Merridy (Australia) writes:

I first met Shoma a year ago when I was searching for a good Tagesmutter, and she invited me and my two year old son to come and visit her at Little Dodos. Although we live about thirty minutes away by public transport, I was encouraged by what I saw on Shoma's informative website, not just that she spoke english with the children in her care (our son is being brought up bilingually), but because I could already sense that Shoma saw her work as more of a vocation than 'a job'.

When Shoma opened the door, the first thing that struck me was what a calm, almost serene young woman she is. Her english is faultless, and her manner with Henry was effortlessly warm and inviting. Henry can sometimes be wary of strangers, but he immediately sensed with Shoma that he was safe, and that she was genuinely interested in him. We sat in her beautiful, sunny playroom, surrounded by shelves of books and toys, and while my son played happily with another little boy in her care, Shoma told me about herself and Little Dodos. Although I was extremely impressed by her CV and qualifications (Shoma’s study and experience in early childhood development is extensive to say the least!) it was the relaxed, accessible and intelligent manner in which she spoke to the children that impressed me the most. Not to mention the way they (including my son!) listened to her. I knew straight away that we had found an exceptional Tagesmutter, and that Henry would be in wonderful hands at Little Dodos. And when my husband met Shoma some days later, he felt the same.

Over the next few months, I was delighted to meet the other children in Shoma's care, and their parents. Again I was impressed by the easy, accessible way Shoma communicated with us all. It wasn’t unusual for us to pick up our children together and end up having a good laugh in the hallway, often with Steve, Shoma’s husband, whom I could see all the children simply adored. (Steve is one of those people children find hilarious, and like to climb over, and be tickled by, especially Henry.)

And speaking with the other parents, it was agreed that Shoma’s influence over our children was delightful. My son never found it particularly easy to share his toys at the Spielplatz, but thanks to Shoma, he learnt not only share, but to feel good about himself for doing so. Even more impressive, he began showing genuine compassion for other children, and is still the first one at the sight of an accident to administer sympathetic pats, hugs, and sometimes a kiss. He learnt much more than this, how to make things, sing songs, hop about like a rabbit, dance to music, but these are valuable life lessons, and I will always be grateful for Shoma’s positive influence.

I think the reason children listen to Shoma is that she has a unique and rare ability to speak to them on their level. She doesn't talk down to them, or put on baby voices, or go overboard in any way. Intuitively, she seems to understand that a child, even a two year old child, needs to feel visible and respected at all times, and needs to be listened to, no matter how hilarious or unreasonable his or her request may seem. I learnt a lot from watching her communicating with the young children in her care at Little Dodos, and I think the other parents did as well.

Finally I should say that Shoma never asked me to write a reference for her, which is typical, but I knew within weeks of meeting her that I wanted to. She is simply a very special young lady, and now a friend, whose skills as a Tagesmutter are unsurpassable. Our son is now old enough to go to a Kindergarten, but we will always keep in touch with Shoma and Steve, not just because Henry wants to see them again, but so do we!

Valerie (USA) says:

"We had our daughter, Jane, enrolled in Shoma Bhuruth's English language nursery from September, 2005 through July, 2006.  My husband is a university professor in the States who took his sabbatical in München, and I am a writer who works from her home office.  We wanted regular part-time childcare, and Jane was at "Little Dodos" every weekday fromnine in the morning until early afternoon.

This nursery was the first time we had our daughter cared for outside the home, and I cannot imagine a better experience than the one we had with Shoma.  The nursery is pleasant and filled with attractive, educational toys for the children to play with.  They are fed nourishing foods.  When possible, she takes them on adventures outside, and there were occasions

when Shoma personally dropped Jane off at my apartment (a 20 minute U-Bahn ride), because she knew I was ill or very busy that day.  She was extremely flexible with the schedule when she could be, accomodating not just our family but other families as well.  She was willing to listen to my concerns and offer her opinion and advice.  She frequently emailed parents digital photos she had taken that day of our children, which was very considerate.  And when we left Germany, Shoma presented us with a beautiful scrapbook of photos so that Jane could always remember the time

she spent there.

The best thing is I felt that Jane was going into a kind of surrogate family setting.  Sometimes Stefan, Shoma's husband, would be around to read books to and play with the kids as well, and Jane would have breakfast with the two of them when she first arrived in the morning.

Our daughter grew to love both Shoma and Steve; the other day, she spoke with them on the phone.  My husband and I have come to think of them as friends.  I hope we will always stay in touch and have made them a standing invitation to visit us in the States.

Shoma has my strongest possible recommendation.  Her nursery is a great place for native English speaking families and Germans who want their children to learn English as soon as possible.  But it is also an all around wonderful place for children to be nurtured and cared for."

Debbie (USA) writes:

We love Shoma! I can highly recommend Shoma and her home for nurturing, friendly, clean, healthy and fun child care.

Coming from the U.S., I wanted to find a sitter who spoke English and German, and couldn't have gotten a better person. My son always enjoyed going to her home, and most of the time told me he didn't want to leave when I came to pick him up.

She is creative, energetic and wise, and genuinely enjoys her role as child minder and care giver.  

As a mother of three, I have seen many different child care facilities and met with numerous care givers. Shoma is at the top of the list. Although he is now in kindergarten, my son still asks if he can go to Shoma's house!

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