It is perfectly normal to feel anxious about your child starting nursery. Some children settle very quickly whilst others need a little time to adjust to their new surroundings and routine.

If you are wondering whether sending your child to nursery is the right thing to do, it may be reassuring to know that research has shown that children who attend an early years setting such as a day nursery typically achieve better results at secondary school than those who don’t. They are generally more sociable and better behaved, too.

There are a few things that you can do to prepare your child for their first day at nursery:

  1. Talk about nursery positively
    Talk about nursery at home, letting your child know that they will have lots of fun and meet many new friends. There are some books that you could read with your child before they start such as My First Day at Nursery School by Becky Edwards.
  2. Dress your child comfortably
    Make dressing and undressing easy for your child, especially if they are toilet training. You also want them to be comfortable.
  3. Share information
    The more information that the staff know about your child the easier it will be for them to help settle, distract and comfort your child when they first start nursery. Make sure you share your child’s likes and dislikes with their key person.
  4. Stay calm
    You may be feeling anxious or tense on the inside but when you drop off your child try to appear as calm and relaxed as possible. Children can pick up on how you are feeling, so if you stay calm and positive, they should follow suit.
  5. Keep goodbyes brief
    Let your child know that you will be back to collect them. Give them a quick hug or kiss and hand them over to a member of staff that they met on their settling-in sessions. The briefer the goodbye the better, and don’t keep going back.
  6. Don’t be afraid to call us
    We welcome parents to call the nursery at any time to check on their child.

What to bring with you

Please ensure that all clothes are clearly named:

  • coat, hat and wellies in winter
  • sunhat in summer
  • a spare set of clothes


Please bring the following for your baby:

  • enough bottles, nappies and wipes for the time your child is attending the nursery
  • a note of your baby’s normal routine at home, e.g. when they normally sleep and when they are normally fed
  • any food that you wish them to eat other than the meals provided by the nursery