Eleanor is starting nursery school tomorrow. She’s starting a couple of months earlier than Rosemary did, because the nursery school has changed the age when they start taking children (from 2 years 3 months, to 2 years). She is very excited about it and is talking about doing ‘painting and drawing and having friends’. She’s been wanting to go for a while now, as she’s heard Rosemary talk about it and, whenever we walk past (at least a couple of times a week), we say ‘That’s where you’ll be going to nursery school.’
She’ll be going for two mornings a week and, apart from tomorrow, when we will all (including Rosemary, who has an inset day) be picking her up, will be collected by my mum and taken back to her house for lunch and a nap. I’m actually feeling a bit odd about that, though. Workwise it’s the most sensible thing, as it means we can continue with working school hours and trying (!) to keep work out of the rest of the time. But I have very fond memories of collecting Rosemary from nursery school, usually at least once a week and I do feel a bit sad about missing out on that experience. We’ll see how it goes, anyway. It might turn out not to suit anyone, or to be perfect.
We’ve been kind of working on the assumption that Eleanor will jump into nursery school with as much enthusiasm as Rosemary did and no qualms. When I took Rosemary for her taster session, the staff suggested I leave her for half an hour, which I wasn’t expecting at all. Rosemary was not at all bothered, but I was rather freaked out by it. Eleanor hasn’t had a taster session. The nursery didn’t suggest it and nor did we – possibly because we’re all working on the same assumption that she’ll take to it as easily as Rosemary. I think she probably will, but it did occur to us recently that there is actually the possibility that she will totally freak out and not want to be left there.
Today, we went out and bought her a little ruck sack to take her change of clothes and nappy in – and one day her lunch. We filled in the registration form (likes prawns and playing with her sister; dislikes doing what she doesn’t want to do – yes, I know that’s not very helpful information, but hey). I have dug out some clothes for her to wear and a change of clothes and have put a wash (and dry) on because I couldn’t find a single pair of socks – lots of single socks, just no pairs, despite the fact she has two pairs of each colour sock. I have the pen ready to write her name in everything in the morning – yes, I didn’t get around to ordering the labels, let alone ironing them in. Next week, perhaps.
It’s a great nursery school, which Rosemary enjoyed a lot. They’ve made a few small changes since Rosemary was there, all of which sound quite valuable (e.g. a proper key worker system; a board showing what activities are available; proper learning journals which parents can view at any time). As we did with Rosemary, we’ll also be sending her to the local (attached to the school) playgroup, though she can’t start there until next September. As an October child, though, she’s going to be at both settings for a lot longer – she’ll be at nursery school for almost a full three years.
So I really do hope she loves it as much as Rosemary did.