40 Years of Busy Bees

Five Ways to Prepare Your Child for Starting Nursery

Starting nursery can seem overwhelming, so we’ve outlined five of the best ways of preparing for nursery for you and your child.

Published: 25/01/2023

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One second, you’re cradling your newborn  baby, breathing in that new baby smell (how is it so good?), and the next, you’re preparing for nursery.

You may have rolled your eyes at other parents cooing “they grow up so fast” but now your little one’s first day of nursery is fast approaching, you understand completely. 

Here at Busy Bees, we have been settling children into nursery for more than 40 years, so we know a thing or two about ensuring they get the best start in life.

We understand the process can seem overwhelming, so we’ve outlined five of the best ways of preparing for nursery, for both you and your child. 

Preparing for Nursery

Starting nursery is a big step for someone so little – so, before their first day of nursery, put a few of our tips into practice to ensure a smooth and seamless transition into their exciting nursery adventure. 

Three pre-school age children playing with educational toys in a nursery setting

1. Get Social!

Socialising is something some children find easier than others. Some may not have been around more than siblings, or friends’ children before starting nursery. 

Introducing your child to larger groups of children in safe spaces such as play parks helps to introduce and encourage the idea of sharing and taking turns. 

By boosting their social confidence and getting them used to playing with other children, their first day of nursery is likely to be much less daunting. It’s important to remember that even if your little one is reluctant to play together with other children immediately, this is completely normal – but giving them the opportunity to play alongside others will be beneficial for their social skills.

A Busy Bees nursery room with a variety of different toys, activities and resources

2. Settling in Sessions

No one likes being thrown in at the deep end, so to make that first day of nursery a little less scary, most nurseries offer settling-in sessions that allow little ones to explore their new environment and become familiar with the toys, activities, and exciting new space to play. 

Settling in sessions are also a great way for parents to meet the team, to get an insight into what types of activities the children do, and what resources are available. 

By getting familiar with their surroundings in settling-in sessions, that first day won’t feel like such a big deal (for them!).

A child putting colourful bricks away into a box

3. Get Practising

Children might be expected to do things at nursery such as tidying up toys or putting on their coats, so practising things like this at home is another great way to prepare for starting nursery. 

Try practising simple tasks such as playing games that involve taking turns. This is something that they’ll definitely have to get used to once at nursery, so it’s a good idea to build the foundations of this at home.

You’ll be amazed at how quickly your child’s independence and confidence will grow once they’ve spent some time at nursery – but it doesn’t hurt to give them a little head start (plus, any help with tidying up is a bonus!).

A parent waving goodbye to a baby being looked after by a babysitter

4. Solo Time

By getting your child used to spending time away from you, even just for a couple of hours with friends, grandparents, or a babysitter, it’ll get them used to being left with other carers.

Leaving your little one for short bursts of time will not only give them the reassurance you’ll be returning, but it also gets you used to having someone else look after their needs. 

Some children find the transition to nursery a difficult one, and who can blame them? They’ve had parents solely doting on their wants and needs since day one, but as stressful as it can sometimes seem, it’s great for their independence and confidence in the long run. 

A child eating breakfast

5. Morning Routine Preparation

Make the first day of nursery as seamless as possible by practising the early morning routine. 

If you haven’t been working to the clock in the mornings before your child starts nursery, it’s a good idea to start getting into the habit of getting up and dressed by a certain time, as well as eating breakfast in time to leave. 

Keeping the morning routine calm and consistent will reduce stress and unnecessary rushing – allowing for a more positive first day of nursery.


What to Look For in a Nursery?

At Busy Bees, we have over 40 years of experience and expert knowledge, and our website is packed full of useful articles with tips and advice. 

So, whether you’re weighing up the benefits of nursery for your child, or perhaps you’re in the initial research stage of looking for and choosing nurseries ? We’re on hand to provide help and support. 

Alternatively, if you’ve found a nursery you think could be perfect, get in touch today to book a visit