How to prepare your child for nursery

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Starting nursery is a big deal for little people and they might be a bit unsure about taking this first step. So, before you begin this new adventure, our childcare experts have created top tips on how you can start preparing for nursery together.

Join a pre-school class

When your child is suddenly surrounded by lots of other little people it can be a shock. So, a great way to prepare for nursery is to attend a toddler group or pre-school sports class. This will get your child used to the idea of being around others as well as developing their listening skills with other trusted adults.

At Gymfinity Kids you can book a free pre-school gymnastics class. Your child will get time to meet other pre-schoolers and get familiar with the nursey’s onsite gym facilities. You can also meet some of the coaches who will be delivering your child’s daily sports activity.

Use settling in sessions

Settling into a nursery usually takes a few weeks depending on the individual child. The time it takes for a child to settle into a new nursery can vary. So, it’s a good idea to take full advantage of nursery settling in sessions. 

Nursery settling in sessions typically begin with a shorter taster session followed by longer intervals of time spent at the nursery. Your child will steadily become more familiar with the environment. Their key person will be on hand to slowly ease them into their new daily routine too.

Our nursery team follows a thoughtfully designed settling in procedure and works with parents to ensure your child is gradually introduced in their own time. At nurseries by Gymfinity Kids we provide all the settling in session your little one (and you) may need.

Get prepared for the first day

Making sure you are prepared for the first day at nursery is a good idea. Get your child excited about their big day by helping them to organise their backpack.

At nurseries by Gymfinity Kids we provide parents with their child’s nursery uniform. This includes a short-sleeved polo shirt, navy blue jumper and our official nursery backpack. In addition to the uniform each child will receive their own 360ml water bottle, which we advise you to bring along.

Children must bring a change of uniform and are permitted to bring any comforters they would like. Comforters can be a soft teddy, favourite toy or blanket. Packing their backpack aims to encourage excitement about their first day at nursery.

Read a book

There are lots of books on starting nursery that we can recommend reading at home with your child. Choose a few to go through together and begin them a few weeks before starting nursery. Afterwards talk through the story and what the characters might be feeling. This is a great way to gage how your child might handle nursery and get them prepared for the idea of starting a new chapter.

Master a good goodbye

It’s important to remember that it’s only natural for children to feel nervous about being separated from their family. Children take different times to adjust. To be safe, we advise the following tear-taming tips for a good goodbye:

  • Arrive early, fed and well rested. Tired and hungry children are often more prone to tears when it’s time to leave. Why not start and early-to-bed early-to-rise routine and feed them a yummy breakfast.
  • Get excited and remain upbeat. Your positivity can make a huge difference in how your child feels, they’ll trust you to reassure them.
  • Bring along a comforter. This can be a teddy, favourite toy or blanket for them to keep hold of during their time at nursery.
  • Create a special goodbye. For example, you can give your child a kiss on their palm to ‘hold’ or sing a song together before leaving.
  • Resist the rescue. As upsetting as it might be, try your best to resist turning back if your child starts to cry. It’s quite understandable for your child to feel a little sad, but you don’t want to prolong their distress. If you would like to, you can wait a few minutes outside the room to ensure all is well before you leave.

With some patience, your little one will get into the swing of nursery and drop-offs will become much easier. Remember our team is always here on hand to help you through this process.

A parent’s who recently started their child at nurseries by Gymfinity Kids, said: “My son has settled in amazingly well, the team have gone out of their way to create activities around his dinosaur obsession. He loves going and is so content when we drop him off that he doesn’t notice us leaving. We are very pleased we found this nursery.”

If you have any questions about your child starting nursery or settling in, our nursery team is always on hand to answer any questions. If you haven’t already, you can book your personal tour here.