do ofsted hate playpens?
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  1. #1
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    Default do ofsted hate playpens?

    Hi
    I just saw a really great playpen which is huge, it has activities built into the inside walls of it and a gate at one end to get in and out etc. I feel it would be great to contain toddlers/babies when playing or to put older chlidren in so that they can use toys with small parts or when they don't want the toddlers trashing their game! lol

    but then wondered how ofsted viewed playpens these days as I know I've read in the past that they' don't like them! lol.

    I know I should think more of how it would benefit the children in my setting etc rather than what ofsted think - but you know how it is!

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    Unfortunately there is no such thing as what 'Ofsted' think on anything outside written guidance, just a few hundred or so individual inspectors with their own ideas, pet hates, preferences and whims.

    So, if you can risk assess it, can talk the talk about the benefits and demonstrate responsible use of it then I think you'll be fine.

    There have been so many stories of odd inspectors not liking this, that or the other... and other inspectors not even mentioning those same things, it is just pot luck! You just do what you know will work in your situation. Try it, evaluate it etc.

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    I agree with Moggy. I do think though, that as soon as an inspector sees a playpen then they will be watching with interest, so be very careful about how you use it on Ofsted day, not that Ofsted day should be any different to any other day, but you know what I mean. When I was training to become a childminder I asked some of my friends what they thought made a good/bad childminder. One friend said that she went into one potential childminder's house and saw a playpen. She instantly made up her mind that that was not the childminder for her, so be prepared to explain how you use it with parents too. x

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    years ago, I went to new parents house to sign contracts etc and had to laugh that in the corner of the small sitting room ( that was full of toys and baby paraphanalia ( twins ), was a playpen ... containing a rocking chair .... mum said it was her safe place so the babies couldn't/wouldn't get her !!! ( plus they wouldn't trap their fingers under her rocking chair !!! )

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    I had a big square playpen for my own children, the big two used to go in there to play with small bits away from the baby.

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    I know some people use play pens to pop babies into when they need to leave the room for the toilet, or to get drinks, or to open the door to a parent - they can be useful when you have a biter, you can either pop the biter in when you need to leave the room or put the usual victim in. As long as you can explain to Ofsted (and visiting new parents) why you are using it eg: Health & Safety - so older children can have some piece and quiet and play with older resources that aren't suitable for babies or so you can leave the room for a second then I think you should be fine. It's not really any different than in Nursery where they use room dividers to separate the different ages of children, or maybe you could look at getting a Baby Dan room divider instead.

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