September is a time where there’s a lot of change around in nurseries and schools. Younger children are moving into older rooms and the pre-school children are moving up to ‘big’ school. Moving from your safe place in a nursery to a more structured school environment can be a really challenging time for some children and parents too. so its important to make sure all involved feel comfortable with the changes taking place and the process that it may entail.
Here at Daybreak we like to make sure the children are as prepared as possible for all transitions, we make sure that the children have sufficient visits at key times of the day into their new rooms and we also ensure that parents have been introduced to new key carers and shown around the new environment. For Children going off to school we like to make sure the children have met their new school teacher, we allow the children to have a practice at bringing in and eating a packed lunch and we provide opportunity for them to wear, and be proud of, their new school uniform too.
Jo, is one of our nursery managers, who has been with Daybreak for the last 12 years, she has seen both her children make their journeys through Daybreak and begin their time at ‘big’ school. With that in mind we have put together some questions to Jo to see how she and her family coped with the transitions.
1. Jo, both of your girls have made their journeys through Daybreak, how did you find their transitions into each of the different rooms throughout the nursery.
Yes, both of my girls have been part of the Daybreak family since they were babies, as Jo jokes she mentions things ran smoothly.
2. What were your main concerns about transitioning to a school environment e.g. How your girls would cope? How it would affect family life? How it would affect your working life?
All of the above, I was worried about the girls and how I would manage drop off and pick ups juggled with work life. With the girls being at Daybreak , I always knew where they were, what they had eaten and how they had been throughout the day, I took this for granted, as school feedback is completely different and their days are much shorter than a nursery day.
3. Moving onto a school environment is a very different process, how did your girls find it and did it effect you as a family? Do you think you found it any easier knowing the transition process that occurs within the nursery environment?
The transition from nursery to school is very different, I think the first time around it was the unknown and I felt anxious, but I did not show this to Antonia, my first daughter. I feel at Daybreak our transitions are very in-depth, a lot of personal plans are thought through, such as home visits and settles, which are suited to a parent and child’s needs. Where as at school there is a lot of paper work and it is not as personal to the child or adult.
4. Did you find the move to school easier with your second child? Was it difficult watching them grow into school children and not having babies/toddlers anymore?
Yes, definitely easier, as I knew what to expect with my second child. I found it hard that my children had gone from Daybreak and that they are no longer babies. However, I am now excited about their new experiences in life.
5. Your eldest has now moved onto secondary school, was that an easier transition to make as a family?
A daunting experience with it being unknown, she has been settled at secondary school for a year near now and is now formed good friendships. Now at secondary school, all we rely on is receiving school reports, which are not very in-depth, but they give us the information we need to know. School life is completely different, you cannot just phone or email just to check how your child is doing on the day. Where as at Daybreak, you have lots of communication and feedback throughout the duration of nursery.
Thank you for your answers Jo, good luck to you and your family in any future transitions.