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I have a new three year old child in my nursery who is not yet toilet trained and has only just finished breast feeding. She is from an Arabic family. Mum insists on staying with her all session and I am allowing this at the moment to help her child settle in and to try to build up Mum's confidence. Her child is really lapping up all the activties available. She is not happy to let me deal with toileting, although I have gone through our continence procedures with her - they are very supportive.( thanks to everyone's advice on here) I am encouraging Mum to do an activity with other children as well, so that her child learns some idependence.

We had another chat on Friday and Mum told me that she always intends to stay as her daughter is very precious, and she lost a child a few years ago at the same age. I really want to support this Mum but also feel that she and her daughter need to become more independent of each other.

As our toilets are out of site of the Nursery room everytime Mum goes in there with her child one of us needs to follow as she is not CRB checked, and we have a policy that doesn't allow parents to be in there on their own, because of the other children. I am going to talk to the School Health Advisor re background, and some advice for both of us- in the meantime any helpful ideas folks?

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Uff... tough situation. I can't give any advice since our school's policy is very different (private). Certainly enough mum can't stay there anymore. Her attitude is overprotective. She needs counselling as soon as possible or she will end up affecting her own child. I can understand she feels fearful to loose another child, but she doesn't do any good to her child with this behaviour. Best wishes to all of you.

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As a pre-school supervisor I have been in the same position as you Jacquie. You will gain this parents confidence eventually but it may be a long slow process. I know it is a pain shadowing the parent when her child uses the toilet but if you explain to the parent the reason for this it will help her to gain more confidence in you.Would the parent be able to be responsible for an activity so she is not so able to be so protective of her own child?.The families Health visitor can make discreet enquiries about the need for councelling. or further councelling. Once the cild has passed the age when her sibling died the situation should improve.

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Hi Jackie.

You mentioned that the family concerned are Arabic. can I ask if they are recently arrrived in UK or how long/estbalished they are in this country? In other words do they have any experience of the Britsih School system? I only ask because I work with mostly Arabic families who are first generation in UK, often literally just arrived, adn their expericens of our country and culture will be very strange. This could affect the way the mum is repsonding.

It isnt uncommon in my expereicen for Arabic families to feel this way when their chidlren start nursery, or school, regardless of the issue over the death of the sibling.

I think as BJ said you have to work with the parent on this, taking small steps that will buld up trust so that mum feels happy to leave her child in your care. This may be through her 'helping' with some activities although this may be difficult for her, or it may be through very short periods away form mum..5 minutes even to start with.

sorry I dnt think Im expalining what I mean very well but I hope you get the gist...

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Hi Jacquie,

 

I also have had similar experiences of parents coping with the "seperation" process.

 

I agree with Mundia that there may be cultural issues here that need support. Last year I had an Arabic family and mum stayed for nearly a term, she particularly enjoyed helping at the book area, so that she could practice her english by reading the childrens books.

 

I also had a Dad ( white/british family) who found it difficult to leave his son, he used to stay for about 50% of each session, gradually leaving earlier each term, he took nearly 3 terms to leave his son for the whole session ( his son started at age 2 though). He left for school this summer and dad sent me a wonderful email thanking me and my staff for making him feel so welcome ( which he felt some other settings may not have done) his son left for school as a confident, assured child ready for his next transition. During his last term his parents asked a friend to bring him to preschool, who he left eagerly at the door without so much as a wave. :D

( the child appeared to understand the "seperation" and "anxiety" need of his dad, and therefore tending to be more clingy when he bought him to preschool)

 

You need to weigh up whether the parents attendence stops the child becoming fully involved in the daily practice, or hinders their involvement. If the parents are insecure then the child will pick up on this.

 

In my area we have an inclusion officer linked to the early years department of the LEA, who help with this kind of situation. Is there such a person in your area?

 

From your comments you appear to be offering a service which is considerate of both child and parent, this is the most important, to provide for the "whole" family.

 

Good luck, let us know how you get on.

 

Peggy

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Mum is second generation. I was really pleased today as she has obviously taken on board what I have said to her. She spent the weekend beginning to toilet train her daughter. She has much older children and one (15) wants to work in child care. Today we gave her some preparation to do, and although she was nervous at first she did well and enjoyed herself. We talked again aout her staying all the time and agreed that she would go for a walk for a little while tomorrow. I am going to offer a CRB check s she is actually showing potential in working with the other children. Today she backed off from her daughter and was very sensible. Her child came running in , joined in and wanted a turn at singing a song in front of the others even 'tho she didn't know any. As my NNEB said we are there to support the parents and this Mum needs us.

I was really pleased today and felt we had acheived something. What a delight these nursery children are, watching the learning is fascinating.

Thanks for your advice everyone.

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I did not read well your first post and did not see that she is Arabic. Each case is different. Some of my Arabic mums have been overprotective and others not. Anyway, I am so glad that things are coming out better for all of you. Well done JacquieL !!!

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Great news Jacquie :D

 

In the past I have found that if I post on the forum about a problem I have , within a few days things just turn around and get better. Spooky eh :o

 

Peggy

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Thanks so much everybody. Mum went to help in elsewhere school today for an hour and I talked to her about CRB forms. She is going to leave her child tomorrow and let her settle. Her daughter is enjoying using the toilet and when I gave her a sticker she then went again and again so we had no wet clothing. Mum is really great and shoudl turn out to be an asset so I am feeling sooo happy about this. Hey Peggy I will post all problems if they get solved just by posting on here.

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Great news Jackie! :D

 

I actually have almost the opposite problem as the nursery where I am supplying doesnt encouarge parents to stay for very long at all and the new child today was very distressed after about 30 mins without mum. Not sure what tomorrow will bring except headaches if he continues to scream at such volume!!

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