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Tell me about your experiences of sending an under 1s to nursery

(19 Posts)
mustincreasebust Tue 28-Oct-08 20:03:15

After initially thinking of leaving my dd, who will be 7 months, with a CM for 3 days a week, but my gut is really drawn to a nursery next door to my work. It means I can breastfeed her a couple of times during the day.

Tell me about your experiences of nurseries for such a small baby (good, bad and ugly). They only take a max of 6 babies in the baby room and "try to create a home from home atmosphere" (their brochure) so I like it in theory. I will be working from home the other two days btw and hopefully will find a mothers help to entertain her for a few hours.

Also any insight of what you believe makes a good nursery for such a small baby would be much appreciated.

DoubleToilandTroubleBluff Tue 28-Oct-08 20:06:32

Mine both did 3 days a week at nursery form 20 weeks.
I have nothing but praise for the on ethey went to.
The baby room was so lovley and the staff there were great.
Mt DS' learnt skills that they would prob never have gained anywhere ele.
They knew shapes and coulours before the age of 3 ( maybe even earlier) as was some time ago.
I found the expereience very positev and they both syill have fond memories of their time there

MurderousMarla Tue 28-Oct-08 20:06:34

Hi - sorry I can't answer directly, but my DS started at 10 months and in hindsight I wish it had been earlier - for his sake, not mine... as he was just in the midst of separation anxiety and initially it was very hard to leave.

So what I'm saying is, I think the advantage when they're a bit younger is that by the time they go through that, they've already created bonds with their keyworker/other staff and find it a bit easier when you leave.

I would visit and get a feel for the place, what did it for me was a real sense that everyone - staff and babies - were very happy there.

Jbck Tue 28-Oct-08 20:20:09

DD2 started her settling in sessions at 8.5 months & started at 9.5 months, she goes 3 mornings a week & it took a little while but she seems to really enjoy it now. She ocassionally cries when I leave but I can hear her stopping the minute the door is closed & now she's usually laughing when I arrive back. She's picked up lots (including coughs & colds unfortunately) & has a different experience from the one she has the 2 mornings she spends with my parents. I'd say she interacts better with other children than DD1 did at her age and is generally less clingy.

It is hard around that age tho' as it's a difficult time to start leaving them. The baby room at her nursery has a lovely atmosphere & all the staff are really nice. I would never have been bothered to get out paints & do all the tidying up for the 5 minutes an 11 month old would do 'painting' but they do & it's an experience I'm glad she's getting. I'll gladly sit & play for hours with blocks & books etc but they can do all the messy stuff & I only need to wash her clothes grin.

I'd make sure you're really happy with the nursery & that they suit settling in around you & your baby not their timetable. Ours did & it reassured me so much. Good luck with it.

Heated Tue 28-Oct-08 20:22:12

I have always been very happy with mine at nursery, is a fab place at a farm - ds went at 9m and dd at 6m when I went back p/t. I have since used a CM who has charge of a baby and although she is very competent, I still think I made the right choice in choosing a nursery for both their welfare and education.

My dd in particular was fortunate to have the deputy manager who is a smiley, smiley grandmother who gives lots of cuddles. It's a really warm, welcoming place, parents popping in and out all the time and there is lots for them to do - dd's speciality is messy play. Nursery can be always relied on, they're never going to call in sick (something the CM has done which has equated to lots of stress) but, on the other hand, they are quick to exclude if your own child is ill to protect the other children, but I can live with that. In fact they are fussier about things than we are, which I have to remind dh is a GOOD thing.

There has been the odd niggle but they are very receptive. If I didn't have confidence in them, it would be very hard to go to work and I would have interviewed every childminder in a 10 mile radius!

compo Tue 28-Oct-08 20:24:15

6 babies in the baby room sounds fab to me
My first child went part time at 5 months, no problems at all
My second went at 10 months and again no problems
You can tell them your routine and often they won't stick religiously to it but I found both my two slept better there and also slept better the night they had been there as they were more stimulated

JollyPirate Tue 28-Oct-08 20:26:44

My DS went 2 days a week to a nursery in the town where I worked. They were great about me going in at any time to see how he was. No problems at all. He is now nearly 6 and no ill effects from attending nursery that I can see.

catweazle Tue 28-Oct-08 20:34:41

The nursery my DD started at 10 months is almost next door to my work. Initially I thought I could go in at lunchtime to BF her but quickly realised that would mean two tearful partings a day

DoubleToilandTroubleBluff Tue 28-Oct-08 20:38:31

I have to say as well nursery got my two into a great routine, which i would stick to at home too.
ANd they got them to try a wider variety of foods too.

unmadebed Wed 29-Oct-08 16:08:35

My ds is now 20 months and started at nursery aged 6 months- sounds a bit like the set up you describe. I felt guilty as hell but he loved it. Last Christmas we all went to nursery to see Father Christmas and ds saw his key worker - he looked at her with such love! Part of me was a bit jealous but the rational bit of me knew it was proof he was happy. He still loves her!

cinnamon81 Sat 01-Nov-08 13:56:57

I agree with catweazle about the leaving more than once. I start back in January and had hoped to go in at lunch to feed but nursery staff advised its often more upsetting for the child as they think they're going home and you leave them again, and Mum leaving is the worst bit of the day as far as they are concerned.

ceebee74 Sat 01-Nov-08 14:07:41

My DS started nursery 3 days a week at 6.5 months (he is now 2.4) and he has loved it since day 1. Am currently on mat leave again but DS is still going to nursery 4 days a week at the moment, dropping to 3 days a week in a few weeks - he loves it so much and we can afford to send him, that although I feel a little guilty, I know it is in his best interests for him to continue going.

On his first settling session (an hour) I remember going into pick him up and he was sat in a bumbo seat whilst the older children were running round popping bubbles which the staff were blowing - he had his back to me but I could see from his movements etc that he was loving it - even now, that memory makes me smile.

He has developed into a very sociable little boy, his skills (such as feeding himself etc) are much more developed than they would have been with me (I think I have a tendency to 'baby' him so probably would still be feeding him now blush grin)

As others have said, he developed a routine there which I have continued at home - again, something which I am not sure I would have done if he had been at home with me.

Am now expecting DS2 in 3 weeks and I will be on mat leave longer this time so DS2 won't be starting nursery until he is 10 months old - in some respects, I think this is going to be harder as the seperation anxiety will be there and part of me thinks he should go at 6.5 months like DS did but I don't want to go back to work that soon!!

FiveGoMadInDorset Sat 01-Nov-08 14:10:27

DD started at 1, DS will be starting same nursery at 6 months, and know he will enjoy it, the staff are wonderful, DD loves them talks about them when at home, they have a very low turnover and a max of 6 babies as well.

MrsMattie Sat 01-Nov-08 14:17:45

My son started nursery at 10 months old and was fine. He cried a bit for the first couple of weeks, and it took me a good 3-4 months to really, honestly feel OK about leaving him (I was forever obsessing about what he was doing, what they were feeding him etc etc), but it was all fine. He absolutely loved it in the end and when we moved to a new nursery when he was 2 and a half (moved house) we both genuinely shed tears (me and DS). Still miss the nursery now.

MrsMattie Sat 01-Nov-08 14:18:14

Sorry, he started at 7 months part time and went full time at 10 months, I should have said....

mustincreasebust Sat 01-Nov-08 19:24:55

good old mumsnet thank you so much its a load off my shoulders. i really like the thought that she will get stimulation that i really cant be bothered with most days, blush as well.

BabyBaby123 Sat 01-Nov-08 20:48:26

my experience of nurseries is having worked in them and I would never leave an under 1 in any nursery - no matter how good you think it is. Babies need to bond with one carer and they need individual attention and stimulation. No matter what you see when you visit a nursery it vary rarely happens ime that babies get any where near what they need in a group setting. You are better off to stick with your childminder if your dd is happy with her.

lazyhen Sat 01-Nov-08 20:53:04

My DD went at 18 weeks - 2 days per week. She's now 10 months and I'm so glad she's there. She's been really ill recently so missed a few sessions. When I took her back in and she saw her keyworker she was SO pleased. Jumping up and down to get to her.

I think it can seem so daunting with a young'un (my DD couldn't even sit up when she was first there), and we did look at CMs but I followed my gut instinct and was really pleased I did.

Good luck with your decision.

cmotdibbler Mon 03-Nov-08 10:40:43

My DS went to nursery ft when he was 4.5 months old. My experience was wholly positive - again, it was a small group (maximum of 12, but they very rarely had more than 9) and they had a system where there was always one of two of them in there, with the other staff being stable as well. With a ratio of 1:3 and all of them having naps, it actually meant that for a lot of the time the ratio was 1:2 or more - and the staff are only looking after the children, not cleaning/making lunch etc. Unless your CM was only going to have 3 children in total (including her own) around at any time, I can't see how they get more individual attention.

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