Friday, 1 July 2016

Making separation easier.

The big green chair all ready for a child to climb up to reach the biggest hole.
I am all for making the parting between a child and a parent as easy as possible and not a fan of taking children crying from their parents or parents sneaking off without saying they are leaving. Having said that, if after a few weeks, if we know a child is settled and just prolonging the parting, we may well encourage a parent to leave, knowing their upset child will settle within 2 minutes. I have done a few posts on how we settle children into our nursery class & have to admit, it really does work best if parents are relaxed about the whole process. 
A few years ago, Juliet from Creative Star Learning Company did a lovely post about the different entrances she had noticed at the incredible Highway Farm Activity Centre & I was inspired by their little circular holes in the fences to give little glimpses of what lay beyond. I persuaded our caretaker to cut some into our gate & fence, thinking that this would allow the nursery children to 'spy' out into the main school or others to peek into the nursery playground. I never foresaw how important these little holes would become for many children each morning as they said good bye to their parents. 

Two years on, these holes have become part of the morning ritual and I would recommend them to any setting. The children generally get one of the big chairs & climb up to kiss their parents goodbye through the largest of the holes, some like to watch the car drive off before jumping down to start playing with their friends. 
This year some of the children discovered that there were lots of these holes in the gate & dotted along the fence & it was a truly gorgeous moment to watch 2 parents in particular taking the time to kiss their children through each of these holes - this often involved a 6 foot daddy down on his knees on the pavement on the other side of the fence to ensure he could reach the lowest holes!

I hope that this little touch helped some children to make that parting easier & let them feel they were in control of the separation.
As one little girl commented after her visit to Primary 1 "There are no holes in the fence or door in P.1" so maybe I can persuade the caretaker to get his drill out again!!

You can read more about our settling in 'policy' here:
A link to Creative Star's Highway Farm post: