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The adaptation of children when entering nursery


Separation Anxiety and the adaptation of children when entering nursery in Barcelona


The period of adaptation when entering a nursery can be a stressful time for parents as well as for the child.

Separation anxiety in children begins around 8 months, so sometimes little babies have less difficulty and adapt more quickly to nursery or to a nanny.

What is separation anxiety?

By the age of 8 months, your child may have a harder time being separated from you, because from this age the child realizes that they and their parents are separate people. They are a full person and not an extension of their parents.

The child is also making more and more of a differentiation between those around him (parents, siblings, grandparents) and those they do not know.

This is a normal stage of your child's development. He/she is afraid of strangers and afraid of being abandoned. When they do not see you, they think that you are gone forever,

Not all children go through this or manifest feelings in the same way. It depends on the personality of each.



What to do as a parent?

It is sometimes difficult for the parent to know how to react when their child is crying as they leave. It will take more or less time, but your child will get used to it and understand that you will be back soon. This will also be part of the weekly routine so try as much as possible to leave them on the same days and at the same times each week.

Here are some tips that help your child to adapt.

  • Visit the nursery with him before the start of the school year to get acquainted with the space.
  • Do not leave without saying goodbye or seeing them leave. It is difficult but necessary for them not to be taken by surprise or to feel abandoned.
  • Introduce the person who will take care of the child. Explain that they will take care of them and do it with confidence because otherwise the child will feel your anxiety.
  • After some time spent together, know to leave and trust the team, so that the child has the opportunity to adapt.



How is the adaptation at Peek A Boo?

At Peek A Boo we want to promote the well-being of the child and family during this crucial moment. It is sometimes the first time that the child has been separated from their family.

We are therefore very flexible and open to all the needs of the child and his or her parents.
In general, after the first week, children are comfortable enough to stay from the morning through to the afternoon, but this can be more difficult for some children than for others, and of course we adapt to their needs.

On the first day, the parent can stay with the child for one hour if necessary and then leave for 30 minutes and return. This allows us to evaluate the child's reaction. Did he cry a lot, did he calm down quickly, did he play. From there we can decide what to do for the second day, and so on.
Some children still cry for several days. It is important to follow their emotions and adapt to them. In this case we will only extend the separation time, 1 hour, then 2 hours, etc., until the child is comfortable.

The period of adaptation and acceptance of separation in children can last up to 3 weeks.


Finally, because your child has become used to the environment this does not mean that the period of separation anxiety is over. They just managed to adapt and appreciate this new space and these new people who take care of them.
The anguish of separation can continue until 18 months, and usually leaves room for the period of acquisition of the "no". All of the fundamental steps in their maturation process.