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Hi,

I am a Foundation Stage Teacher and also a committee member for my children's nursery. Their nursery takes children from 2 to pre school and there seems to be no differentation in the age groups (they are all in 1 room). I recently asked at a committee meeting if they needed to review how the children arrive in the morning as they now take 2 year olds and 2 year olds are very different to 4 year olds! They expect all children to self register and then sit on the carpet which is hard for the children who are on time as they sometimes have to sit for over 15 mins before they start (I witnessed this when I visited with my other child). They used to then do show and tell for 20 mins every morning, they have just reduced this to one morning a week (which is better). The children do get used to this but is it me or is it unreasonable to expect a 2 year old to arrive in the same way. Most 2 year olds arrive in tears and it makes it very hard for the parents to seperate from the children as impossible to get them to settle on carpet. Their response was "they couldn't treat the younger children differently as the older children wouldn't understand!" Personally I feel that they should not be expected to sit on the carpet for such a long time anyway, my foundation stage class certainly don't! I am worried that they really don't understand young children. How do other nurseries welcome the children in the morning? Am I being unrealistic? I don't know if to press this issue further as I know a lot of other parents aren't happy with this.

Many thanks

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Pre-school 2-4.11

 

ours all come in self register (some with help!!) then free-play for about 15ms or so until all children have arrived.

When then do a short whole group registration, by now the youngers are settled-all parents gone. we all sit together at same time and younger one often sit with happily with adult. If they're very new we jsut let them play. We then 'play it by ear' with show and tell etc. sometimes the younger ones just drift away and play - however if the circle time is fun and interesting they often stay.

the amount time depends on the children- but we try and keep it short............although at the moment we have a lot of older ones, and today we were all shocked to note that over 20mins had past and not one child had moved or figgeted once they were all so engrossed - the teacher that gets this lot is going to be well happy they are such an attentive bunch!!

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Hello, :(

 

we are a pre school and take children from aged 2 to 4yrs, max of 30 per session, they are all in one room and all arrive at the same time in the morning.

 

We have found that after a couple of weeks the younger children are quite able to self register in the morning, but then all the children go straight into free play.

 

The only time during the day that they all have to sit together, is 10mins at end of session for a story/singing/action songs etc.

The younger children are normally worn out by then, so can usually manage to sit and listen for this short space of time.

 

I wouldn't dream of making them come in in the morning and sit down for that amount of time :o , could you not suggest that they re evaluate how the children come in each day? xD

Chicken

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I would be pretty horrified. You're right to feel it's innappropriate. 2 yr olds need to be 2 yr olds and not mini pre schoolers.

 

Their response seems to imply that the older children aren't staying at the carpet because they enjoy it but because they are being compliant - if it was a fun and enjoyable experience it wouldn't make a difference whether the two yr olds were staying or not

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Thanks so much for your replies. I think they are in the habit of doing it as it's what they have always done. Maybe I will consider how to bring it up again. They are due for OFSTED and I wonder what OFSTED would make of it. To be honest I was quite horrified when I visited with my youngest recently as they spend a lot of the 3 hours being expected to 'sit!' Snack time takes close to 40 mins of 'sitting!'

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Last question........their other 'come back' was that they couldn't do it for Health and Safety as parents drop off and walk through room to exit. However there is a member of staff on each door. To me it makes sense for children to enter and go straight into free flow. Parents get a chance to see what activities their child is doing (as I'm sure most forget by the time they return home!), it allows parents to leave their child happy as engrossed in an activity. I can't see how it is Health and Safety if it is managed correctly as most parents have walked through within 5 mins of doors opening!

I don't want them to feel I am interferring but at the same time I feel it is not benefiting the children. It is a committee run nursery so I feel that it is our right to raise it if others aren't happy too.

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Unfortunately some settings do stick to their routines regardless. Stick up for what you believe in and maybe you can actually get them to re-evaluate what they do and change. I think it is so sad to see children of this age being made to sit for long periods of time for no good reason other than 'thats what we do'. :o

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Last question........their other 'come back' was that they couldn't do it for Health and Safety as parents drop off and walk through room to exit. However there is a member of staff on each door. To me it makes sense for children to enter and go straight into free flow. Parents get a chance to see what activities their child is doing (as I'm sure most forget by the time they return home!), it allows parents to leave their child happy as engrossed in an activity. I can't see how it is Health and Safety if it is managed correctly as most parents have walked through within 5 mins of doors opening!

I don't want them to feel I am interferring but at the same time I feel it is not benefiting the children. It is a committee run nursery so I feel that it is our right to raise it if others aren't happy too.

 

At the playgroup I ran a few years back we had a member of staff positioned at a door for the initial dropping off time and then doors were locked. As you say, these things just need to be managed and worked around.

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I don't have my reception class sitting for over 20 minutes ever!!! (Apart from a share and shine session when a boy was talking about a star wars lego model and everyone had so many questions!)

 

What a waste! Think of all the wonderful things they could be doing in that time !

 

S

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Guest pamgreen

Our children go to their key person group when they arrive 3 groups are a mixture of 3 & 4 year olds. the other group is for the two year olds. They also return to these groups for story at the end of the session. The two year olds sit for a very short time and then they play. it works really well for us. The rest of the session children all play alongside each other. What ever happened to the unique child

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We've recently changed our system so our experience might be useful.

 

We now have a ten minute drop off time, those who are early have a bit of free play time. Then when all or most children have arrived, there is a very short (5-10 mins max) group gathering time on the carpet. We ring a little bell when it's time for this to start, which the children love. The group time is just simply to explain to the children what activities there are that day, or to share anyone's news. It was suggested to us that we might try smaller groups, split by age, but it wouldn't have worked staff wise. We find it's good to have this 'moment' together at the start of the session, but any children who it didn't suit would be supported by staff to go and do something else. (Having said that, most of ours are now 3 and they don't start with us until 2 and a half).

 

Parents drop off and then leave by the main door. We have a member of staff positioned there signing people in and out. Following advice from here, we now lock the door when we start that group time, and anyone who is late has to ring the bell. We've emphasised being on time and most parents now drop off punctually.

 

This all means we can get straight down to free flow really promptly at about 9.45 or 9.50am. That wouldn't be possible for us if lots of children arrived late, as we have to free flow through that same main door.

 

HTH.

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we have about 40 2-4 year olds per morning/afternoon session, and as a full Daycare Nursery we have some children who are there all day. For the 9-3.30 bit we tend to run it like this

7.30-8.45 - breakfast/freeplay etc (all together)

9am- funded children arrive , all children initially gather in one room - then two year olds go into second room for register singing and some planned play whilst the pre-schoolers do register/circle time. (about 15 mins)

9.15 - children then split into their keyworker groups ( there is a mix of 2-3-4 year olds in each group) to do focussed activity and plan where they are moving onto next

9.40 - child led play/activities (all together) - snack is run freeflow in the snack shack from 10-10.45 so the children can go when they choose and spend as long or as little time as they need there.

11- tidy up and back in keyworker groups for review

11.15 - split back into two groups - two year olds in second room for short storytime/singing/ singing games whilst 3-4's have a letters and sounds session and story.

11.30 - funded children go home and others get ready for lunch

 

Afternoon session runs from 1-3pm the same.

We did try keeping them all together but found the twos concentration and 'sitting' skills were much shorter so staff made the decision to do it this way and it works well. :o

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Last question........their other 'come back' was that they couldn't do it for Health and Safety as parents drop off and walk through room to exit.

 

Hope you don't mind me asking but why do parents walk through the room to drop off and exit? I'm just trying to get a picture of how this would work in my head. Is the cloakroom on the other side of the room and parent's assist their children to hang up coats etc, or do they have a one way system where they come in through one door and leave through another?

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In our setting they all enter at the smae time but go into free flow play inc outdoor play, so if they want to come straight in with their coat on and go outdoors instead of hanging it up they can! we do this for 20 mins then we all sit down together and have a short (5mins) carpet session where we call the register. this works well for us as children coming into an exciting environment with so many new toys and experiences find it hard to be told to sit and wait! It can often help with distracting and settling in children too. Funny enough a parent recently suggested we start with carpet time but we are not happy to do this given the success of how we do it currently.

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