Settling your child with us

When you have decided you would like your child to attend Mulberry Bush Montessori, we want your child to know that this is a place for them and so the focus is on them. When you arrive the emphasis will be on greeting your child first and then welcoming you.

We want to ensure that your child settles with us at Mulberry Bush Montessori and that your child gets the most out of their time with us by engaging with us, the materials, their peer group and other children.

To ensure this happens we need your help to establish what we call the ‘triangle of trust’ between your child, you as parents and us as the adult carers.

Dropping off Your Child

Please repeat the following sentences positively in sequence to your child in advance of them coming to Mulberry Bush:

  1. “When you go to Mulberry Bush we will go through the glass door.
  2. You will hang your coat up on your peg”
  3. “We will go to the (appropriate) Room”
  4. “Mummy will then say goodbye”
  5. “Mummy will collect you after lunch/ afternoon snack” (as appropriate).

In doing this your child is familiar with the language you use and the language we use.

When your child comes to Mulberry Bush you will do the above routine in practice. You have told your child these things and we have told them these things will happen and they do!

This allows your child to trust that what both you and us tell them is true. This enables your child to separate more easily over a gradual process and be less anxious about you leaving them, to be free to enjoy what Mulberry bush has to offer them.

We suggest that you continue to do this with your child for a minimum of four weeks until your child separates easily from you when you drop him/her off. We also strongly suggest that during the settling in period, the routine of who will be dropping off and collecting remains consistent until your child is settled. Changes to routine in the initial settling in period can be disrupting and affect how easily a child settles in to Mulberry Bush.

Collecting Your Child

When you come to collect your child it is important that you speak with your child about their time with us at Mulberry Bush, once again to support the triangle of trust between you and ourselves and show to your child that you support their time spent at Mulberry Bush positively.

The most common mistake is to ask a child “What did you do today?” In our experience a child is likely to say nothing in response or even say “nothing” after being asked this. Young children are not yet able to report back what they did and why they did it; that they cleaned their table to encourage independence and respect for their environment, or that they poured their own juice to help their hand eye co-ordination, or that they worked with the tweezers and tongs to help with their pincer grip which helps with pencil control and so on.

We ask parents to do and repeat the following as often as they wish;

  1.  Please feel free to look at the planning sheets that staff prepare and are displayed in the room and ask staff what activities the children have taken part in.
  2. If another person is collecting your child, please make sure that your child knows who is coming. (Don’t forget to tell us too).
  3. Remember to talk in the past tense and be positive about what your child did during their time with us. (for example, “You had a great time with Nancy baking the bread”.)
  4. Then say to your child ” When you go to Mulberry Bush the next time you will have a good time baking……etc)

Blips & Glitches

Sometime children can be very settled with us here and then things happen in their life that can cause them to feel unsettled again because change is part of life. Going on holiday can sometimes mean that children when they start back with us again, are unsettled and find separation from parents difficult again.

We know that children will manifest their anxiety here with us, even though the issue is not with Mulberry Bush, but is in their confidence to separate again from parents.

In instances like these, in the best interests of your child, we suggest that we start right back at the beginning again with the sentences;

We know that by asking this of you we are ensuring the best start at Mulberry Bush and ensures that not only is your child happy with us, but that you and we are too because your child is settled!

We are always here to chat to, to help you if you are finding separation or settling in challenging at any time during the time your child is with us!