In order to flourish at nursery, children need to feel safe, secure, loved and happy. The settling in process is very important in helping them to feel this way. We also want parents to have confidence in both their children’s well-being and their role as active partners with the Nursery.
The aim of our settling-In procedure is not to get children used to being at nursery – usually, they love having the space and the variety of toys to play with – but to get them used to their parents leaving them. Therefore they may need several sessions of you leaving and coming back so that they become confident that you will always come back for them.
If a child has a comforter then we would kindly ask you to bring that in too to help them with settling at the nursery.
All children are different, so our settling in procedure has to be flexible. We play it by ear and are guided by the needs of the child.
It goes something like this:
Day One: Bring your child to nursery and in the company of their key worker and yourself. Let them explore the nursery and choose what they want to play with.
Day Two: Bring your child, play with them with their key person for a little while (30 minutes or so), then smile and say, “Mummy/daddy’s just popping out now. I’ll be back soon.” Come back at the scheduled time. The staff from the nursery will call and inform you 30 minutes after you leave informing you on how your child is doing. If a child was crying inconsolably for any length of time, we would phone you and ask you to come back sooner.
Day Three: If Day Two goes well, that is, the child cries for a while but then stops and settles down, they should now be all right to be left for a whole morning or afternoon. If your child became very upset, we may need to repeat Day Two a few times until they become more confident.
If your child requires additional settles, this could be arranged, please speak to the senior staff in the nursery.
Smile a lot, be calm and confident yourself. Talk about what fun it will be playing at the nursery.