I was at daycare last night picking up, and I was putting on Dyls's jacket, and she was complaining as she often does when I put on her jacket, and one of her teachers came up and said to me, "Oh Dyls, you ALWAYS have something to cry about."
At the time I just sort of laughed and said, "Yeah she's never liked it when I put her coat on," but looking back on the situation now I'm thinking more like, "Wait WHAT was that you said? You mean my child does this A LOT when she's here? Because she doesn't do it at home. What exactly are you doing to her?"
Maybe it was just an offhand comment that didn't really mean anything. Or maybe it was like the comment they made about my breastmilk all those months ago when they actually *were* annoyed at how I was storing my milk, but wouldn't come right out and tell me what they wanted me to do.
Other things about that place bother me too. For instance, the teachers seem to have favorites, and these favorites do not include my child. I thought when Dyls was super young that it was just because she was little and didn't do much. But even looking back then, the teachers would fawn all over one or two of the children and.... not exactly ignore.... but definitely not bestow as much affection on the other children. And somehow, the recipient of all that attention was always a little boy. At least in Dyls's classroom that's how it goes.I don't know though. Maybe it's because by the time I show up to pick her up, most of the other kids are already gone, and that's just what I see.
They also frequently negatively compare Dyls's development to a boy in her class who is about a month older. She's the same size as he is, and she walked before he did, but his verbal skills are more advanced. I always hear about how smart and wonderful he is from the teachers. I wonder if they openly praise Dylan's gross motor skills and say she's going to be a great athlete to the other mom when she picks her son up. Somehow I doubt it. In fact, I have at times gotten the impression that they don't *like* that she has advanced motor skills. One time a teacher (the same one) said, "Dyls is just SO BUSY," with this tone like Dylan was going around and getting into things *too* much. I don't know, but I always thought this was just was babies and toddlers were supposed to do.
The other thing that's a little weird? Dyls is a really really good eater. To the point where her consumption sometimes borders on the obscene. But, in case you neurotic food freaks are concerned about her impending obesity, she's consistently been in the 80th percentile for height and weight, so apparently she needs the calories. Anyway, whenever I talk about her eating with her teachers, there are times that they have looked a little disgusted when they talk about her consumption. Like they don't approve of her very large appetite or something.
I know someone is going to jump in and tell me one of the following:
1. Alert alert you need to find alternative childcare arrangements RIGHT NOW!!!!
2. You are so socially inept that you can't figure out what they mean? Here's how you should be communicating with them.
3. You are a terrible mother for not pulling her out of daycare immediately and staying home with her.
4. You are hypersensitive and overthinking. None of this means anything.
My plan is this: in a month or two she is going to graduate to the young toddler classroom, and we will see how it goes once she is in there. Plus the au pair will be arriving in a month (!). My thought is that if I continue to get the vibe that they just don't like my child very much, we will switch to a nursery school part time, au pair full time arrangement when she gets to be 2 or 3. We'll have to see though.
I am VERY attuned to this kind of thing, because it happened to me all the time when I was growing up, and my parents could never figure out what to do. My teachers would tell them that I was "bad" and that they should "punish" me more often when I was "bad" at home. They would never give specifics about the behaviors they objected to though, and my parents could never figure out what they were talking about because they thought my behavior at home was completely acceptable. Looking back, I also have no idea what they could have possibly been referring to. I think that the real problem was that my elementary school was just an exceptionally poor fit for me, and things did get better when I went to a different school. Unfortunately, it took 7 years for my parents to make the switch, and 5 of those years were absolutely horrible, in retrospect. God, being a kid sucked.
Anyway. If you have any thoughts, let me know! For the record, in most respects we're very happy with our daycare, and feel that Dyls is safe and happy there too.