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Pre-school conundrum

(6 Posts)
Lalamumtoone Fri 14-Oct-11 10:25:42

My 3.5 year old DD has been in a day nursery since she was 10 months and is very very settled there. We were offered some places at the nursery class at our local primary school which she started this September. She now goes to her private day nursery 2 days a week, for 2 mornings a week she goes to the nursery class with her best friend, but on a Friday she goes on her own.

Now she adores her private day nursery so no problem there. She adores pre-school with her best friend for 2 mornings so no problem there. The problem comes on the Friday when she has to go on her own. She is very brave on a Friday morning and she will go in and I settle her in to play (generally drawing) but she is starting to say she doesn't want to go and the settling in is getting longer and longer rather than shorter. She only cried for the first week but since then we had long chats about it and I ensure we have something nice for us both to do together in the afternoon.

When I pick her up she is buzzing and when I ask her what she has done or who she has played with she mentions one or two names or says she plays on her own. The nursery teachers say she has played really with different groups of children.

All the children seem to know each other as most went to the local toddler group (I couldn't take her as I work the day it is on) so lots of children already have established friendships.

I feel really guilty putting her into nursery school on a Friday as it's my day off and because she has begun saying she doesn't want to go and started waking up in the middle of the night on a Thursday night wanting cuddles, I wonder whether I should just take her out.

Any advice?

gabid Fri 14-Oct-11 14:15:57

She seems to rely very much on her friend. Could you go in with her on Fridays and stay with her until she is a bit more settled. And you could see who she plays with and encourage friendships by interacting with the children together.

We stayed with our DD (just 3) for a couple of weeks as she has never been away from us. Then we left her for 1/2 hour and now she doesn't seem to need us there at all.

MumblingAndBloodyRagDoll Sat 15-Oct-11 13:09:44

I think you are worrrying too much. At this small age, they are happy to mix and match a lot even if some DO already know one another. Is it possible you are making her anxious about friendships by asking too many questions? I know I did with my elder DD.

mummytime Sat 15-Oct-11 13:34:19

Start making friends with other people at Nursery, have play dates with the kids. Your DD needs to have more than one friend, she and this friend will not necessarily be friends all the way through school and thy both need to make other friends. Why don't you ask the leaders at the pre-school about how she interacts with other children, who she is friends with etc.
Kids of this age don't have real "friendships" as older children and adults do. They are only just learning to social skills to be able to interact with each other.

Lalamumtoone Mon 17-Oct-11 09:58:41

Hi thanks for the suggestions. when I picked her up from preschool she was buzzing and walked out with another little girl.

Reading back I can see how emotional I was getting and I know this can get passed onto her. So going to try and stop my anxiety rubbing off on her!

I do chat with the other mums at the gates and we live in a small village so we do bump into people when we go for walks and at the playground. So playdates can be the next thing that we suggest as we come to half-term.

I'm not too worried about the friendship she has with her 'best' friend as she has plenty of other friends that she has made at day nursery along with the other friends she has who we kept in touch with from maternity leave - also the preschool always make sure that when there are activities, they mix the children up to avoid 'exclusive' friendships.

Thanks again for the suggestions - I'm kind of glad she is going to preschool at our local school as I'll get all my worries out of the way now before she goes full-time next year!

MumblingAndBloodyRagDoll Mon 17-Oct-11 23:36:32

Glad you're feeling better....and know how you feel as I am over-anxious too! All I can say is that by the time shes in reception/year one it will all be diffrent. she sounds just fine! They dont really need playdates much at thi age...I think they're more useful at school tbh.

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