My nursery experience in e14 & e16 (good and bad)(3 Posts)
Sent from my iPadHi there, I started my daughter @ nursery about a month ago and it's been quite traumatic. To keep it brief my review and experience below so that hopefully others don't have to go through the same:
Seen and called the following:
My nursery: 1) they are not a true a true Montessori (see http://www.montessori.edu/refs.html). 2) not the friendliest and cleverest people answering the phone. 3) during the viewing everyone seemed artificially and overly nice, to a degree that even the cleaners and cooks would make comment on how cute my baby was. Felt like a car showroom! My instinct was to reject this on based on gut feeling. Heard from Various baby group moms that babies are left in bouncer chairs all day and even though they claim food is freshly prepared, it isn't unless you consider canned tomato soup as fresh.
Busybees excel (aka leapfrog): after viewing this nursery I decided to start my daughter here. BAD mistake! I should have followed my gut instinct again, but was really running out of nursery option and thought perhaps it's just a typical mom anxiety to not feel right. List of problem i had: 1) My daughter was given cheese although she has know allergies and a million form were completed to avoid this. Ended up with a daughter who had a severe skin rash all over her body. 2) having complained to the nursery manager (who seem more like a sales person) she advised that it takes time to investigate. About a month on, no response. We have left this nursery and will speak to ofsted again 3) caught one of the caters shouting at my 11 month old to lie down, even though she had crawled away from her allocated mattress on the floor... And is on her knees crying and wants to be picked up. Cruel? Heartless? Disgusting behaviour i think -considering that she was only 11 months and wouldnt even get the concept of staying on her mattress, let alone lie there and fall asleep w/o anyone when she is used to being with me since birth. 4) no shoe policy!! They wear street shoes in all the nursery rooms. So on a rainy day if you have a baby that's not walking yet, he/she will crawl on wet dirty carpet (if unlucky dog faeces!!) 5) baby diary log book: some carers have terrible terrible spelling and verbal english. 6) understaffed at times!!! 7) one good point was the outdoor play area and a selected few carers and the business manager being very nice and great at what they do. But overall: I would not recommend this place to anyone as it's currently run. Very chaotic!!
Crossharbour Montessori: what a bunch of unethical cowboys! Called for weeks to get an appointment to view the place. After gazillion calls I get an appointment, do the walk through (seemed ok as all new but very loud as its one huge room divided by baby gates),fill in the forms and getting ready to pay deposit I am told by one of the business managers that there is no place actually even though there was when I spoke to the guy on the phone the day before and whilst walking through the premises. Basically I ask questions on their allergy policy, which may have been a bit too much for them to handle. Why take on a child that requires special attention when they can take a 'non problem' child right?!? As they say they are inundate with parents wanting to enrol their child. Of course he denied this being the reason, but c'mon I am not stupid! ps: they also are no montessori either see why here : http://www.montessori.edu/refs.html
Little unicorn: love love love the place!! They have been great with my daughter unlike at busy bees, she literally leaps into the arms of the key workers when I drop her off. Why they are great? 1) children are TRULY kept occupied and engaged (singing, painting etc) 2) they may not have an outdoor play areas but they take them out for walks 3) all staff are qualified and most seem genuinely to enjoy the company of children and want to be there 4) NO outdoor shoes throughout the premises. My daughter is one happy baby now!
This is based of course on my personal experience, but my experience has been so unpleasant I wanted to share with others. Hope this helps, but by all means form your own opinion.
From Wikipedia:"Although the Montessori name is recognized by many, it is not a trademark, and it is associated with more than one organization. Schools and teacher training programs can differ in their interpretation, intensity, practical application, and philosophy in using this method with children."
There is no "True Montessori", just people's interpretations of it.
Maria Montessori believed that children should stay in the real world not in the world of fantasy. No role-play.
She believed a child's normal state is calm, ordered and thoughtful. Being excited is not normal.
Her method is over 100 years old. Does 100 years of research and science mean nothing?
I would never send a child to a Montessori nursery.
I recently went in to have a tour of Leapfrog Excel and came out feeling quite concerned to be honest.. The staff there were soo unenthusiastic and felt like they really didnt want to work there.. No one was bothered and this was pretty evident when looking around the class where the kids were keeping themselves busy (since the teachers were busy staring at the walls ) and not engaging themselves with the children. I couldnt see any one talking to the kids or taking part in the kids activities.. What was worse was when it came to the administration office.. the lady working there was rather unfriendly and just not really interested in answering questions.. she seemed tired and when i asked if she was working there full time .. her response was.. 'Unfortunately yes'! Guess the staff dont want want to be there and these poor kids are stuck there with such staff who are just not bothered or care about them.
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