Dear Pickle,

Oh, my baby boy. We are so very proud of you. This month, we had your first ever Parents’ Evening at Nursery and I don’t know why, but I was quite nervous beforehand. You see, it’s difficult to know how you’re doing, developmentally. I’m not a toddler expert. I don’t know what’s normal at your age. It’s difficult to know if you should be doing more. Saying more. Communicating better. Or whether you’re doing exactly what’s expected of you.

Pickle playing in the park with a sun hat on

I don’t want to compare you to your friends, as all children are different! Some of your friends are incredible talkers – they can properly hold a conversation and make up their own lyrics to songs. Some of your friends are amazing physically – they can kick balls with precision, have brilliant throwing arms and are fearless climbers on the park. Some of your friends show incredible empathy for others! They are kind and really socially confident. You and your friends are all so unique and wonderful, each in your own way, each with your own strengths… how could I possibly compare? You all excel in different things, but does that mean I should worry if you seem ‘behind’ in certain areas? Should I be worried that you don’t sing nursery rhymes or tell me when you’ve got a dirty nappy?

Blowing Bubbles with Auntie Sol

Pickle blowing bubbles with his Auntie Sol

I like to think we do lots of enriching activities with you, but how do I know if I’m doing enough? Or doing the right things? Although we go on nice trips out and enjoy time in the park, we are a bit of a CBeebies family. Is that okay? Are we doing all we could to help you develop the way you should be? It’s so hard to know.

I wanted to know from Nursery what they thought. They see children come and go all the time. They know all about the Early Years Foundation Stage. They know where you should be at, so your first Parents’ Evening is a big deal to me. But I needn’t have worried that much. I was blown away by their feedback.

Pickle wearing an AMAZING t-shirt coming out of a tunnel

They split their report into different areas, covering all aspects of your development. It covered all the Early Learning Goals: communication and language, physical development, personal, social and emotional development, literacy, mathematics, understanding the world and expressive arts and design. Your key worker gave you a development band for each. I was beaming with pride when she told us that you were either bang on where you should be, or even a little ahead. There was one area you are struggling with: managing feelings and behaviours. But don’t worry, baby boy. I’m on it! I’m going to do some research, and see what we can do to help you here.

Pickle needs to manage his emotions better!

You know what? You’re just doing so well. I can’t believe how well! And I am so proud of you. I always want you to know that. Your very first Parents’ Evening and it was wonderful. Keep doing what you’re doing, little one. Keep learning through play. Stay curious. Be adventurous.

LPD letting Pickle climb up the walls of the underpass

But maybe stop trying to hit people, yeah?