Our nursery search started with visits to local nurseries in Hove, close to where we lived. My husband and I both work and we needed 4 full days a week for our toddler Zack.
I was quite clear that I needed to find a nursery that would work hand in hand with us, respecting our choices and supporting the routines that we had worked hard to establish at home. Frankly I was a bit daunted by the idea of settling my son into nursery! Safety was also top of my list and I wanted to be absolutely sure my child would be amazingly well cared for by engaged and committed staff. Children can be strongly influenced by their environment and by the adults within it so I wanted to know that the adults caring for him would help him develop a clear sense of right and wrong and act as positive role models for him.
When I visited Home from Home I found what I was looking for. Firstly there was a lovely warm, friendly feeling about the place. The manager Emma showed me around. She was genuinely interested in us as a family and listened to our needs. It was immediately clear to me that she was very on the ball and my concerns about safety were allayed. The nursery environment was bright and interesting and I noticed how happy and engaged the children were. The owner Nicola made a point of finding out all about us which immediately made us feel part of the Home from Home family. The calibre of staff was evident from the way they communicated with the children and involved themselves in their play. They seem to have a genuine passion for being with children. I also liked the activities available and thought the big garden was thoughtfully and creatively designed. It was clear that Home from Home offered what I was looking for.
Nearly two years on we know we made the right choice. We now have two boys at the nursery and they both absolutely love it. From Toddler Unit to Pre-School the boys’ social development, learning and progress has been carefully shared with me through daily conversations. We can also see evidence of group time activities in the nursery and the topics the children follow are relevant and meaningful. As a result we, as parents, have been able to build on their learning at home. The nursery is also very open to suggestions and feedback and actively seeks the input of parents. It also encourages children to bring in photos, books and other objects that are special to them. Learning feels personalised to the individual needs of my boys and I know absolutely that for the staff it’s not just a job. My boys have adored their key workers.
Recently we moved House. Home from Home is no longer close to us but we wouldn’t dream of moving the boys because the nursery is such a huge part of our lives. My boys have grown so much in confidence and independence and have developed a sense of others that can only be learned from high quality group care. Recently my older son solemnly told me, “Mummy don’t you know sharing is caring?” He learned this at Home from Home.