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need advice for choosing/finding a nursery for ds

(27 Posts)
lunarx Tue 05-Apr-05 11:49:00

we've recently moved to a new area and ds is 9.5 months old and we are wanting to find a nursery for him 2 or 3 days a week so that i am start to look for part-time work.
what is the best way to go about doing this? we are new to the area and i am yet to know any other mothers who might be able to advise.
would my health visitor (whom i am yet to speak to/meet) be able to advise?

& when i do find a suitable nursery with an opening for ds, what are some good questions to ask them? (i.e.-about daily routines, etc..)
i have to apologise for any ignorance on my part on this subject, this is all new for me!
(also one more small question, - when ds does eventually get into a nursery, do i pack a bag for him with nappies etc, and his food, change of clothes, etc..?) i know this sounds silly, but i really dont know!!

any advice is appreciated. sorry for the length of this.. thank you!!

otto Tue 05-Apr-05 11:55:26

There is a government website that lists nurseries. I can't remember what it's called, but you may be able to google it. Health visitor may know too. Also your local council should be able to send you a list.

Each nursery has different ways of working. We do provide nappiesand wipes for ds, we also provide a change of clothes that stay at the nursery until needed. Our nursery provides all food, but not all do.

Things you need to ask about are:

Food
Clothes
Routines
Nap times
Fees
Late collection fees
Core attendance times
Who will look after your ds (key worker)
What they will do/learn etc
How they discipline
Settling in periods

I'll come back if I think of anything else

bundle Tue 05-Apr-05 11:59:33

have a look through the local yellow pages, and get the nurseries listed to send you prospectuses through. try and see at least 3 so you can compare the way they do things.

Aimsmum Tue 05-Apr-05 12:01:54

Message withdrawn

bundle Tue 05-Apr-05 12:08:16

aimsmum, our nursery (excellent ofsted, dd1 spent 4 happy years there, followed by dd2) doesn't just let people come in without an appt because it disrupts the children's sleep, eating etc and you also have the full attention of the staff member showing you round (ie they are not covering someone else's breaks or doing their planning for their room)

otto Tue 05-Apr-05 12:11:37

I don't think that's the case Aimsmum. I would feel uncomfortable about asking loads of questions at a busy time such as lunch time. I think it's better to make an appointment so that you get the attention you need.

It might be a good idea to visit some childminders too. And I forgot to mention formula/expressed milk. I know that some nurseries provide formula and bottles. Ask about water too. If he's under one and still drinks boiled water you may have to provide that.

kate100 Tue 05-Apr-05 12:16:40

Have a look round and see if it feels right, what works for one family, might not be right for you. Think about the people that will be caring for your child, do you like them and fell confortable with them? Your local council should be able to help you with a list of registered child care providers. Good Luck.

Aimsmum Tue 05-Apr-05 12:19:23

Message withdrawn

bundle Tue 05-Apr-05 12:21:19

sorry, aimsmum, not having a pop

our nursery was the only one we felt comfortable with, some of the others we visited were virtually silent (yes, when full of children...)and seemed a bit cold, one of them was run by the equivalent of hyacinth bouquet (as another mum posted on here the other day) so we knew which one was best for us.

lunarx Wed 06-Apr-05 13:24:58

thanks for your responses all.. have found childcare.gov.uk (i believe it the website) and am going to make notes from your responses here so i can find the best suited care for ds..

any further advice, is welcomed!!

TracyK Wed 06-Apr-05 13:29:52

Which area are you in - there's bound to be mums on here in your area that cn advise.

lunarx Wed 06-Apr-05 17:15:07

we're in kent, wrotham to be exact, which is close to sevenoaks (its the nearest 'big' town i believe..)

TracyK Wed 06-Apr-05 18:38:45

start a thread with 'nurseries in kent' or something for this evening - bound to get some online.

lunarx Sun 10-Apr-05 20:22:32

thanks for the idea Tracey, i've just done that!

Katemum Sun 10-Apr-05 20:38:21

As for packing a bag, my nursery supplies nappies, wipes and food so I just have to send in a change of clothes, but not all nurserys do this. They should tell you what you need to know when you go to see them.

boaky Mon 18-Apr-05 21:17:25

pre-schools in bulphan/brentwood/horndon area-can anyone help with advice on what to look for and their own recommendations? thanksxx

PrettyCandles Mon 18-Apr-05 21:35:34

Haven't read the thread (and sent my two when they turned 2, so a little different) but here's what I found useful, FWIW:

Contact your council to get a list of nusreries

After you've talked to the nursery on the phone turn up to visit without making an appointment.

Spend as long as you like (even an hour or more) just sitting in a corner watching. How does the demeanour of the children and of the staff strike you? Is the area a generally happy one? Is there a sense of order in any chaos? How are distressed or bored children dealt with?

Use the toilets - do they smell clean as well as look clean?

Don't lend too much weight to the physical attributes of the place, as long as it's clean.

Ask what staff-turnover is like. Staff tend to stay longer at places where their needs are respected and where there is a good atmosphere. This affects the children very positively.

honeypot01 Tue 19-Apr-05 14:52:22

if your child doesnt attend the nursery you cant just turn up and expect to be able to sit and observe for an hr, initially you will have to make an appointment. When your child is there, you can pop in anytime you like without warning. You normally have a few settling in sessions to get your child adjuxted

PrettyCandles Tue 19-Apr-05 15:21:29

Honeypot, I did say "After you've talked to the nursery". Anyway, that's what I did, and it was the first of many things that particularly impressed me about the nursery I chose - when I called they said "Come whenever you like, no need for an appointment, just try to avoid lunch-time and nap-time if you possibly can.'

honeypot01 Tue 19-Apr-05 16:52:10

sorry prettycandles didnt mean to upset you, all the nurseries i went to thou said you can come to the open day which they hold regular and you can come in anytime but you cant just expect to stay in the room observing the staff, obviously its not going to be the same as if you weren't there. Wot sort of nurseries r uu looking at, state or private? my son goes to an Asquith court private one.

PrettyCandles Wed 20-Apr-05 13:55:07

I wonder whether it's anything to do with the fact that I didn't look at any 'chain' nurseries, all the ones I looked at were small independents.

donna388 Wed 18-May-05 12:49:03

I am just starting to think about going back to work and want to start looking for nurseries, does anybody know of any good nurseries in BIRMINGHAM around the following areas:
Northfield
Longbridge
Rubery
Rednal
West Heath
Barnt Green
Redditch
There seems to be so many now I dont know where to begin looking, I think word of mouth is probably the best way forward. My little girl is now 6.5 months.
Thanks

Chandra Wed 18-May-05 13:00:34

Adding to the things already said, I looked for clean non-cluttered places (for some reason I believe there's a relationship between how messy the room is and how careful they are with your child. It may be silly, but I noticed that the nurseries where you could see more children with long "things" running from their noses were the same ones who had not bothered to keep the room moderately ordered, and had lots of old and broken toys.

I thinks choosing one is a lot of a gut feeling. I liked DS's because it was clean, the staff seemed very confident, and because DS (then about 9m old) couldn't wait to go down my arms to sit with the other babies (he didn't do that in any other nursery we visited). I have not regretted my decision for a moment, he loves the place.

donna388 Wed 18-May-05 13:06:13

Dont suppose that nursery has a website or anything so I can take a look and see if there is one around my area?????????????
Does anyone know of any good chain nurseries also?????????

LunarSea Wed 18-May-05 16:21:53

Totally non scientific, but I'd be wanting to at least ask extra questions about anywhere which didn't have on their list of things you need to provide wellies and waterproofs! To put it a bit more simply ask them how much time the children get to spend outside. We saw some with virtually zero outdoor facilities (one 8' x 6' fenced in wooden deck between 40 kids!), whereas I think getting out and running around is actually very impotant.

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