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Is after school club a really Bad Idea in reception?

(22 Posts)
fadingfast Tue 22-Sep-09 23:03:01

DS has just started school. This is his first full week (we have had two weeks of part time hours and days and lots of juggling work). Plan from next week is for him to go to after school club on two days a week, the days DH and I both work.

I'm starting to wonder whether this is going to be all a bit too much for DS to cope with. Does anyone else use an after school club for reception-age children?

The other option would be for me to spread my hours over four instead of three days, but that would mean putting DD into nursery for an extra day (three instead of the current two, DH has one day at home). Financially we could just about manage an extra nursery day, but I feel it would be unfair for DD (17mo) to have to do three days of nursery, when DS only ever did two.

I know it is really tiring for children to start school, but once he has settled in will two days of after school be too much for him?

TheFallenMadonna Tue 22-Sep-09 23:07:37

DD went when she was in reception, every day in fact. She was one of 12 foundation stage children there, and they were well equipped to deal with them. I think it may have helped that she had both her older brother and her best friend there, but I suspect DD would have been happy there anyway. She's that kind of child really. As long as she has glue and paint, she's at home.

MollieO Tue 22-Sep-09 23:08:25

Ds started in after school club in reception and loved it. He had been with a CM previously and much preferred playing with his school friends and the bigger children than being with the CM. We started using the club after half term in order to give ds time to get used to being at school all day.

bigstripeytiger Tue 22-Sep-09 23:08:50

My DD just started school, and she goes to the afterschool club. She loves it. Its a couple of hours of playing football, running around, and socialising, which she enjoys, and because of the mixed age of children at the after school club she now has children in higher years at the school that she knows, and who know her, which I think is nice for her, and confidence boosting as she settles into the school.

I expect that it will depend on the individual child (and the after school club!), but I dont think that an after school club is something to avoid just because the child is in reception.

piscesmoon Tue 22-Sep-09 23:09:16

I have to say that I feel very sorry for them at that age-it is too long. I appreciate that some have to do it, and they get used to it, but if there is a choice it is better not to.

Spero Tue 22-Sep-09 23:10:03

I think it depends on the child and the nature of the club. I have to put mine in breakfast club but she is the ONLY reception child there and I don't think they really know what to do with her and she gets a bit upset.

If the after school club is quite gentle and suited for his age, can't see a problem.

TheFallenMadonna Tue 22-Sep-09 23:11:33

You have to look at your child, and the club, and make your decision based on that. Because children are different. I'd not have done it with DS BTW.

I'm not mad on making general judgments about these things.

fadingfast Tue 22-Sep-09 23:12:39

I don't think it has helped that I took him for a visit today to see where he would be going, and I have taken an instant dislike to the woman in charge. Perhaps a bit unfair when we were only there a short time, and there will be other staff there, but it has made me doubt the wisdom of the whole thing.

chubbymummy Tue 22-Sep-09 23:15:44

Ds is in reception and uses both before and after school club. I'd much rather be able to take him to school and pick him up myself but I have no choice really, I can't afford to give up work or even reduce my hours. He seems to enjoy it and the older children have been fantastic with him so far.

1dilemma Tue 22-Sep-09 23:20:47

mine go (but not every day so far, that's for next week)

it's pretty chilled
seems happier there than at school TBH

asleep in the Summerhouse yesterday when I picked up

beautifulgirls Wed 23-Sep-09 09:42:53

DD#1 just started reception class and goes to an after school club 2 days a week on my work days. The only issue I am having at the moment is her crying because she is not allowed to go every day hmm and I am doing my best to try and help her understand that she is lucky (?!!) to be allowed to do those two days at least. It does make me feel uncomfortable that she has such long days, but I am also now so much happier with the arrangement too given she obviously adores her time there. I am having to make up all sorts of lovely things for her to do at home after school on the other days now to try and have her excited to be home!!!!

brimfull Wed 23-Sep-09 09:54:05

my ds has always wanted to go to the after school club.

dilemma456 Wed 23-Sep-09 14:14:23

Message withdrawn

mumtolawyer Wed 23-Sep-09 19:57:08

My DD went to after-school club 5 days a week the summer term of nursery and ever since. It just wasn't an issue as she was used to full time nursery. She loves it - after-school is non-academic.

giantkatestacks Wed 23-Sep-09 20:00:07

My ds has been to the after school club 2 days a week since he was 4 and its a shorter day than he was doing at the day nursery.

He loves it and would go every day - mainly because its all Wii playing (which we dont have at home) and jam sandwich eating...

bigchris Wed 23-Sep-09 20:02:54

my ds went to breakfast and aftersch club twice a week from reception
he seems fine there but he says on one of the days he gets lonely because his mate isn't there sad
he does get more tired on those days but as others have said we have no choice

yellowvan Wed 23-Sep-09 20:06:44

Can you make it thur and fri so she's got the weekend to catch up with herself? How does the day length compare to nursery day length (or whatever she did in her preschool year). Prepare for her to be tired the first few weeks, she will get used to it.

dogonpoints Wed 23-Sep-09 20:17:29

dd1 went to the before and after school club three days a week at that age. It was fine.

GooseyLoosey Wed 23-Sep-09 20:19:55

dd and ds went when they were in reception and were not the only children from their class there. Needs must. They play lots of fun games and get to eat spaghetti hoop and baked beans on toast. On occasion they have asked me to go away and come back later.

mumtoone Wed 23-Sep-09 20:49:55

ds started in Reception last year and he goes to after school club. He seems to get on fine probably in part because quite a few of his year group go. He's now in year 1 and its the highlight of his day because he gets to run about and play. Some of his friends who don't go to after school club now ask to go.

fadingfast Wed 23-Sep-09 21:10:22

Thanks for all the positive comments. I think in an ideal world I would rather he didn't have to go at all, at least for the first year, but needs must and I suppose it is only 2 days. I guess it's a case of trying it out for a bit before making any hasty decisions.

I am finding the whole school thing a bit of a culture shock to be honest and I think it will take us all a while to get into the new routine.

AnnieLobeseder Wed 23-Sep-09 21:59:33

My DD1 has just started going to after-school club this week, as I've started a new full-time job. Job is great but I'm in bits about having both girls in full-time care. On the other hand, DD1 had a huge strop when I picked her up from school on Friday because she thought she was going to the after-school club! I asked her today if she's like to go to her friend's house one day next week instead, but she said she'd rather go to the club! I'm sure the novelty will wear off, but so far she loves it. I guess it helps that there is a whole pack of reception-age girls and a trampoline!

I can't see two days a week being a problem at all... he'll probably love it.

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