As a working Mum myself I often feel a little guilty that my boys find themselves in nursery after school so that I can finish up my work for the day. Quite ridiculous many may feel as its my nursery they spend time in…..but they don’t see me while they are there, so its still time away from me.
It may even seem quite fitting that as I write this blog, for work, I do it after a day out at Legoland as they had an inset day today. The work / motherhood balance is a challenge in itself without the constant views of anyone and everyone that feels the need to chip in their opinion on working mum’s.
When I talk to friends that are working Mum’s they often mutter the famous word ‘guilt’ too. But why do working Mum’s feel so guilty? Yes they are spending time away from their little one but lets think about this logically. Are our children really suffering? Or are they actually benefitting too?
Here it is, my take on why working mum’s should never feel guilty!
- Social skills – Your child will develop great social skills when spending time with children of their own age. They will enjoy leaning through play, learn about sharing and will want to develop their skills to that of the older children they play with. It’s brilliant to see how children learn from each other.
- Messy Play – Hands up all those that think playdoh is messy?? Well if you think that’s bad try filling a tufty tray with shaving foam! Why not get all the lose mud you can find in the garden into the house and hide plastic bugs in it? Or if you are feeling very adventurous then how about getting the baked beans or custard out! How many of us shy away from these wonderful activities? Your child will learn so much about their senses through messy play and by doing so regularly at nursery you don’t get the mess! It’s a win, win.
- Preparation for school – It’s a fact that children that have had good preschooling settle much better at school. We work closely with a number of schools and they all say the same. A child that has been at a preschool not only settles quicker but already knows how to sit quietly for a story, shares well, listens well and has the confidence to form relationships with other children. Can someone remind me why we feel guilty again??
- Constant learning through play – With the best intention in the world it’s very hard to keep our children entertained all day long without wanting to pull ones hair out! But you will find, certainly at Apple Trees, that the staff are handpicked as they LOVE children and want nothing more than to be with them all day, playing and carrying out activities to help them learn and develop. The activities they think of are in themselves quite amazing. Some of the things our staff come up with are just brilliant and I wish I had done such things as a child. From the minute your child arrives until the minute they go home they are kept interested and inspired, they are encouraged to let their imagination run wild, they are entertained, they are taught, they are loved and they are cared for.
- They actually quite like it – Now, there is no child in the world that will willingly choose something over their Mummy…….however they can also very much like other things…….and guess what?? They LOVE nursery. They may play up to your emotions and make you feel incredibly guilty by crying as you leave, but believe me, within 30 seconds of you leaving there is not a tear in sight and its play time. The favourite toys are out or it’s a beeline for the painting table. Perhaps the water tray is calling or is it cutting and sticking that is top of the list. A quick catch up with their bestie over a bottle of Aptimil or a chit chat at the car garage. Whatever it is they are smiling…..lots. They are having fun. They are learning. They are thriving.
- You deserve your time too – While we acknowledge that there are many Mum’s that may not choose to return to work, but do it as a necessity, there are many…..and I am one of them……that enjoy working. I can never imagine just existing as a Mummy. I LOVE my children and I adore being a Mummy but I also need to have my own things too. I love to work and the fact I do makes me a happier Mummy. What child wants a miserable Mummy?
- It’s a long term health boost – Believe is or not, although your child has probably picked up every ailment going since starting nursery, this is great for their immune system. A study by JAMA Pediatrics found that children that had spent time in nursery before the age of 2 had stronger immune systems and caught much less illness during their school years. So we are even helping their health!
- Its great for routines – Most nurseries will follow a routine and will work with you to incorporate parts of your routine. But a nursery will not deviate from sleep time or meal time. Plus when your child sees all the other children doing it they will want to follow suit. If you ever visit a nursery during sleep time you will marvel at how they have managed to get 12 children to sleep at the same time when we can’t even manage one! But they can and its all down to routine. Plus the extra skills they will pick up. Like sitting at a table and using their cutlery way before a child that does not attend nursery. The list goes on.
So next time that ‘g’ word spings to mind, stop, think and remember why its actually good that we are putting our children in nursery. For above are just some of the reasons why working mum’s should never feel guilty!
Until next time,