Post # 1
In a month and a half, my daughter will turn 1, at which point she will be moved from the baby room at daycare to the toddler room. She has been in the baby room every single day since she was 3 months old.
I am kind of panicking a little bit over this. I need some calming words and stories to help me chill out about it.
The toddler room is a completely different environment than the baby room. In the toddy room, all the kids are bigger and older. They all walk, run, probably throw stuff from time to time; they throw temper tantrums and steal toys from each other, because that’s just what toddlers do. Naps are once a day, all at the same time. (naps in the baby room are “whenever the baby gets tired”). Feeding is scheduled, and I can’t just send in pouches of puree anymore, as there are rules about what the kids eat.
Even though I know everything will turn out fine eventually, I’m just scared for her to make this transition. It’s going to be a HUGE change from what she’s used to. I don’t even know what I should be doing to prepare! She still takes two naps a day and I can’t imagine cutting her down to one just yet. She still eats purees, not much table food. I don’t really know how to transition her to table food, either, since she can’t eat 90% of what DH and I eat (too spicy or too salty for a baby). I think it will be several months before she starts to walk, given the rate that she’s been achieving her milestones up til now.
The whole thing is just very overwhelming. Anyone with kids in daycare who have been through this before? Wise words to remind me that this is all going to be okay?
Post # 2
I think you have to look at it as an adventure for her. She is going to be experiencing so many new things, which is amazing and wonderful for babies and small children (and not uncommon, because every time you go to a new store or whatever with her, she is experiencing something new! you just don’t think about it that way.) Her whole life will be built upon new experiences. This is not the first and it won’t be the last. Deep breaths. Are you friendly with any of the moms of somewhat older babies who are already in the toddler room? Maybe you could ask one of them to describe what the transition was like for her child…
Post # 3
Hmm.. this is tough.
My DD didn’t start daycare until just before her first birthday. She goes to a small, in-home facility that has no more than 6 kids at a time. When DD started though, she was the youngest, with most of the kids being at least a year older than her.
It was nerve wracking to think about, but honestly, she did SO well (and my DD is a tiny, petite little thing).I was a wreck. I was sure the other kids would be too rough, or that she’d feel left out because she was smaller and younger…but there wasn’t a single day that she didn’t want to be there…and she learned to play with the older kids!
She very quickly learned to walk and talk very well after starting daycare with the older kids. She has benefitted SO greatly by being around older kids. She will be 3 in October, and for at least the past 6 months she’s been saying her ABC’s, counting to 14, talking in full, clear sentences, and just being a smarty pants overall! We also recently potty trained, because a couple of the other older kids were, and she just wanted to follow suit… I was ok with that!
Now, the downfalls I have seen is that she does sometimes pick up behaviours that aren’t too cool, but such is life.
The food and napping part is tough. I had more freedom in that regard because DD goes to such a small facility. The operator is much more flexible. I can’t see how the daycare can demand that she only eats certain food at one year old. Many kids don’t even start eating purees until 8-10 months… and I know my DD didn’t really eat a lot of solid food until she was closer to 14-18 months or so.
Post # 4
iarebridezilla: All of us transitioned from babies to toddlers and survived. You have a time frame for this happening, maybe it’s time to help her by changing things at home.
Wait until after you remove her portion of food before you add salt and spices. You and DH could manage to eat less spicy and salty food while she transitions. Start shifting her from purees to finger foods.
Nap time can be difficult, as not all babies can shift to one nap at any one time. Despite the scheduled nap time, I’m sure there are babies who simply curl up and nap at unscheduled times.
As the pp said, instead of looking at this with dread, you can help her adapt by looking at this as a positive thing.
Post # 5
iarebridezilla: hey momma. i am not a mom (well, not to a human baby; i have a four-legged furry child who i love very much…), but i worked at a daycare for quite a while, so i can give you some perspective from the dark side. 🙂
start going from 2 naps a day to one nap and a shorter one, and then gradually move from one and half to just the one. she’ll get it.
what are the rules for the toddlers’ food?
she might not be walking for a few months, but chances are there are some others in there who aren’t walking yet either. if you’re confident in the daycare she attends, trust the teacher. she will know that your DD might need a little help adjusting. when i worked the toddler room, i had majority 2-3 year olds, and i had one 1 year old. the 1 year old’s mom had the same concerns. we made sure to have the 1 year old play with some of the quieter/calmer 2 year olds at first. we only did 1 nap for the toddler room too; most days, the 1 year old was totally fine. she learned the new habit/schedule just like she had in the baby room. my 1 year old had days at the start of her time in my class that she just wasn’t feelin’ the schedule. i’m sure her 1 year old mind was like, “fuck this dudes i’ve been sleeping when i want and eating what mom gives me and now i gotta deal with this shit?” but she eventually got used to it.
it’s going to be fine! 🙂 she’s not going to be harmed by this, and i promise in 6 or 7 months when you go to pick her up and see her playing with the other kids and being totally cool with 1 nap, you’ll be so proud of her for learning to adjust to this new big thing! 🙂
Post # 6
iarebridezilla: Does your center not have an older and younger toddler room? I worked at daycare and we had a “waddler” (12-17 month) and “toddler” (18-24 month) room. The difference between a 12 month old and a 23 month old IS quite drastic, imo. During drop off time the waddlers and toddlers were combined and the toddlers are like mini people while the waddlers were more like roly polys. They would kind of get trampled by the bigger kids if we weren’t careful. Our waddlers also had bottles and purees as necessary and took naps as needed, although everyone was in the crib during the scheduled quiet time to transition them. I’m not saying this to worry you, I’m sure your baby will be fine, it’s just odd to me they don’t have a transition room. What is the toddler room ratio?
Post # 7
Jijitattoo: I think you’re right — I need to change the way I look at it, especially because I don’t want DD to pick up on any of my anxiety about it. I don’t know any of the other moms, but I am friendly with the daycare teachers so I’m sure they would be more than happy to talk about how kids do with the transition, and probably even let DD do some half-and-half transition days from toddy to baby room. I will talk to them about it next week, I think.
urchin: I might not be understanding the food rules properly — I will definitely need to talk to them about that as well. I feel like the one area where I’m way behind as a parent is in the feeding arena. DD will eat anything, but we still only give her purees and finger foods like those baby cheetos and baby mum mums and such. Moving up to giving her actual food to eat is just this overwhelming thing that I can hardly imagine doing! (even though I felt the exact. same. way when it came time to start solids in the first place).
It will definitely be good for her development, though. She’s been a little slow on her milestones, and I think part of that is because she’s the oldest kid in the baby room so she’s got nobody to emulate!
Post # 8
MrsHalpert: I knew there were some daycare teachers on the boards, so I’m glad you chimed in! A couple weeks ago, Audrey’s baby room teachers were suggesting starting to transition towards one nap, since she had been pretty much staying awake until almost noon for a couple days. But then she abruptly put a stop to that and was back to her usual 2 nap schedule. Part of my problem is that she has completely different schedules at daycare vs at home. At daycare, she only takes short little naps because there’s more going on and she wants to play, plus there’s more likely to be a loud noise waking her up. But at home on the weekends, she catches up on sleep with these luxurious long naps. I guess it’s okay if she continues like that when she moves up — more naps on the weekends and then 1 nap a day at school, if needed.
And there have been days that I’ve gone to pick DD up and found that one of the babies who had moved up to the toddy room recently was hanging out in the baby room. It’s hard on the teachers, too — I mean they’ve been playing with her every day and suddenly they will hardly see her anymore! So everyone works together to make the transition a little easier 🙂
Post # 9
iarebridezilla: you might also try to help her get on the same schedule at daycare and at home if possible, at least until she gets fully in the swing of things.
hopefully you both have a great, easy transition. just think of it as an accomplishment that she’s able to do it! 🙂
Post # 10
I know it’s scary OP, I went through it too but because our mat leave is 1 year, the infant to toddler transition happens between 16 & 18 months. For DD, being around the older kids actually turned out great. I was amazed by how much faster she started to develop & hit her milestones. I know that it won’t happen the same for all kids but DD’s speaking skills advanced in leaps & bounds & she instigated potty training on her own at 18 months because of her exposure to it at daycare. Obviously you trust the facility so know in your heart that will do everything they can to make it comfortable & easy for her.
But I must say that 1 seems really young for only one nap. She will be really tired for the first couple of weeks but I guess they must get used to it. I would hope they let them sleep if they obviously need it. Little lambs growing so fast, they NEED their sleeeeeep.
Good luck & keep us posted.
Post # 11
I feel like I could’ve written this post. They’re moving DD up at the end of this month, even though she’s not a year old until the middle of September. One nap (12:30-3) on a cot instead of a crib and no bottles either. I’m panicked about that because she’s such a picky eater that I can’t imagine her only relying on food and not having a bottle ALL day.
I think for now, I’m going to still let her take two naps on the weekends if she wants to. DD is like yours…she catches up on her sleep on the weekends because everything is just so exciting at daycare that she barely naps. Have they put her in with the toddlers before? Sometimes they bring DD over to the toddler room (for 30 mins or so) to play and she fits right in. They have the younger toddlers and the older toddlers separated too. I honestly think she’ll love it… I think the problem is I’m not ready for her to just not have a bottle anymore and to not get to nap in a crib.
Post # 12
MaggieF: I’m sure they won’t be, like, waking her up if she desperately needs a nap or something, haha. Maybe the toddler room will be so exciting that she won’t want to nap anyway!! I guess we shall see …
BeatlesFan629: DD has never gone in with the toddlers before, but I’m sure they will do a few practice days before tossing her in there full time. You and I definitely sound like we’re in the same boat! I haven’t even looked in the toddler room before, maybe because I’m in denial about the whole thing haha. I will do some exploring next week, and hopefully once I get more info I’ll feel better about the whole thing. I don’t even know how many kids are in there, or how they’re separated, or where they sleep, or what they do all day … I know nothing!!
Post # 13
- Wedding: October 2014 - Cape May
iarebridezilla: is there a transition of any type set up at your day care to help her and you adapt to the new room and schedule? We usually allow 1-2 weeks depending on the child to slowly spend more time in a new class. It starts with an hour and moves up to all day, allowing her to gradually get used to the changes. If not, perhaps you could ask about spending time in the new class?
Post # 14
iarebridezilla: They’re sending her to the toddler room based only on her age? She should be toddling to be in the toddler room- at least that’s how they do it where I am. They do a slow transition over a week or 2. The baby will start spending a couple of hours a day in the new room. Sometimes the main baby teacher will go with for a short time (like 15 min) to ease baby into the new room. They don’t just one day start in a brand new room.
As for food, yeah, it’s time to get on it. As for your love of highly seasoned foods, leave out the salt and super spicy and everything goes. By this age she has the skills to do it- she will really enjoy it I bet! My 7 month old eats everything and it’s a lot of fun to watch!
Post # 15
I’ve work at a daycare, primarily the infant rooms, for about 4 years. The nap thing is one of the biggest transitions, but they do transition, some just have a harder time than others. All the kids I’ve watched (probably 100+) have started several solid finger foods by 8-9 months. They all eat the same thing, based on age. The main difference with our daycare is all the kids transition from the baby room to the toddler room at the same time, if they make the 1 yr cut on transition day so the teachers work will all of them and they all get in a routine together and the routine can change each year based on the kids. Not all of them walk by the time they enter, but always start very soon when they see all the other kids running around, it’s more motivation for them to try hard. She may have a great transition right away or it may take several weeks, but she’ll get there and the teachers will know how to help if she’s struggling.