“Parents told not to feel guilty if they stray from school timetable”

This week, The London Preschool Group featured in an interview with The Evening Standard. Please read the article below:

Parents of young children should stop trying to follow a strict nursery routine during lockdown and allow them to use technology, the head of a group of London preschools said.

Anne Sheldon, who runs The London Preschool, a group of four nurseries in the capital, said parents must not feel guilty for failing to carrying out formal lessons to prepare their children for starting school, adding household chores such as sorting washing and laying the table are educational enough.

She admitted previously being strongly against babies and toddlers using video communication, but has changed her mind as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Mrs Sheldon said: “I know parents will be feeling guilty and worrying that they don’t have the skills to teach their children. But they do have skills they can use. Getting children to help wash up and tidy up is teaching them as well. Just by taking children for a walk and pointing out blossom and feeling and smelling it, they will learn.

“Children can help set the table and estimate how many knives and forks will be needed. Sorting washing is a fantastic activity. It involves categorising things. They can sort it by colour, or size, or match the socks.”

The London Preschool runs nurseries in West Finchley, Muswell Hill, Finchley and Winchmore Hill.

Mrs Sheldon, who has two grandchildren, said technology can help families during the lockdown.

She said: “I used to be really against FaceTime for babies. But technology is now another way of keeping the bond going with grandparents. I have a very close bond with my grandchildren. FaceTime calls bring me great joy.”

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