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Discussion in 'Early Years' started by alle13, Apr 20, 2011.
Also howdo you approach parents to ask them about a home visit?
We do home visits, and they're usually quite useful.
As a parent, (my children attended the setting that I work for) I was initially sceptical and felt that it was, potentially, intrusive. However, in practice it was very helpful : the children were more relaxed on their 'own turf' and the staff were able to get a better insight into their language development and interests than if they had been shy and clinging to me.
I normally position it to parents by saying 'We normally ask parents if we may come to visit you at home, so that we can have a confidential chat without too many interruptions - would that be OK with you?' I also stress to parents that they are welcome to come into the nursery as well, so that the child gets to see where he / she will be coming. The only occasions on which we've ever had anyone decline the offer of a home visit has been when a family is in the process of moving house, and it's chaotic at home.
We always take the registration forms out with us and complete them there and then. We get a much better return of forms by doing it this way than by sending them out. One of the forms we complete is a child profile, to get an idea of whether the child is toilet trained, has any issues with food, how they respond when upset, etc. Often, by completing it alongside the parent, we find that they open up more and reveal more useful information.
Would you be willing to share your 'child profile', maybe in Resources or give us a quick overview of that areas you ask about. I've been keeping a list of ideas for things I wish I knew, in retrospect but would lkike to feel that I get it right this year (this is my first year in Nursery). THanks.
We have trialled home visits for the past year for new nursery children and found it really helpful, especially for those parents new to our setting. In our offer letter for the place we add on a bit about we would like to come and do a home visit to get to know the children in their own environment and so that the parents can ask any questions or share concerns that are personal to them. We ask them for times and days that would be best for them. We haven't had anyone refuse a visit. It also gives you something to talk to the child about when they come to the setting for a visit, e.g one little girl who was a bit nervous i asked about her pet snake and how it was.
Of course i think the parents think we are coming to check them out but we only stay about 15 minutes and while we are there we fill in the school forms with them but we don't do any check lists (maybe something to consider though). We go in pairs aswell and try and fit in visits in our lunch times or PPA.
Give it a go as a trial and see how it works out . Good luck
I agree with Alex1604 about the benefits of Home Visits. The visits are for the children rather than for the school. Seeing the key worker in their own home seems to help the children get to know the adults in a relaxed one to one situation, and they feel much more at ease with them than they would by just meeting them in the school situation. As well as giving the adults something to talk to the children about from their home life when they first start, I often find the chidren themselves will refer back to the Home Visit, so I really think the Visits are worth doing to help them feel a bit more secure and settle in better in the early days. Our current procedure now only allows Visits to children of families new to the school, so it unfortunately it's not very fair.
We always offer our parents a home visit. These last about 20 minutes and are as informal as we can make them. One adult focuses on the chiild and, if they are comfortable, shares a picture booklet with them about the Nursery and or plays with whatever toys the child brings forward. The second member of staff chats to the parents/carers, offers some basic information and completes a general getting to know you sheet. We also take a photograph of child and parent to put onto a name card to help the child settle in Nursery by having a photo of mom and/or dad, nan, baby etc. on view. A few weeks into term we ask the parents for feedback on the usefulness of these visits and have found that they are extremely positive. They value the opportunity for themselves and child to meet us and have a couple of familiar faces as soon as they come into Nursery. Also the chance to ask any questions that may have been worrying them. When a child has something to tell us about events at home we are able to visualise the setting, people and pets etc. Also to talk together about the time we came to visit.