First Day at Nursery! Mama Sophie, Education Consultant at Gabbitas, Shares Her Tips For Making The Whole Process So Much Easier
Where did time go? What happened to the little baby I held in my arms and rocked to sleep? They are walking and talking and off to nursery!
The first few days of nursery are undoubtedly one of the hardest for parents. One is obliged to have a huge amount of trust in virtual strangers who are about to take care of your most precious little person. It is also the first foray into the next 18 years of education and probably the first time one has thought about education since they were a student themselves. However, the experience is most likely going to be much harder for you than it is for your child. When I asked my sons aged 10 and 9 whether they could remember their first day at the nursery?, the answer was a flat “No”! I know that is not the case for all children but for a lot it is a wonderful new adventure and the next stage of discovery.
Many nurseries have a gentle approach to leaving your child with them. Quite often you are allowed to stay with them for some time on the first few days and if you are not actually in the classroom, you can stay on site in case your child is having difficulties settling in. Be assured that the nursery will contact you if your child is very unhappy. It is in nobody’s interest to let a child be continually upset.
Lots of children walk into nursery without a backward glance which is almost just as upsetting for a parent! For them, this is a whole new world of exploration and new toys. What fun, particularly in this weather when the confines of home can get a bit limited. The confident child can wobble later on and don’t be surprised if they do. The change of routine can be disruptive and it does take a while to get used to.
Top tips for the first day/week:
- Hold your child’s hand and introduce yourself and your child to their teacher. Explain to your child that this is their teacher and that they will look after them. The child will see that you know the teacher and have approval from you that they are not a stranger.
- When you say goodbye, tell your child that you will be coming back to pick them up.
- Don’t make it a long goodbye. Short and sweet is best.
- Be brave. Try and save your tears for when you have left the nursery.
- Keep busy. Have something organized or someone to meet up with as soon as you have dropped your little one off.