January 9, 2012

A Day at the Museum & Some Advice {PLEASE}

We enjoyed a nice weekend at home with not a lot going on...it was great to have nothing planned for a change! On Saturday, we decided to go to the Science Museum.
Manny was obsessed with the water table and we spent the majority of the time there. He would push the boats and ducks and say "whee" the whole time. There were some bigger kids there, but he bellied up to the table without hesitation and held his own.
Once we drug him away from the water table, he had fun checking out the optical illusion room. Of course he thought the table and chairs were cool, though he was a little frustrated he couldn't climb up on them on his own. They also had these little circle mazes on the floor and he would spin around on them until he got so dizzy he fell down. Silly boy.

Now. On to more important issues. I need your advice. PLEASE. For the past few weeks, Manny has not done well when I drop him off at nursery or MDO. As soon as we walk in, he immediately snuggles in to me and starts whimpering because he knows what's coming (which absolutely BREAKS my heart). When I hand him off, he starts crying but they can usually calm him down with toys or a snack. However, he still wants to be held, and if they put him down he starts crying and won't stop unless they pick him up. So it typically results in them calling me to come get him since it's not realistic for him to be held the whole time. I've only been called to come get him at MDO once right before Christmas break, but he starts back up tomorrow and I'm worried it's going to be more of the same. I'm fortunate that his MDO is great and always really patient with him. He does have a favorite teacher there though, and she's a sucker for holding him a lot...which I told her she doesn't need to, but I know she's just trying to be helpful.

Here's the thing...it's not like I hold him a lot at home, so I don't know why he's insisting on being held these other places. In fact, I rarely hold him at home because he's always on the go and is excellent at independent play. I've tried going in and helping him transition by playing with him there, etc., but that only seems to make it worse. I know most likely this is "just a phase" and will pass, but if you have any input or advice on what to try I'd love to hear it!


  1. Leave quickly. Staying makes it worse. Ava was bad about this. One thing that helped: she liked "helping" the teacher do something especially if it included leaving the room. This distracted her while I left & by the time she realized it, it helped. I know it's awful leaving them crying but in my experience, this won't last long.

  2. Hi Sarah, I am so sorry to hear about Manny, nothing breaks your heart more than knowing they are crying when you leave them!!!

    We had a similar issue with Jillian when she transferred into her new room at daycare. She was not familiar yet with her new surroundings so every drop off was ugly for almost a month! We tried everything! We would stay a few extra minutes and eat breakfast with her or her teachers would try distracting her with toys while we tried to leave, etc. Jillian only attends daycare 2 days a week so I think her transition took a lot longer than most of the other kids in her class, although I have a few co-workers who drop their toddlers off 5 days a week and go through bad drop off stages too. I think everyone goes through it at some point or another.

    I don't have a lot of good advice but just wanted to say how we recenltly went through a similiar situation and my heart goes out to you! She eventually grew out of it and warmed up to her teachers and her new surroundings. I am certainly thinking of you and Manny! You are not alone!

  3. I'm not there yet with my own little one, but when I worked in numerous jobs with kids... the number one thing is that when he gets there, if he has any friends in the class, you should encourage him to go play ASAP! Once most kids start playing with a friend, they get wrapped up in that.

    I know he's still a little young and I'm sure it's just a phase (albeit a trying one!) so lots of hugs!!

  4. My son went through this when we first started MDO. I found that if I made him walk in it was much easier to give him to the teacher and quickly get out of site. They really know how to tug on our hearts! Hope things get better!

  5. I am dealing with the same thing! All of a sudden Noah went from being this little guy that told everyone hello to putting his head on my shoulder when we go out! And he has even started crying when I leave him at his g-parent's house! He has def. become attached! And I am like you at home! I am hoping this is just a phase! Everyone keeps telling me to just keep dropping him off and it will get better! But it is sooo hard! It just breaks my heart!!! And now I am about to start working out at a gym so I am debating between the gym nursery or a MDO at our church!! Which terrifies me!! I know he is gonna freak. So just know you are NOT alone!!!

  6. My daughter who is 18 months is going through this now as well. She just had her 18 month checkup and her doc said it's very normal at this age to go through this clinginess once again. Hope it gets better soon!

  7. It most likely is just a phase, but I definitely know it is tough! Having worked in childcare I would also suggest just trying to get out of there as quick as possible. When parents would linger to try and help the transition it seemed as though the kid figured if they cried or whined enough they could get mommy or daddy to stay or take them home. Also helping the teachers thing, if they have something they can let him help with for a minute while you leave that would be awesome too.

    I know it isn't easy, I hope he starts loving it again soon!

  8. My 16 month old is the same way. Although she doesn't attend daycare or MDO, anytime I drop her off at the nursery at church she cries. And she's been doing that since she was 6 months old. But, just in the last few months, her clingy-ness has intensified. I'm assuming it is just a phase too. I've had friends who work in the nursery, but also know her from outside of the nursery. They say that whenever they are in there, she only wants them and doesn't want to be put down. The only thing I know to do is to tell her bye and leave quickly when I drop her off. And pray that she gets better someday. :) Hope it gets better for you soon!

  9. I am on the other end of things...I am the 12-24mo old teacher at a MDO program. My best advice...drop him off first (before the other kids get there) and have her meet you to get him outside of the classroom. Then the classroom becomes "his" territory and not the place you drop him off/make him sad. I had a kid in my class I had to do this with or all day was spend reassuring him mommy would be back. If the teacher can't get him outside of the room, maybe the director or an aid could do it?? Another tip would be to get there a last of the class so the other kids are all settled and happy so he doesn't pick up on their tension. But truely..it is a phase and he will outgrow it. It takes time and patience on the teachers part. I understand their frustration in wanting to call, but if they do it every day, he will learn that the outcome of crying is mommy comes...that is the opposite thing you want to teach him if you are going to stick with an MDO type setting. I hope that he outgrows it quickly for both of your sakes, but know you are not alone..it took a good 2-3 months for all of the kids to settle into staying with no tears in my class. He will catch on soon :)

  10. Sarah, Emery does the same thing at the church nursery. I just don't think that she enjoys playing with kids her age yet...she prefers older kids (elementary aged). This past Sunday we talked about being a big girl the whole way to church, and when we got there I told her that she was going to go in and play with her friends and that Mommy was going to go learn about Jesus, but she would be RIGHT back to get her. I asked her to say yes m'am and she did. She didn't cry when we left, but apparently she got upset in the middle of nursery...go figure!! ha...It's so sad I know, but they will get used to it...I guess you just gotta do what you gotta do :)

  11. First, your hair grows SO fast! I feel like I have been growing mine out forever and yours looks so much longer! You look great!

    Second, I used to teach an 18 month old class at a private preschool here and it is better if you leave quickly. I know it's so hard when they are crying but they usually get used to the transition much quicker the faster mom gets out of there. Usually having them walk in helps too although that might be hard at first. Ask the teacher if he has a special toy he prefers to play with during the day and maybe she can try to distract him with that. It is most likely just a phase (a HARD phase for us mommies) but it will get better. =) I would love to be a stay at home mommy but at least I get to drop Maycee off at the next best place, my Mom's! She's so spoiled there that usually she's telling me bye as soon as we walk in and I'm the one crying! ha!

    Hope you all are enjoying the new area!

  12. Hey Sarah
    I just love days out to the museum...get a family pass it will pay off very quickly:)
    I am so sorry your little man is going through this. Just like the others said...its a phase and this too shall pass. I do suggest dropping and leaving. I know it is hard, but you both can do it:)

  13. SO much fun! We have the same problem when dropping off.. and now that DD is home with grandma for 2 months I know it will be hard starting her back up mid February.. I will be bracing myself.. it's just rough.. :-(


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