Tops Day Nurseries have been working closely with baby wearing consultant, Kizzy, from Babywearing South West.
Babywearing is becoming increasingly more common in the UK with many parents choosing to ‘wear’ their babies to help them settle and also as an alternative to a pushchair.
As a group of day Nurseries we are finding that more and more children are used to being carried at home, and therefore are expecting the same 1:1 care in the Nursery environment. On a legal 1:3 / 1:4 ratio this can be particularly challenging for the staff team and distressing for the young child.
Children’s physical, neurological and psychological development is nurtured through positive relationships and strong attachment. The use of slings/carriers enable caregivers to meet the individual needs of a child, whilst providing a safe and secure environment, building those positive relationships and attachments, whilst also continuing to be able to complete other tasks at the same time.
Benefits of carrying for the child
- The use of carriers in a setting allows for some of that continuity, comfort and familiarity of routine from home life into the nursery setting.
- For some children this supports their nap and sleep routines.
- Use of carriers supports the building of safe and secure attachments with the nursery staff. This can be especially helpful during settling in and transition periods.
- Carriers can support caregivers in meeting and responding to a child’s needs quickly. Using a carrier can be an effective way to calm and support a child who may be upset or need support to calm.
- Many children like to be held whilst exploring their surroundings, especially those who are not fully mobile. The use of a carrier is able to support staff carrying children in a way which respects the staff’s physiology and posture therefore children are able to be carried for longer.
- Carrying a child in a sling enables them to take comfort and a rest from what can be a busy environment during times of over-stimulating and over-tiredness.
- Being carried at adult height enables a new perspective of the world around them, observing communications and interactions. This supports the learning especially social and emotional development, understanding the world around them, language and communication as well as other areas of learning.
In December 2019 all of our Managers were trained on how to safely use a baby carrier. This training will be cascaded to all Nursery staff and any new colleagues.
Carrying children at Tops Day Nurseries will be carried out in line with our respectful care approach and will only be used in the best interest of the child to ensure they are settled and secure at Nursery. If you would like further information about how we will be using baby carriers in our settings, please speak to your Nursery Manager for more information or to request a copy of our baby wearing policy.
Carrying using a sling has many benefits for both the wearer and the child, however it can be overwhelming to choose the right one for your needs as well as learning how to carry in a comfortable and safe manner.
Tops Day Nurseries have selected to use the carrier Kahu Baby. This carrier has been tested to standard TR 16512:2015. Suitable for carrying a child from 3.2kg-16kg. All staff will have access to and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
For further support, questions or enquiries please contact Kizzy at Babywearing South West by email firstname.lastname@example.org