Worries about starting nursery(6 Posts)
So I'm starting my 20 month old DS at nursery, just two mornings a week to begin with. The hope is that we'll go up to two whole days. I need this so I can work, but I am a bit flexible.
Having just completed the settling in sessions I'm having a wobble about the whole thing. The staff are fine, the setting is lovely. They go for walks and do messy play etc. But because there are 3 toddlers to every 1 member of staff, they are basically just keeping the kids clean, warm and fed. It seems like they don't really have time to do much above and beyond that.
Obviously this is very different from home, where there is a lot of fun and cuddles etc. Do I just have to accept that this is a slightly different experience for him and it's only two mornings a week? We've tried a childminder in the past, which didn't work out. Childcare provision where we live is pretty thin on the ground, and this nursery is considered the best in the area.
Once the kids are settled the workers can manage quite a bit of 1:1 time with each in my experience.
I often go in to find one kid getting cuddles or a story with a worker while more are with the other worker. My ds's room has six older babies (16ish-24mo) and so one worker can do songs or playing with five while the other gives one baby a cuddle. And sometimes they just potter around.... often entertaining each other.
1adult:3children is the ratio in some people's homes during the day
And surely going for walks and doing messy play is far above and beyond just keeping them clean, warm and fed? It's offering stimulation and interesting situations... do you never let your ds just potter on his own? if you don't then maybe it'll be nice for him to entertain himself a bit... and it is only two days a week.
One to Three is fine. Children play with each other, and have ample opportunity for one-to-one cuddles if they need it. Adults play with children together, direct their play and activities in groups, but still manage the fact that they've all got the attention span if a gnat. I swear it's magic.
It IS a different experience, but that's ok - different isn't necessarily worse. I can see how much joy my son gets from interacting with children he knows, and that's something I can't provide at home.
I get what you're saying. It's quite reassuring! I suppose it's different because when I look after him, getting shoes on, for example is a game. But when you have to get 8 kids' shoes on, it's a lot more functional! I suppose this is unavoidable and perhaps the time of day when I've been there is a busy one. I was hoping for a bit more chat and fun from the staff, but it just seemed like they had a lot on their plates and didn't have the energy to engage all the time.
I think what you have described sounds good and also that it's perfectly okay for them not to engage all the time.
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