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Should my child go to day nursery?

Many parents send their child to day nursery because both parents work or need a break to do household chores and shopping. Day nurseries can be an invaluable resource and shouldn’t be viewed as simply a childcare arrangement.

Day nursery

Day nurseries can provide children with many skills and abilities which will be beneficial when they go on to school and can improve their social skills. Even stay-at-home mums, who feel they can look after their children full time, without the help of childcare, should consider sending their child to a day nursery for even just a morning or afternoon a week as the benefits can be huge. To help make your mind up, here are three reasons why nurseries can have a positive impact on young children.

Improves your child’s social skills

By going to day nursery from an early age, children learn to interact and socialise with other children, forming relationships and making friends before they have even reached school age. Studies have shown that children who attend day care once or twice a week have better social skills than those who are at home with their mother, and in the future, they can deal with situations involving large numbers of children better than those who don’t attend day care. It also helps your child become sensitive to individuals around them and teaches them that their actions can affect others.

Improves their skills

Day nurseries normally have a structured learning timetable in the form of many age-appropriate, fun activities. They employ only qualified and experienced staff who can set activities tailored specifically to your child’s age group for optimal learning. Children who attend day nursery also have the benefit of The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). The EYFS is a framework introduced by the government and implemented in day nurseries in order to ensure each child meets certain standards in their learning and development. This framework has been backed and funded by the government because research has shown that a child’s earliest years are very important to their later development. Children will partake in many different activites, from drawing to painting to sticking to reading and listening, and all of these improve their core skill sets and set them up for school.

Prepares them for school

Day nursery is fantastic preparation for school as children who start school straight from a home environment can get a bit of a shock. Like school, nurseries have set timetables, rules that need to be followed, other children who need to be considered and specific dropping-off and pick-up times. This can ease you and your child into a routine so that when school comes around your child is used to the main elements of a school day. They need to attend a day nursery for only a few hours a week to receive the benefits, and you get a few hours a week to relax, run errands or catch up with friends. If you work, tell your employer you plan to send your child to nursery as some will subsidise nursery fees, as will the government on a means-tested system. It is always worth checking as there may be help available.

More on day nurseries

How to choose childcare
10 Tips for choosing childcare
Common fears about day care

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