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Would you push for part time reception?

(61 Posts)
Worriedlisa Thu 18-Feb-16 08:46:55

Long story short as can't find other thread, my daughter is an October baby, very bright and loves learning however is a shy sensitive child who has always struggled being separated from me.
We have had to stop the full day at pre school ( started this September past to ready her for school this year ) as she was tired and emotional by 1 and was falling asleep or just crying wanting to come home.
We have now reduced her to 2 mornings a week and even that she struggles with as she just doesn't enjoy things where I'm not there.
She does ballet / gymnastics and swimming lessons and even there where I am in sight occasionally she will cry and need a hug or contact for her to be able to carry on.
The school she will go to start all children full time from day 1, no matter when they're born.
However I know my rights and I'm aware until January 2017 she isn't required to be in full time education however I don't think deferring the entry completely will help, friendships will have been made and she will be the only new child but is it possible she could go part time until before or after lunch for the first term?
I'm a stay at home mother so luckily that's not a concern with childcare, I'm just struggling to think of what to do for the best, especially as the headteacher is very straight to the point and really dislikes the part time issue so I already know I'll have a fight on my hands sad

Pipbin Thu 18-Feb-16 08:53:07

I teach reception. As a rule most of our children start all day everyday, however there is the option of doing mornings only.
Would that be a possibility?
As you say she is not compulsory until January so it is up to you really.
Half days would be my thought.
Talk to the teacher about it and keep them in the loop.

ReggaeShark Thu 18-Feb-16 08:55:25

Send her full time but drop the extra curricular activities until she adjusts. She'll just miss too much if she goes part time (if that's even possible). She won't be the only sensitive, clingy child in the class and it's not as if she's an August birthday.

Chippednailvarnish Thu 18-Feb-16 08:59:46

You're sounding like you're setting her up to fail, why not try and see how she goes? It's months to go, things change all the time with kids.

Berthatydfil Thu 18-Feb-16 09:05:14

Yes drop the other activities or only do them on a weekend.
She can't have you around all the time when she does go to school full time so She dies need to get used to the idea of being left. All the other children will be going full time and it is likely this will single her out. She may find it more difficult to make friends as the other children will be there all day/everyday. If she's shy anyway this may make it more difficult. She will also miss out on quite a bit of learning activities as well.
As a pp has said she's quite old in the cohort. 6 months is a long time if I were you I would be encouraging her to be independent from you in her other activities too - the seeking you out for a hug during dance etc may be sweet at 3 but at 5 the teachers or leaders will be getting irritated by the disruption to the class and to all the other children.

mrz Thu 18-Feb-16 09:07:24


FellOutOfBedTwice Thu 18-Feb-16 09:11:41

I'm afraid this is one of those things you just have to suck up. She's at the older end of the year, she's got to go to school. Sorry OP but that's just how it is.

Chillywhippet Thu 18-Feb-16 09:16:12

One of my DDs had Wednesday afternoons and Thursday all day off for the whole of reception. Technically she should have gone full time in summer term but neither the head nor I mentioned it.
She was happy to go back in Friday as it was chip day. I found with mine that they are really tired by Thursday.
She's 14 now. Doing really well at school and socially, still great friends with someone from that reception class.

Another one of mine started state school in year 2 as very anxious prior to that. Went part time to kindergarten in year 1. She's at uni now.Really skilled socially too. Lots of friends.

Itisbetternow Thu 18-Feb-16 09:17:30

I'm afraid that your D will be one of the oldest in her year. There will be children there who are just 4. I'm not saying that is right but I'm afraid that you need to let go. She has to go to school and by delaying full time you will make her stand out from her friends. It is hard with first child but they do manage without mummy. She does have a lot of outside activities so perhaps stop those until she is settled at school. Us mummy's do think our children are unique but they are not and lots of children are clingy, tired, sleepy when starting school but as I said she is nearly 11 months older that some of the other babies.

Worriedlisa Thu 18-Feb-16 10:22:05

Thanks for your replies.
I know she is one of the very eldest but that doesn't alter her personality!
She's not my first by the way, I have a son a few years older, also a winter born who did 2 full days at pre school for the year before school and then started school full time from day 1.
I do worry she will miss out on a lot as I'm not sure when all the phonics happen in the day and I'm also concerned about friendship groups being formed without her but the head has made it abundantly clear she isn't for part time hours therefore I would need to inform them as soon as she is allocated a place which isn't very far away!
Something about it being very difficult to go from full time back to part time as oppose to starting part time and increasing, maybe something to do with funding I'm not sure:
The activities we do are on weekends apart from ballet on a Wednesday as she is only at pre school 9-12 Mondays and Fridays now.
I don't think she's even a particulary insecure child, she just really enjoys being close to me which feels natural to is although I'm aware not so much when she's meant to be at school 5 times a week full time sad

mouldycheesefan Thu 18-Feb-16 10:23:57

You have 7 months to work in her confidence and doing things without you, spending time with other people without you etc. As a parent part of our role is to give them independence and being stuck to mummy all the time does them no favours. Does she get looked after by anyone else without you e.g her dad, relatives, friends etc? Will she stay with a babysitter etc.
They do so much fun stuff in reception it would be a real shame for her to miss out and it may make settling and making friends harder as she wouldn't be there some of the time.

SellFridges Thu 18-Feb-16 10:27:09

I would gradually increase her time at pre-school over the next few months. You need to work on her confidence, rather than allowing her to skip things because she would rather be with you.

cestlavielife Thu 18-Feb-16 10:40:43

"she just doesn't enjoy things where I'm not there. "
how do you know if you not there? is she putting on a show for you because she knows it makes you feel good to know you are needed?

that sounds cruel and i apologise in advance but you do need to look at how you are working on her confidence. and how much you are helping or not?

do you have other things in your life?
are you confident or anxious?
is she your last child and is it that you are reluctant to let her go?
does she do other things with her siblings and without you?
is she happy to go out with daddy?
can she do more things with dad and with other people?
can you make sure she knows that you are fine without her?
is she actually worried about leaving you on your own for some reason?
can you try being completely out of sight for her ballet/swimming let her know you will be back after the session and not during as you need to "go to the shops" or whatever? so she focuses on her lessons not on you?

what about at home is she ok playing on her own without you for ten minutes/half hour/longer?

if she is genuinely anxious etc start with books like "the huge bag of worries"
"What to Do When You Worry Too Much: A Kid's Guide to Overcoming Anxiety"

uhoh1973 Thu 18-Feb-16 10:50:53

Sorry to ask the obvious but is it you or she that is clingy? ;-) Is she also clingy with her Dad? Can he start taking her to stuff?

Worriedlisa Thu 18-Feb-16 10:54:52

I'll try to answer all questions.
No I'm generally a very happy go lucky person aside from this one issue!
My character is much more that of my sons, I was rarely anxious as a child, worked in quite high powered and pressured jobs pre children and am not unnerved easily.
I have parented them exactly the same and did the same routines with both.
At home she is loud, chatty, funny and bright, she has been toilet trained since 2 years old and is very independent in lots of ways such as insisting she completely dresses herself each morning, can tie her own laces and ride a bike with no stabilisers, things my son took far longer to be able to do.
She plays well with her brother or alone when we are home, we meet lots of friends and she is very sociable in that respect.
When I said she doesn't like being apart from me that's what the pre school staff and instructors tell me when I collect her as well as her.
She is very happy to be left with my husband as well as both sets of grandparents for the odd time here and there although we don't live very near either set so it's not very regular.
No sleep issues either; doesn't ask to come into our bed or anything like that, trots off to her own room ( which she asked for last year as oppose to sharing with her brother ) and goes off to sleep.
It's difficult as she's very confident in every way until she has to be separated from me and then it all goes to pot

Worriedlisa Thu 18-Feb-16 10:58:47

No I'm not clingy, we instilled lots of confidence into both of our children as we were always aware how fast school will come around. Dad can't come to weekend lessons as he works weekends although does sometimes come to gymnastics with us but not on his own as I meet a friend there so it was something for our children to do together.
I'm getting the overall vibe that I need to just start her full time and run with it

BackforGood Thu 18-Feb-16 11:00:15

I wouldn't - I think you would be setting her up to fail, tbh.
I also think she'd do better in pre-school if she went every day (or at least 4 mornings a week. the fact she has big gaps between each stay doesn't make for easy settling.
The best thing in Reception is to do what all the other dc in the class are doing, or they will miss out so much.
I think it makes sense to drop 'extra curricular activities' as they don't really need those at this age and many dc are tired in Reception Autumn Term.

cestlavielife Thu 18-Feb-16 11:01:38

she is happy to be separated from you for grandparents/dad...sow aht is it about school/ballet/swimming?

ask her to draw it - eg have a drawing session everyone draws "home" "family" then ask her to d raw swimming lesson/ballet/nursery

or role play with her dolls have them go to nursery/ballet where does she put mummy? what is mummy doing?

use some ideas from the huge bag of worries or what to do book

you need to figure out what she is thinking and why she is anxious in those scenarios - you cant ask her directly so try and draw it out in play

Claraoswald36 Thu 18-Feb-16 11:01:51

You need to build her confidence and independence. At the moment you sound like you are going to make it harder for her by being awkward with the school. I think reducing pre school was the wrong thing to do. You have set a precedent there.

uhoh1973 Thu 18-Feb-16 11:18:39

I agree with Backforgood I would go for 3-4 mornings per week at pre-school and build up to 5 mornings a week. Probably the more she is there the more she will bond with the other children and enjoy herself. You can take her home before/after lunch for a sleep if she still needs it and build up from there.
Our son has always been happy to go to nursery as he has been going since he was 1 and initially his sister was there at the same time in the same room with him (its a teeny tiny nursery so they are all in 1 room). So he's never found it stressful. However recently we have reduced it to 1 day a week as I have lost my job and now (aged 2.5) he says he doesnt want to go! I think its because he is a bit 'out of the loop' with the other children and doesnt go enough to fit in! Hope this makes sense. Build up to 5 mornings a week and take it from there. I wouldnt get too worried about school yet (its 7 months away). Just get your place and take it from there.
It seems unprofessional if the nursery staff are telling you she is not happy to be without you.. I havent heard that one before!

Claraoswald36 Thu 18-Feb-16 11:24:35

Uhoh I agree - nursery are fuelling the op anxiety when they should be settling the child.

neolara Thu 18-Feb-16 11:30:24

My dd is a July birthday and I was sure she would struggle when she hit full time school. Nope. She was absolutely fine. It may all be OK so I wouldn't go into battle yet.

freddiethegreat Thu 18-Feb-16 11:33:56

I will go against the grain here. I am a YR teacher. Every year we have one or two children who don't do f/t and I have never known it make a difference to friendships etc UNLESS there were underlying social issues. I find it works better to miss one day a week, rather than be picked up early though, it's then not really any more obvious to the other kids than absence due to illness. And whatever school tells you, it makes no difference to attendance until they are CSA. We do insist on f/t once they are CSA but that extra few months can make all the difference to these little ones. Yes, others will be tired/anxious and yes, good schools can & do adapt to support this, but it doesn't change the fact that it's easier for the child not to be excessively tired/anxious in the first place. But please bear in mind that my personal view is that children start formal schooling too early in this country anyway.

ReggaeShark Thu 18-Feb-16 11:35:30

What you say about your DD in your last post makes me think she'll be absolutely fine at school if you allow her to be.

AntiquityReRises Thu 18-Feb-16 11:37:39

Why not home educate for a while?

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