Mixing childminder and nursery?

(13 Posts)
Queazy Wed 03-Jun-15 13:09:55

My dd has been with the same childminder since 10 months old and is now 20/21 months. Our childminder is lovely but they don't do learning or developmental activities - messy play and that sort of thing. I'd like to introduce a mix of childminder and a nursery when she is 2 yrs old in Sep, and then just use the nursery 2 days a week while I'm on mat leave next year (only 10 weeks pregnant now). Does this sound an ok arrangement? Do you think I'm being OTT in wanting her to go to nursery from 2yrs for a bit? I just want her to have more social interaction but conscious that I'll just be changing things around for her. Do you think I should wait until she's older and stick with childminder?

I know it's such a personal choice but I'd love her to mess about with other kiddies at the nursery and do all the cookery and other bits I've seen they do.

Thanks so much

OP’s posts: |
Littlefish Wed 03-Jun-15 18:50:26

Does she go to toddler groups with the childminder?

Are you going to need to use the childminder again once you are back at work? Will you need to use the childminder in the school/nursery holidays. Childminders can be like gold-dust and extremely difficult to find for before/after school care. I think it would be worth finding out about all the before/after school & nursery care for the school you think your dd will go to in the future.

I know it seems like a long way off, but you might really kick yourself later.

I think that children get the most out of nurseries once they are about 3 years old in terms of social interaction.

Queazy Wed 03-Jun-15 21:06:42

Thanks littlefish, that's really helpful. The childminder doesn't take them to toddler groups and doesn't do school runs, so though I think she's fab, sadly those aren't influencing factors for me with this specific childminder. I also think we'll need to move out of the area before dd goes to school as in a poor catchment area and can't afford to live in a better one round here! I do need to think long-term as you say, and keeping hold of the childminder could be good if I decide I want next dc to go there until 2-3yrs too. God, childcare is such a minefield!

Thanks again - really appreciate your input. I specifically sought out a childminder who didn't do school runs and ironically that will prob shoot me in the foot later down the line!!

OP’s posts: |
Littlefish Wed 03-Jun-15 21:33:38

Could you talk to the childminder and see if there are toddler groups she could be going to, especially now your dd is older? I've never known a childminder who didn't go to toddler groups - all the childminders round her do.

Queazy Wed 03-Jun-15 21:43:07

Yep, think I'm an unlucky one in that regard! I've been thinking about speaking to her, but also think it's still not where I want my dd to be 4 days a week when she reaches 2yrs. Think I'll go 50:50 with a small nursery near me until 2.5yrs and then just nursery. I did opt for childminder on the understanding she did groups, but find it awkward raising it as she does meet with others with small kids in their or her home, and takes them on lovely outings. They're definitely not just in the house all day, but I'd like more focus on her development as she gets older and tho very caring, my childminder doesn't seem v focused on that.

Thank you again - it helps to think it through as there are such pros and cons to both options!

OP’s posts: |
33goingon64 Wed 03-Jun-15 22:20:34

I think it's fine to mix it up. Sounds like she needs more stimulation. DS'd childminder does loads of craft and developmental stuff with him.

CloserToFiftyThanTwenty Wed 03-Jun-15 22:22:25

We've done a mixture of nursery and CM and it was fine, if you're worried about DC not settling


girliefriend Wed 03-Jun-15 22:26:08

Thats what i did, similar situation that dd had been going to a cm since she 8months but I felt a nursery might be useful in terms of making friends/ socialisation etc. So dd went to nursery one full day a week and continued to go to the cm 2 days a week (these were days that I worked.)

Queazy Thu 04-Jun-15 06:29:58

Thanks again girliefriend. Did you find that your dd settled in ok, and did you make a transition to just nursery at a particular age? Sorry to bounce back with more questions. I don't have any friends with lo's at a childminders, they all go to nursery, so their experience is different.

OP’s posts: |
icklekid Thu 04-Jun-15 06:34:22

Could you do preschool and childminder? My childminder takes/picks up another child from preschool morning sessions then has her in the afternoon. Seems to work well?

Queazy Thu 04-Jun-15 07:17:54

I'd love that icklekid but my childminder doesn't do school runs etc hmm Its worth a go tho. She might think I'm incredibly cheeky as I laid it on thick that I was choosing her partly because she didn't do school runs! In hindsight, an own goal, but for some reason I had a real hang up about school runs! Thanks and a great idea.

OP’s posts: |
girliefriend Thu 04-Jun-15 21:46:35

It took dd a little while to settle in, she was about 2.6 years I think. Helped that it was a nice nursery, good key worker, they had a pet rabbit that dd loved etc smile

She found it a struggle with tiredness but tbf it was a long day for her (8.30 -5.30) and she did nap there when needed.

I think it did also help a bit with preparation for school.

Personally I would feel weird with a cm taking dd to pre school, no idea why though confused was fine with cm taking dd to school but I guess she was a bit older then!

HSMMaCM Fri 05-Jun-15 08:52:13

If your cm did the social activities, messy play, clear learning objectives, etc, I'd be saying stay with the cm. As she doesn't, your nursery idea (or another cm) sounds like a good one.

I don't do school, or pre school runs, but I do do full preparation for school.

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