Last month, we had Mushroom’s second ever parent’s evening at nursery.

Have you ever been to a pre-school parent’s evening? Even I found it overwhelming so can only imagine what it’s like for the toddlers. It was manic. The sessions are in ten minute slots from when the nursery closes so everyone turns up at six and waits their turn. This means that there was at least one parent for every child, along with older siblings in some cases, most of whom were waiting in the corridor, supposedly reading their child’s journey book before talking to their keyworker. Ha! I did not see one parent reading the journey book before going in. We were all much too busy trying to keep the kids under control. It was complete chaos.

When we finally got in to see Mushroom’s keyworker (let’s call her S), Mushroom had already had enough. He ran away several times, climbed on the furniture, shouted ‘No!’ and threw some toys around. In between trying to keep half an eye on him, S talked to Mr B and I about Mushroom’s development.

S said: Mushroom doesn’t reach out to his practitioners to ask for help and support. He will only seek help if he really needs it.

My response: We’ll encourage him to speak to you if he really needs help rather than trying to do everything for himself.

My thoughts: I admire his independence.

S said: Mushroom communicates more with the other children in the room than with adults.

My response: Is he still not engaging with the adults? (When he first moved up to the toddler room he wouldn’t speak to any of the adults. At all. Made potty training challenging!).

My thoughts: It turns out he has an attachment to a previous keyworker, the only man at his nursery. I don’t think that’s a coincidence. In fact, I have noticed that a lot of the women use motherese with the children (not just the babies) which I’m not keen on now that he’s older… Anyway, perhaps that’s one for another blog posts! It seems Mushroom’s just being picky about which adults he’ll speak to.

S said: Mushroom appears very interested in books, rhymes and stories and will happily look at books alone or in a small group where he can discuss what he sees. He handles books with care and knows that text is read from left to right.

My response: *smiles*

My thoughts: That’s my boy!

S says: Mushroom can count reliably from one to ten and will do this throughout play with hs peers.

My response: What?? I mean, yes we’ve been counting at home a lot.. To ten reliably, really…?

My thoughts: He’ll give it a good go but it’s more like, ‘one, two, three, three, seven, eight, ten!’ I wonder whether he’s taking the piss at home or they have him confused with another child.

I won’t bore you with the whole report (yes, we got a report to take home! It all felt scarily like preparation for school. Which I suppose it is) but needless to say he is doing well in all areas and I am very proud of him, although I do wonder whether he saves up all his emotion/frustrations until he gets home when he unleashes it all on me and Mr B. Even S commented while we were there that ‘he’s never usually like this… I can’t believe he’s the same child!’ while he ran off for the 100th time shouting ‘No!’ as he was chased across the room by the poor girl who was supposed to be observing the exchange as part of her training.

What are/were your child’s pre-school parent’s evenings like? Are they chaos too, or are they slightly more sedate affairs? And have you ever been surprised at how differently your child behaves at nursery compared to at home? Do comment below and share your own experiences!