Settling In

We want your child to feel happy and safe with us. To make sure that this is the case, the staff will work with you to decide on how to help your child to settle into the setting. Listed below are methods we use to make a child’s start at pre-school a good experience.

  • Before a child starts to attend the setting, we use a variety of ways to provide his/her parents with information. These include written information (including our prospectus and policies), displays about activities available the setting, and individual meetings with parents
  • During the half-term before a child is enrolled, we provide opportunities for the child and his/her parents to visit the setting. Firstly a welcome
    afternoon and then visits on the day that the child would be coming on so as to meet staff and children, should they wish
  • We allocate a key person to each child and his/her family before she/he starts to attend; the key person welcomes and looks after the child and his/her parents at the child’s first session and during the settling-in process.
  • We use the welcome afternoon and the first session at which a child attends to explain and complete with his/her parents the child’s registration records.
  • When a child starts to attend, we explain the process of settling-in with his/her parents and jointly decide on the best way to help the child to settle into the setting.
  • We have an expectation that the parent, carer or close relative, may stay for most of the session during the first week, gradually taking time away from their child, increasing this as and when the child is able to cope.
  • Younger children will take longer to settle in, as will children who have not previously spent time away from home. Children who have had a period of absence may also need their parent to be on hand to re-settle them.
  • We judge a child to be settled when they have formed a relationship with an adult; for example the child looks for a familiar adult when he/she arrives, goes to them for comfort, and seems pleased to be with them. Also when the child is familiar with where things are and is pleased to see other children and participate in activities.
  • When parents leave, we ask them to say goodbye to their child and explain that they will be coming back, and when.
  • We do not believe that leaving a child to cry will help them to settle any quicker. We believe that a child’s distress will prevent them from learning and gaining the best from the setting.
  • We reserve the right not to accept a child into the setting without a parent or carer if the child finds it distressing to be left. This is especially the case with very young children.
  • Within the first four to six weeks of starting we discuss and work with the child’s parents to create their child’s Learning and Development Journey.