Babies and ChildrenNursery or Nursery School?

Nursery or Nursery School?

If you have a young child, you may have already wondered whether to choose between daycare and a nursery school. What are their differences? We help you choose the best option.

Either because of work or because we consider it beneficial for our son to enter an institution where he can interact with children his age, we have to decide where to “keep” him. It is here when the question arises between whether to enroll our son in a nursery or a Nursery School. But… They are the same, right?

The definitive and resounding answer is no. A nursery school and a nursery school are not the same. In what they are the same is in the age of their “clients” from 0 to 6 years.

What is a nursery?

The nursery does the functions of “keeping” our children, by this we mean that its objective is to make the waiting time pleasant while the parents work.

In a nursery, more importance is given to aspects related to the care of the baby or child.  The rooms are more oriented to the basic needs of your child, having inside highchairs, cots, etc. and the materials with which the child plays have a particularly playful purpose.

The professionals who will take care of your child must have a first aid course and be Early Childhood Education Technicians or Assistants.

These centers are not subject to follow any type of educational project or any methodology. In this way, they are not linked to the Educational System and therefore do not follow any type of pedagogical objectives.

What is an Early Childhood Education Center?

These centers are basically educational. They focus on the formation of skills and the evolution of social, cognitive, psychomotor, etc.

Early Childhood Education centers prioritize education over care. This does not mean that in schools children are not cared for in their basic needs (diapers, eating, playing), but that there is an educational routine that is combined with care and both spaces are well defined and separated.

The professionals who will take care of your child in this case will be holders of the university degree of Teaching in Early Childhood Education or Higher Technician in Early Childhood Education. In addition, there may be more assistance personnel as assistants.

These centers are governed by the Organic Law of Education and therefore are not only part of the Spanish Educational System, but adhere to a curriculum where the objectives, content and evaluation are standardized throughout the State. It is for this reason that Early Childhood Education centers are more susceptible to both academic and health inspections, in order to preserve educational quality.

So what do I choose?

As you can see, both choices are different, neither better nor worse, you just have to analyze which one best suits your needs. Some criteria that you can take into account are:

  • Hours: ask yourself in what time slot you need these services and for how long. The nurseries have more flexible hours while the Nursery Schools, as we mentioned, follow a more organized school day. On the other hand, if you are not going to leave the child for many hours or if you are not going to take him / her daily, a nursery will probably be more profitable for you since your child will not lose “the thread” of the educational projects that are developed in the Schools.
  • Price: educational services are usually more expensive (except public ones) than daycare services. Keep in mind that the professionals who work in Early Childhood Education centers are very well prepared and are at the same level as any other teacher who works in a school.
  • Objective: if your objective is for your child to interact with other children and what you are looking for is to socialize, you do not have to go to a Nursery School, remember that compulsory schooling begins at 6 years of age. In the event that you prefer that your child already begins to study the educational curriculum focused on the development and evaluation of social, cognitive, motor skills, etc., the nursery is not your place.

Once all these aspects and others such as the proximity or the quality of the professionals have been weighed, you will have a clear answer. In case you still have any doubts, we recommend that you visit the facilities of the centers and ask for more information there.


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