First Day Blues

Starting school in preschools, kindergartens or child care centres is an exciting milestone for both children and parents alike. But it is never easy, especially for the little ones. This is a period of huge adjustment and can be a very stressful time. Being left without mommy in a room full of other children can cause a lot of anxiety for first timers.

That said, you can take steps to prepare yourself and your child for this new experience. Help him accept the situation and actually enjoy being in school, learning and making new friends.

Make The Right Choice

Choose the right preschool that caters to your child’s needs. It is important the learning environment is conducive and suited to your child’s personality. Find out if there is a visiting day or orientation for both you and your child. This is a good opportunity for you to observe classes to know how the teachers handle the children. Also, speak to the teachers about the preschool, its daily activities as well as anything else you might have questions about. Taking your child along is a good idea for your child to experience the new environment but yet feel safe with you around.

Make It Exciting

Be enthusiastic when talking about the preschool. Explain to your child why it is important for him to start schooling, and describe all the fun activities he will be enjoying. It is natural for your child to express fear and anxiety but, instead of brushing it off, talk to your child patiently to ease his fears.

Get Into A Routine

Start to adjust your child’s sleeping and breakfast schedules in the weeks leading up to the first day of preschool. This will help with the transition and make it more comfortable when it finally comes. You can even engage in some ‘pretend play’ with your child, creating a schedule very much like what he will experience in preschool.

Be There For Your Child

On the actual day of school, be present with your child during the first few hours. However, don’t stay the entire day to watch over your child. He will need to get used to the idea of you not being there. Mollycoddling your child in this instance will not help ease the situation. And when picking up your child, make sure you are on time! This helps provide your child with a sense of security.

Talk About It

Ask your child about his or her first day. Show interest in his activities and praise him for a successful first day at school. This will help your child know he has done well. He will look forward to going back to school again.

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