Preparing for the transition to nursery
Nursery is an exciting time for children. Their learning takes off, they meet new friends and start doing things for themselves like hanging coats up, or taking shoes off. Small achievements are very meaningful at this age.
Enquire are the Scottish advice service for impartial information on additional support for learning. They offer a downloadable factsheet outlining the services, help and support you can expect to receive.
What can be achieved?
- Equipment: Your physiotherapist and occupational therapist can visit the early years setting and see what strategies and support your child will need.
- Mobility: Therapists can look at where a child is struggling and help them move to the end of the activity by breaking it down into steps. For example: Learning to put on their shoes.
- Balance: Another goal might be standing long enough to take trousers up and down when going to the toilet.
- Fine motor skills. Or learning to use a pair of scissors or hold a pen comfortably.
- Communication: Your child needs to be understood if they are to be a successful learner. Focused therapy can help familiarise your child with new methods of communication for example, Macaton, Signalong, an ipad or eye gaze technology.
Cooper was born with Hydrocephalus and Quadroplegic Cerebral Palsy. He and his twin brother Lewis are preparing to start nursery later in the year.
“Cooper loves having a carry-on and being funny. He loves being with other kids. He can’t sit unaided yet, but he’s only just three and manages to get around. When he’s lying on his tummy his right hand is always tucked under his belly. We’re trying to build up strength in this arm because his legs are ready to go.
He attends a family centre and receives an hour of physio every week, but I felt I wanted more for Cooper. He’s just finished the Right Start programme. The therapists did things I hadn’t even thought about like how Cooper is going to get ready for his nursery session. Using little physio benches they’d sit behind him and help him take his shoes off, holding his leg up and reaching over to take the Velcro off his shoes, and then help him take his splints off and get onto his knees and onto the floor so he’s ready to play. It was great to get that focused time, it’s improved his confidence. They also let him choose his activities using a board, we hadn’t done that much and now we do it at home. Asking Cooper what he wants to do gives him a bit more independence.” Kerrie, Cooper’s Mum