The decision to send your child to a Nursery (or any childcare provider), is a big one. There are so many choices and each one is different. And then there is also the question of whether a Nursery is the right setting for me and my child....aaarghhhh! So where did I start?
For me (and my children) it started with looking at our needs and we ended up choosing a Nursery* setting (to start off with) for both of my children because 1) I needed them to go from a young age, 2) I needed long days/specific hours and 3) I liked the fact that they could potentially stay at the same setting until they reached preschool/school going age.
After a quick Google search and a general look around at websites and Facebook pages, I made a list, got opinions, and organised visits with the ones I was interested in..... With challenges of this past year many settings do not allow ‘in person’ visits but do still ask them as some parents have been sent videos and had guided tours ‘out of hours’.
My daughter, Lily, went to an aptly name Nursery called ‘Lilliput’ (unfortunately this setting has since closed): it had a huge outdoor space and garden, the staff were friendly, and she had so much fun there until our needs changed.
My son, Owen, currently attends Let’s Explore Day Nursery and loves it. He started in their Baby (Sea Cadets) room and shortly before his 2nd birthday, moved up to their Toddler’s (Jungle Explorers) room.
He settled in right away and the staff are great. I especially enjoy seeing the male managers getting involved and being good role models for all the children. The space is well thought out, with a huge variety of toys and an all-weather, purpose built outdoor area.
They follow the Early Years curriculum, supporting every child’s development through a variety of activists and plenty of free play.
*By Nursery I mean a childcare setting where children, as young as a few months old, are cared for, usually in various age dependent rooms, until they reach school going age. Their opening hours are generally quite long, and any government funding can go towards your monthly fees. They also operate during school holidays.