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Saying goodbye at nursery(16 Posts)
I'm currently settling my 18 month old boy into nursery 3 days a week. The nursery worker suggested that I sneak out without saying goodbye, which worked fairly well for the first two days. He barely cried, only a little bit when I returned. However, this past weekend he has been extremely clingy and not acting like himself, which got me worried.. My mum who is a teacher thinks it's wrong to not say goodbye. She says a firm, determined goodbye is best because it will teach the child that you will always come back for them. I'm really confused now. I do feel a bit mean if I just sneak out, but on the other hand, he is too young to understand me saying "I'll pick you up later." I was wondering how other parents handle it, especially with children of similar ages...
We do a big wave at the window - find mummy's car etc. Would that work?
I've never done the sneaking out, I just give dd a kiss and say see you later and walk out. She was upset the first few times but soon learnt the routine and knew I was coming back.
I agree with your Mum - I've always thought it's not fair if they turn around and you've snuck out. Easier said than done though as I can remember several occasions where I've said a firm "goodbye" to a crying DC!
He'll be clingy because of the new routine as well so give yourselves a bit of time to adjust.
I'm a nursery manager. I would always, always encourage a parent to say goodbye. Sneaking out is not a great option.
Imo, strong, cheery goodbye then hug/kiss and a wave is the best way to go (although in some cases I would actively encourage a parent to stay, all depends on the child)
I work in a nursery and when a child arrives we encourage them to say bye to mummy/daddy etc, then we pick them up and go wave out of the window. Even if they get upset at first it soon becomes routine and they're easily distracted after xx
My DC both started nursery at about 12 months, and I've always said goodbye to them when I left and said i'd be back to get them at the end of the day.
They were upset at first at me leaving, but I figured it would be more unsettling in the long run if I vanished without explanation when their back was turned. Unsettling in other situations too. If I vanish for hours without saying goodbye when they're at nursery, how do they know I'm not going to do that at home etc?
I would never encourage a parent to sneak out, it might sound ott but it seems like a breach of the child's trust to me?
They will usually quickly begin to understand and accept the concept of you leaving and coming back.
A big cheery, confident "bye, see you soon" kiss and a cuddle seems to work best.
It's very unusual for children not to settle and any decent childcare provision will let you know if it really isn't working.
It's normal for him to be clingy whilst he gets used to the new routine of nursery too
Also to add to that, some children do really struggle with the initial handover even when they are very settled in nursery, so a few tears on drop off (and sometimes pick up too!) does not necessarily indicate how happy they are during the nursery day.
I've found that the key to a good drop off is a quick, cheery hug and goodbye. We have parents at our nursery who linger and make a big deal out of it, which only seems to upset the child.
Agree with esme that lingering does not usually (some like to be settled at an activity for a couple of minutes etc I wouldn't count that as lingering) help the child at all, it just delays the inevitable!
Quite often children will work this out and begin to put in place delaying tactics!
I don't agree with sneaking out. At all. Think about it: you think your mum is still there, you turn around and she's gone. Panic.
A firm goodbye normally helps settling.
I agree sneaking out is not a great idea. Otherwise how is your ds to know when you're leaving and when you're just going upstairs / to the loo / to make a cup of tea?
Thanks all, for your comments. I'm going to try to say a quick goodbye from now on and see how that goes. My husband dropped him off yesterday and and said a very prolonged goodbye (over half an hour) because he struggled to leave him crying.. When I picked up my son, the nursery worker said he was a lot more unsettled than on the previous days.. This only confirms what a lot of people have been saying on here. So sneaking out is probably no good, but saying a long goodbye (going back and forth) isn't either because it's confusing. So will try a cheerful, quick goodbye from now on and try to be persistent with that.
It's easier for a one off but problems in the long term. If he thinks that at any time you might sneak off for the day he might start getting upset if you even cross the room.
I'd always advise saying goodbye.
Cheerful and quick, for sure. Nursery staff at dcs nursery said one reason they liked working there was it was next to a station so parents would drop their child and run for their train. Dd went through a clinging phase which was fine when there was a member of staff to attach her to, but some new staff weren't great at that - one reason I moved her after using same place for 6 years.