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Is there meant to be routine at school nurseries?

(9 Posts)
hanban89 Sun 11-Jan-15 21:50:17

I'm sitting here in a bit of a state as DD is starting her first day at nursery tomorrow and every time I think about it I start blubbering. We went for her induction day last week where I stayed and she seemed fine, so hopefully no tears tomorrow. However at her induction the nursery teacher explained that after the register and teeth brushing the rest of the afternoon is free play until tidy up time. This includes snacks as they have someone constantly filling the snacks table and the kids can just help themselves anytime. I thought they would maybe have some free time, story time, snack time etc but no. I'm a bit of a germ freak and don't like the idea that after playing with the toys/sand pits they don't have to wash their hands before going and eating as it's unsupervised.
It is a school nursery where I'm taking the government entitlement of 3 hours a day (Scotland) not a private nursery so just wondered what other school nurseries are like?

dementedpixie Mon 12-Jan-15 09:37:35

Ours had a free flowing snack time but they were encouraged to go and wash their hands before eating as there were staff there supervising/replenishing food.

I am sure there will be some sort of structure in place, they won't just run around like feral animals. Why not ask about hand washing policy

insancerre Mon 12-Jan-15 11:43:08

Why do you think its not supervised?
You've said there is someone to replenish the snacks
I'm sure that person will be super vising and ensure hands are washed as well as ensuring that all children have accessed the snack
Free play is not unsupervised. It just means children make theur own choices with adults on hand to guide them
Its quite important that children do learn to be independent self-motivated learners for when theygo to school
Its actually what school readiness means

hanban89 Mon 12-Jan-15 22:36:29

I maybe don't think things were explained to me very we'll. I got given a copy of their newsletter today and it outlined their focuses for this term so perhaps more structure than I thought. I have been encouraging her to wash her hands herself before snacks so hopefully she starts to do it. I'm probably just worrying too much and anxious about her first day/settling in. Thanks for replies:-) x

GingerSkin Mon 12-Jan-15 22:53:45

I guarantee she will love it.

6 weeks down the line from now she'll know all about the rituals and routines that they do in the classroom. You think it looks chaos and not organised, but it isn't at all.

Our dd took us around her class after 5 weeks. She showed us where you hang your coats, where you use the toilet, the snack table (you take your name card and put it in the bowl so the teacher knows you've had your snack) you pour your own water (I know, I freaked at that too but hey I watched 9 x 3 year olds all do it without spilling a drop wink) where you wash you hands (I have to roll my sleeves up mummy); she pointed out her pictures on the wall, her favourite teacher and 2nd favourite one (the TA) and the chair she sits on at story time....this list goes on and on.

It's free play but with certain practices every day. Dd's class is large, 26 but there is a green group and a blue group so 13 in each. They do the days of the week each morning after register, then free play and snack table open, with certain activities guided; then tidy away and story time; coats on and home time. They encouraged to go outside come rain, wind or snow.

You're worrying far too much and it is likely because you've not asked the right questions whilst there. Did the teacher talk to you about EYFS? What they'd be doing this term? Is there a newsletter or website? It was all brand new to me, being a parent of a child at 'school' (albeit nursery) but you have to search for the information - the school will assume you have. Check the schools website, there should be a ton of info on there.

And finally, relax. She'll love it and it will go so quick you'll wish she was there longer grin

JennyBlueWren Tue 13-Jan-15 19:54:36

I'm a nursery teacher in Scotland. A couple of years ago (before I came to nursery) there was a lot more structure. The children are free to choose where to play and what with but we plan what is provided in each area to promote learning and there will be a mixture of adult led and independent activities but always supervised.
Snack is provided through most of the session (depending on when children have finished helping make it) but they are sent to wash hands before they come for snack.
Although we mostly have free choice we do take the children up to the school library, for gym and movement and music sessions and for walks in the local community.

It's hard to give all the information of what happens when parents come in for a visit, especially with the child needing attention too and if the teacher is not freed up from their normal duties and are needing to see to other children round about. I always ask parents to phone or pop in if they have any questions about anything so perhaps you should just ask when you go in. Or leave it a week and then ask if you can arrange a good time to meet with them and ask them about a few things you've been wondering about.
Or do they encourage parents to "stay and play"? Then you can see for yourself how things work.

JennyBlueWren Tue 13-Jan-15 19:56:38

Ps What Gingerskin said is about right although for EYFS read CfE Early Level!

BMO Thu 15-Jan-15 21:12:27

I much prefer a more structured setting and that's what I chose for my son. Some nurseries are a lot more "free-flow". I think it's just an issue of finding a setting that suits you and your child.

Starlight9 Mon 19-Jan-15 19:18:38

In Wales, they have introduced the 'foundation phase' for children under 6 (I think it's 6), which is where they set out different tables and children are allowed to choose which activities they wish to do. I think testing has proven that is benefits the child - I'm not completely clued up about it apart from a module I completed in Education Studies. I felt the same when my LO began nursery but she does learn a lot more than I expected her to.

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