get better as time goes on and you will start to see the upside before long.

While you're going through the difficult first bit, don't expect too much from either of you - when you leave your DC for the first time, go down the road and eat a cake and read a trashy magazine, don't expect to be able to concentrate on anything more taxing. In the same vein, don't expect your DC to be thrilled about the whole business, they need to learn their own strategies and schemes to negotiate this new world and that all takes time, but will happen.

My DD is pretty clingy and wasn't happy to be left to start with, but after the first week (during which she sucked her toy sheep all day), she actually started to enjoy herself and 2 months on she marches up to her friends to give them a kiss when she gets in. She still moans sometimes when we get to nursery, but then we would all rather stay at home in bed sometimes.

One of the downsides (especially at this time of year) is that they get every cold and bug going. The massive upside however, is that in the last few months my DD has got really really sociable, much more confident with strangers, is walking around the place and talking to anyone who'll listen. Everything she was starting to do has accelerated hugely. She also does the actions to 'Twinkle Twinkle' at any opportunity which I find massively endearing and not something I've taught her.

Good luck, it will be ok.

Arabella36 Wed 24-Nov-10 17:08:10

Thank you for painting a realistic picture for me london, larus and tangchi. I have faith it'll work out ok in the end but not looking forward to the start!

Arabella36 Wed 24-Nov-10 17:13:01

And stargirl, thanks too! (Pressed post on earlier message more quickly than i meant too).
Emy and guacamo - its good to know I'm not the only one apprehensive about this next step, it feels like the first big one. I know what you mean re being uncertain about the age your baby should be when you go back to work. Some people told me going back to work earlier would make separation anxiety less likely, but I decided in the end to take as long as I could at home with her. I suspect there are no "right" answers.

stressheaderic Wed 24-Nov-10 17:14:13

My DD will be 11 months when she begins nursery on 4th January.
I too am apprehensive and anxious about it all.

My DD is an independent little lady, not very cuddly, always off playing... I'm actually more worried about me! I've never left her anywhere by obligation, only by choice, and I know I'll be in bits when the time comes.

doireallywant3 Wed 24-Nov-10 17:25:53

my DD started nursery aged months. for the first 3 weeks she did 5 half days, then we had a 2 week hol. then she did 3 weeks of 4 full days, then another 1 week hol. she has been doing 5 full days since early sept and is very happy. her settling in period was over 2 weeks and withing a few days she was perfectly happy. more upset when i picked her up then when i dropped her off. I have a lot of trust in the nursery that they will provide good care and food etc, and they do. I had a good feeling about the staff when I chose it which is so important. She moved from the baby room the the toddler room abotu 5 weeks ago and there was a few mornings of leaving her crying while she got used to the differnt staff but she was quickly very happy again. she's an adaptable little thing and very chilled anwyay, so i guess i'm really lucky in that sense. Other posters are right about the bugs though... she has had more colds and coughs since she;s been there. At the moment, I'm 16 weeks preg with DC2 and have been ill for the last 5 weeks with cough/cold/tummy bug... all boguht home by DD!
i have no regrets abut putting her in nursery so I can go back to work and i think it's been good for all of us. she has loads of fun there, it's great for her development, and I get to feel useful and earn some cash. I don't feel guilty as we're a very happy family with our arrangement.
OP - if you find a nursery that you really like, just go for it. I hope it works out for you.

doireallywant3 Wed 24-Nov-10 17:26:20

oops, DD1 started nursery aged 10 months

Arabella36 Wed 24-Nov-10 20:41:13

Hi doireallywant 3, I had a good feeling too about the nursery staff when I visited; I saw a couple of staff members in different areas of the nursery putting an arm around a child and I liked that they had some warmth with the children

notcitrus Wed 24-Nov-10 23:48:21

My ds started aged 11 months - it was summer so we went on a couple picnics with nursery and then did the settling of two hours with me there in the room being as unobtrusive as possible, and then a couple hours where I went away.

He was totally fine - new toys! new room! I left him with his favourite blankie and a dummy and a carton of formula and bottle. I warned them that he wasn't a routiney baby, and he slept at random times for the first couple months (usually falling into his lunch which got heated up later), but eventually napped with the others.

He did have a near-constant cold for the next few months, but otherwise was fine, crawling off without a second glance. I suspect this made me much happier about the nursery than I would have been if he'd been clingy. He's only been upset about going about 4 times in the last 18 months (and I've been upset for longer than him...)

emy72 Thu 25-Nov-10 10:01:24

Arabella36, good luck and let us know how it goes.....

I wish I could have waited until she is 2 (September) as then they go in the "toddler room" which we know well and is a lot more interactive and we know all the staff really well... but I don't think work will be too happy if I extend my leave even further! (I have been off since April 2009!).

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