DD starting nursery - tell me what to expect please(11 Posts)
My DD (10 months) is starting nursery soon and has a few settling in sessions before that. She is a very high needs/demanding baby, so please prepare me for what to expect?
My son started in September at almost 1, he does 2 days a week. I really struggled at first as he would cry at drop off, he would have stopped before I got to the front door so seconds after I left but it was awful and one morning I cried too. However the staff were well prepared for this and ignored my tears and looked after him.
Some toddlers went straight in and played and I could never imagine DS doing that but he does now, if his Gran drops him off he just plays and that's that but for me he runs back and I then pick him up and give him to his key worker and he is fine with that.
I really enjoy the themed days they do and getting his paintings, also reading his diary after each session.
The staff were excellent at listening to my worries about him getting hungry (he was never one for milk) and also my regular phone calls those first weeks.
I still find it hard, but I then I find all 4 of my working days away from him hard.
There was one day when his diary said he had cried a few times and I got upset but I remind myself that babies cry! all the staff (even the cook!) comment on how cuddly he is and how they all get lovely cuddles off him, so I know he is having lots of attention.
He also eats things he won't entertain at home and drinks a cup of milk there occasionally.
Expect her to catch all the bugs going for at least the next 6 months!
It's really difficult to generalise as all children (and nurseries) are different. I was warned to steel myself to months of a crying dd clinging to my leg but after a couple of weeks she went in happily. FWIW:
- Make sure you're happy with the nursery. (There are other threads in the Childcare section giving good advice on finding a nursery).
- Do chat to your dd's key worker. Ask qus about dd's day, if you've any concerns, voice them. Good nursery staff arwe always willing to answer qus, discuss any issues.
- If your dd will be at nursery more than a couple of days a week, try to follow the nursery nap routine at home so there's some consistency.
- Be prepared your dd will get some knocks and bruises once she's on the move. She would at home too but it's easy to worry more when they're out of sight.
- There will be times when you have the inevitable forms to sign because dd has been bitten/hit or has been biting/hitting. It's all part of growing up.
- If you get the chance, chat to the other mums. It's a good way to find out if there are concerns about the nursery or if staff are willing to do some babysitting (often outlawed by the nursery though).
- Put old/cheap clothes on dd that you don't mind being ruined. My dd regularly arrives at nursery wearing paint stained clothes.
Try not to worry, most of my friends with toddlers use nurseries and all have had positive experiences. Having said that I've certainly seen some nurseries that I wouldn't have been happy to use so make sure you're comfortable with the one you've chosen.
Agree they will get every bug going, nearly everyone at my work who comes back after mat leave has to take leave almost immediately because of a sick baby.
Assuming you've looked round and know their routine, then I don't really forsee any problems.
Nurseries are used to all types of children and in my experience are pretty good at getting them into a routine pretty quickly. You might find that the high needs / demanding baby relaxes a bit!
Prepare yourself for your DD to become very attached to a carer. It might smart a bit to watch your child all excited to see someone else even though you know it's a good thing.
Prepare to catch everything that's going yourself too.
Prepare to watch your child be significantly less high needs for someone else, than they are for you - that was a
You will probably find drop-offs for the first couple of weeks quite upsetting cos your baby will probably cry when you leave. However, DS (started at 11mo, now 16mo) sson got into the habit of crying for aruond 30 seconds when I handed him over to his key worker but then when i peeked through the window 1 minute later his is always smiling eating breakfast.
Babies are much more adaptable than adults - your little one will settle in quickly and be fine. I foujd it helped to chatter away to DS as we got into nursery and I was takinmg his coat and shoes off about all the fune things he might do that day (painting, playing with cars - just make it up!)...it helped keep my tone of voice light and happy even when i was worried about him getting upset.
My DS was/is very demanding and a high needs baby too....I am now back at work 4 days per week and my god, I am much happier as a result!!!! And so is he: honestly his mood and grumpiness got so much better almost instantly when he started nursery! i think he was bored at home with boring old mummy! We enjoy the time we do have together so much more now - both of us!
DS loves his nursery and is so happy when I pick him up every day (i hide and observe him every day and he is always having a whale ofa time). And I love being an adult and diong a non-baby related job. It's a win win.
You will cry, they will cry, but before you know it'll all be fine and I'm sure she'll have a wonderful time!
Thanks everyone, all very reassuring!
Bot, I'm expecting my DD to enjoy it there too because I think she is bored with me at home,
My two adored nursery, right from the start.
I felt a bit wobbly and "empty armed" at first, but it quickly became part of our lives. Not too many bugs, either. Very positive experience for us.
If you can, I'd suggest you do longer than 2 weeks settling in. Your nursery may be different but it wasn't until we started settling in that I discovered the free sessions we're only 30 mins, an hour, 90 mins then 2 hours. From there, she was supposedly settled in.
I wasn't comfortable going from 2 hours straight to 10 hour days 4 times a week; so I started her 2 days per week and have been building up her length of day. (Also gives me some time off before I launch back into work!). She did 7 hours today (and I got a load of jobs done around the house and had a shower without singing 10 Green Bottles!!). She's settling in really well - the staff all love their Little Blankie cuddles.
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