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2 Year Olds


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As part of our re-launch and expansion programme, from Easter we will be taking children from 2 years old on.

I have been thinking how do other preschools/ playgroups manage this?

Do they attend for the whole session?

Do you have certain times/days fro them?

How to you work it?

I ask these questions as i have just had my 2 year old nephew ( and his big brother) staying for the holidays and suddenly realised how many things will have to change in our routines as a result of having younger children in. At the moment we have pre school and reception in together, so we have a couple of big 5 year olds. I am begining to wonder if it is such a good idea.

Any advise?

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  • 2 weeks later...

We have been taking 2 year olds in at our pre-school for over 3 years now but we do try and encourage parents to only send them if they are developmentally ready. Of course most parents don't take any notice and send them anyway! Our little ones do cope very well after the first couple of weeks. They usually come for a two and half hour session twice a week and that seems enough. I wouldn't be too happy to have large five year olds in the same group though. Most of our children are between 2 an 3.11 as they all get syphoned off to nursery. Most of my staff including myself have had considerable experience in pre-school and we have a small cosy hall, we have often been described as homely!

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Hi

2.0 to 5.11 (possible) is a huge spread developmentaly and physically. Can you divide your room or arrange different sessions for the younger ones. However you work it you will need careful planing and differentiation

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hi elle, have done this before to get numbers up in a large room- ok but feel as though you have changed to a toddler room at times. if in a small setting i'm not sure if I would want to.

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We have taken children from 2 1/2 years olds since we opened and don't have any rules about how many sessions they do...we leave this up to the parent.

 

Sometimes they do find it difficult to settle and if after a while things have not improved and we have tried everything we can think of then the parents usually decide by themselves to wait until they are 3.....this has not happened very much!

 

All the children are in the same room as we only have the one room!!! We have been very lucky with our older ones who are so kind to the little ones and often help them with their coats etc. All activities are the same for all just adapted accordingly to the childrens' individual needs.

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I am registered to take children from 2 years old to under 6 years. We are in a church hall - just one very large room for all children. The same as playleader said, they should be developmentally ready. I ask parents of such young children to visit us quite a few times before their due starting date. This way I can see whether they are ready and able to join us.

We have some older children that enjoy looking after the young ones and help them with things but we also have a little girl that wants to "mother" them and takes over (too much)

We did take on a child in September, who, to be honest wasn't really ready. When we went back last week, after the Christmas hols, we could see the difference in her. Ideally looking at her now, she would have been better to have waited the extra term before starting - both from her point of view and ours.

There are some more 2 yr olds waiting to start after Easter - once again, the decision will be Pre-schools. I feel that some parents just can't wait to get the little ones off their hands - they tell us that they are ready for Pre-school and that they are bored at home !!!!!!!

 

Sue J

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Thanks for your comments. it is difficult to work this out.

As you said, Sue some are ready, some are not.

I am worried about 2 year olds staying for, what could be soon, 3 hours. we are based in the school and are involved in school life and it would mean changing most of our routines.( may not be a bad thing)

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We have children from 2 1/2 to 5 at our playgroup. However, 2 of our 5 sessions a week are for the 3 to 5 year olds only which works really well. These days are much quieter and we can plan slightly different things for these days which would be too challenging for the smaller children. :o

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It would probably work but you will need to remember to plan for the youner ones and as well as the older ones 1 to 2 sessions a week is usually enough for any 2 year old.

 

but some great thoughts here let us know how it goes when you are up and running

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I know I'm probably stating the obvious but please bear in mind the staff ratio of 1:4. This impacts us quite heavily when parents decide they want their child to come on a day when I already have 4 under 3's, as it triggers another member of staff without any way of covering staff costs! If only they came in 4's, how much easier life would be!!

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xD Yes, I think we will have to limit the sessions for the younger ones and on specific days. It does raise so many issues, not least staff numbers and also I think we will need to spend some money (which we don't have) on equipment. Maybe the government should be funding the youngest children as they cost more to accommodate in nursery? Sorry - politics. Not that I think young children should be in day care.

 

I will stop now before I dig myself in any deeper!

 

thanks for the input. :o

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I know I'm probably stating the obvious but please bear in mind the staff ratio of 1:4. This impacts us quite heavily when parents decide they want their child to come on a day when I already have 4 under 3's, as it triggers another member of staff without any way of covering staff costs! If only they came in 4's, how much easier life would be!!

Depends if you're the mother of the four under 3s, I guess, LJW :o

 

I was talking to a potential 'customer' yesterday whose little boy is in full day care at the moment and wants to make the transition to sessional when she gives up work to have her second child. I was explaining that I would really rather not take them under 2 1/2 but that it is hard not to give in to a parent who really wants their child to join! I think we're coming under pressure to take them in earlier and earlier, but I always look at each case individually to see if we can meet the child's needs. And I always set out to have no more than 3 under threes at a session so that our ratio for over 3s goes no higher than 1:6 (we operate on a highest ratio of 1:5 usually so we do have some flexibility).

 

Mind you, I do get caught out sometimes...

 

Maz

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:( Yes, I think we will have to limit the sessions for the younger ones and on specific days. It does raise so many issues, not least staff numbers and also I think we will need to spend some money (which we don't have) on equipment. Maybe the government should be funding the youngest children as they cost more to accommodate in nursery? Sorry - politics. Not that I think young children should be in day care.

 

I will stop now before I dig myself in any deeper!

 

thanks for the input. xD

Actually this is a valid point (about the funding) - especially given that my cynical view that the whole childcare agenda is driven by the Government's express desire to get mums out to work... (and ignoring the politics of the work mums do in the home because that's a given!)...

 

And to join in the digging - its hard to have high esteem about what we do sometimes when you hear the latest report showing how bad day care can be for our youngest children. At least we know we're doing our very best to meet the needs of our children - otherwise we wouldn't be engaged in this type of debate, would we? :o

 

Maz

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