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Posted by Katie oGrady

A day in the life of a nursery nurse

After arriving at nursery at 7am one of the first things I do is set up the room with fun activities for the little ones to explore throughout the day. The children and I really love messy play – clearing the mess away at the end isn’t as much fun though.

Parents start bringing in the children from 8am and I greet each and every one of them finding out how they are, any concerns and find out if they need breakfast or not. As soon as breakfast is finished the fun really begins – playtime! Play is one of the main ways in which children learn. Providing children with a range of playthings will help them learn in a number of ways including early introductions to maths, science, English and creativity. All of the age appropriate activities we provide link to the EYFS. Our room is divided into different zones; Messy Play, Home Corner, Construction, Reading, Music and Creativity. Our free-flow policy means the children can move from one activity to another as they wish.

At around 9.30am in the morning children enjoy a snack of fresh fruit.

Twice a week we all enjoy a visit from Dinky Dancers and Tiny Mites – the children love music and dancing and the rest of the team can often be found bopping around the room to their favourite nursery rhyme too! Children in our Pre-School room also welcome visits by Challenge Sport and Education and a French teacher throughout the week.

On key days and festivals throughout the year we are visited by lots of local professionals, volunteers and groups as part of our Mini VIP initiative. Particular favourites have been fire fighters, a nurse, a vet, ZooLab, RSPB and an optician.

At the end of a busy morning we all sit down to eat lunch together at 11.30am. Children are served delicious homemade dishes including salmon and vegetable cous cous, Moroccan lamb stew, spaghetti bolognaise and chicken biryani. It’s lovely sitting down to eat with the children – another perk of the job (especially when it’s fruit crumble for dessert).

After lunch, most Pre-Toddlers have a nap which allows me to plan and catch up on any observations that I need to finish – these are really important as they are the way that we monitor the progress of each child. They also form a lovely record for parents to keep as the children move through the nursery.

It’s then time to set up the room for afternoon activities – variation is key and it keeps all the children entertained and stimulated. If the weather is dry we head out in to the garden. I like to keep all the children as active as possible and give them as much fresh air through the day as I can.

At 3:30pm we sit down for tea. This is a lighter meal than lunch but just as tasty.

The last part of the day can be a little difficult at times because the children can get tired so we make sure they have plenty of fun by singing songs and playing games – we need to try and keep them awake until their mummies and daddies come to collect them at home time.

If I am working on a late shift I get to say goodbye to all of the children in my room and hand over to the parents. Handover is a lovely experience as I get to tell parents exactly what their little ones have been up to and give out the pictures the children have created during the day.

When everyone has left we tidy the room giving everything a good clean to make sure it is ready for the next day.