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Old 01-31-2017, 08:52 AM
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Default I Don't Know Where To Start....Day Care Woes

Hi Everyone,

This is my first post. Our 2 yr old son started day care at 10 months old. Lately, our issues have hit it's peak of frustration with us. Should we take him out of this day care or are we being overly sensitive? Here's my husband letter to our provider for insight into one of many situations we're dealing with:

This evening my wife and I spoke about J's progress at daycare, and the feedback I received this morning regarding his perceived inability to associate and play well with the other children. I have to be honest, it stuck with me all day at work and has us both very concerned. I'm concerned because a few weeks ago when I first brought up the idea of having J switched to a 3-day schedule, I specifically asked how he was getting along and associating with the other children. I was told he was getting along just fine with everyone, and that his only real issue is at nap time, which we were already aware of.

To replay what happened earlier, when I came in this morning, M looked scornfully at J and told me to keep him away because he "Always thinks things are his" as G hurriedly took the toy from J reach. This is something that I have repeatedly witnessed when we arrive in the morning. That is, the older kids hiding the toys because "Uh oh, J is here!" and not just when something special is brought from home.

J then quietly trotted over to the little kitchen and began playing by himself, while you walked around, looked him over and asked "Does he always play like that?" After witnessing what had just happened with the older children shooing him away, this question confused me. You elaborated that he just doesn't really play with the other kids and kind of "wanders around" by himself all day, only occasionally playing with S or R. This took me off guard, and all I could really say is that "Well, he's been here almost a year now, are you encouraging others to play with him?" To which you replied "No, because he has to make that choice himself." Not sure what else to say in the moment, I left for work, hoping that J was okay.

It seems that, in addition to his existing nap time issues which result in subsequent crankiness, this has begun to visibly stress you out as I've noticed multiple times over the last couple months you looking angrily over at J when I pick him up. It's difficult for a parent to see their little child after work, and think that he has angered his care provider to the point where frustrated looks are given to a two year old upon pickup. It makes us both question whether perhaps this is becoming more trouble than it's worth for everyone.

To sum this email up, at this point J seems relatively unaware of the problems he seemingly causes at daycare. However, as months go by and he gets older, I would absolutely hate for him to feel in any way "othered" or feel that he is some kind of a problem child. At this tender time, we cannot risk our son feeling inferior to other children.

We appreciate everything you do for J, and understand the challenges and stress that come along with it. However, we're concerned that, after nearly a year, he simply is not fitting in with the program. We would appreciate any feedback you can offer. We, of course, really love you and E and would love for this to work out, but must put J's needs first. We both hope we can work together to make LTLL a place where J can truly belong.

Last edited by Blackcat31; 01-31-2017 at 09:04 AM.
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Old 01-31-2017, 09:09 AM
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First off, 2 year olds developmentally do not have the skills to play WITH others. They are egocentric and often times play alone or along side others but don't actually engage in a back and forth dialog of play. Most simply do not possess the skills or cognitive ability.

It has nothing to do with chosen behaviors but more to do ability. Just as he does not understand algebra right now he does not understand playing WITH others.

Here is an excellent article that explains the stages of play a child will go through in his/her early years. Knowing and understanding this information is vital for caregivers so that the expectations for each child is developmentally appropriate and that lack of skill is never equated with discipline.

http://gemschicagoearlyyears.com/six...social-skills/

I do think it may be time to move on and find alternate care. It doesn't really sound like the teachers or staff truly understand developmentally appropriate practices and when that happens the results often times effect the child negatively and anxiety and stress is one of the most common reactions for them.

Last edited by Blackcat31; 01-31-2017 at 09:24 AM.
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Old 01-31-2017, 09:17 AM
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I would say you handled it very graciously and understanding. As a provider for 13 years it is true some children don't fit the program or in this case the program doesn't fit the child. It might be more appropriate and in the best interest of your child to find another setting for your child.
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Old 01-31-2017, 10:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackcat31 View Post
First off, 2 year olds developmentally do not have the skills to play WITH others. They are egocentric and often times play alone or along side others but don't actually engage in a back and forth dialog of play. Most simply do not possess the skills or cognitive ability.

It has nothing to do with chosen behaviors but more to do ability. Just as he does not understand algebra right now he does not understand playing WITH others.

Here is an excellent article that explains the stages of play a child will go through in his/her early years. Knowing and understanding this information is vital for caregivers so that the expectations for each child is developmentally appropriate and that lack of skill is never equated with discipline.

http://gemschicagoearlyyears.com/six...social-skills/

I do think it may be time to move on and find alternate care. It doesn't really sound like the teachers or staff truly understand developmentally appropriate practices and when that happens the results often times effect the child negatively and anxiety and stress is one of the most common reactions for them.
I was just going to say this, although not quite so eloquently. At this age, I would expect parallel play, but mostly solo play. Interaction? Sure.

I would be very concerned about the children's reaction to this child. Do they think your son will take toys from them? Their words often mirror the provider. Eg. My children in care will say "He is little and learning. Please don't take my toys, J. You can have a turn when I am done." When children act this defensive towards a child, I would also be concerned about the behaviors the child has. They wouldn't be making it up, kwim?

What are the ages of the other children in care? What is the providers experience? Education? How verbal is your child? How does he interact with peers when not in child care?
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