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The First Weeks

The introduction into long day care can be difficult for children and parents. Children’s welfare and happiness are the priority for Educators when welcoming new children to the Service and when assisting the family to settle into the Service environment. It is recognised that families needs will vary greatly in the orientation process and individual needs will be met as best is possible.

The following outlines some helpful hints for parents on settling their child into care:-

  • Make sure you familiarise your child with the environment and the people in the environment (children and adults) by coming in for visits before commencing care.
  • Ease your child into care with short stays to begin with.
  • Provide a favourite toy, blanket or comforter to support your child when they are separating from you or settling to sleep. This can help your child feel more secure.
  • If your child is unsettled, short visits with you will help your child to gain trust with an unfamiliar environment. These visits can be made on a day when your child is not booked to attend.
  • Interactions between Educators and parents or Educators and other children can produce positive role models and be reassuring. This experience can help to establish trust in an unfamiliar setting.
  • Try to talk at home about child care. Mention the names of the Educators and other children. Talk about the things the child will be able to do at child care that are fun and enjoyable.
  • Talk to the Educators about your child, for example, what they like to do; successful ways of settling them to sleep; foods they like and dislike and so on. This helps Educators to get to know your child.
  • When leaving your child it is best to make sure you say goodbye and then leave. Hesitating and not going after you have said your goodbyes, if a child is upset, only confuses them. Reassure your child that everything is alright and you will return later, this can help them to settle.
  • It sometimes helps to establish a routine when leaving. For example, giving your child a cuddle and giving them to a Educator or sitting down with them for a short play or reading a book together then leaving.
  • At first some children protest strongly while others may take a day or two to realise that you are leaving them and begin to protest after several days. Children soon learn that you do return and in the mean time they are well cared for.

What to Bring

0-6 years

  • A change of clothing that is weather appropriate (younger children- especially those toilet training- will need extra changes)
  • A hat – a full brimmed wide hat.
  • A security item for rest time.
  • Sheet Sets.

Birthdays

Your child’s birthday is a special event in his/her life. To celebrate your child’s birthday, you are welcome to bring jelly (due to food allergies). Please check with your child’s teacher prior to birthday, in case of other children having special dietary requirements.

Clothing

Parents are advised to send their children to the Service in comfortable, inexpensive clothing. The children need to be able to move around during their play period and should be unimpaired by clothing. While paints, etc will come out in the wash, accidents do happen so it is best to send the children along in their “less than good clothes”. Young children enjoy and need “messy” play with paint, clay, sand, water and mud.

The Service will only have a limited supply of spare clothing. Please supply at least one change of clothing and underclothing in case of accidents.

Please mark your child’s clothing and replace name tags if they fade in the wash. Ensure clothing is weather appropriate.

Please ensure that toddlers have about three complete changes of clothing and plenty of training pants.

Clothing safety

Please do not dress your child in clothing with cords e.g. shorts, hats etc. As these have the potential to become caught on equipment and may cause serious harm to your child.

Belongings

Please ensure all belongings are clearly labelled such as dummies, clothes etc. Lost property will be displayed for parent collection in your child’s room. Parent co-operation in labelling assists the Service in keeping your child’s belongings together.

The Service discourages toys from home and we will not hold any responsibility for any personal belongings. Please be reassured security items are acceptable and news items to be placed in ‘News Box’.

Possessions

A soft toy or security item are acceptable for rest time. It is appreciated if personal possessions are not brought to the Service e.g. guns, toys etc. Any possessions brought must come entirely at the parent’s own risk with regards to breakage or loss.

Lockers

Each child is allocated a locker. Please place bags etc in your child’s locker. If your child attends less then five days per week, they will share their locker with another child.

Guidance and Discipline

Educators follow a Behaviour Guidance Management Policy which extends across the whole Service giving consistency of expectation in all rooms. This policy allows children to develop self-discipline, a respect for others and for property and respect for self.

The policy aims are:-

  • To give all children the opportunity to expand their experiences of life in a productive, safe environment that allows individuals the right to safety, tolerance, self-expression, cultural identity, dignity and the worth of the individual, along with honesty in dealing with peers and caregivers.
  • To be taught to respect the rights and needs of others by foreseeing the outcome of their behaviour and the consequences of their behaviour.
  • To encourage the individual social development of each child.

If you require further information on this policy please ask Educators and refer to the policy book.