The thought of having to send your little one off to preschool this year, is probably tugging at your heartstrings. The time has come for your child to branch out, and get a chance in learning in a structured environment. The best part is they will get to be around children their own age, and learn new things from their little friends. However, regardless of all the positive aspects of sending your little one to preschool, you are still worried about separation anxiety. So, just how do you prepare you and your child for this big milestone in their life?
Visit the preschool often before the first day of school
Find out if your child can drop in on days that the class may not be full. Many schools also offer a part-time slot for parents wishing to transition their child into a full-time slot. Visiting often is a great way to get the child familiar with being in the classroom around other children. It also helps them get to know the teachers, and what will be expected of them every day.
Get to know some of the parents that have children in the class.
It is a great way to set up play dates. Play dates will allow your child the opportunity to get to know a child, or children better. At least then your child will see familiar faces and their first day of school.
Read books about going to school
Check your library for books about going to preschool. Read these books with your child, and be sure to point out the different characters, and what each might be feeling. Discuss with your little one about their feelings on the topic. Be sure to listen and empathize with their feelings.
Stay upbeat about the milestone in your child’s life
Going to school is a part of life. Your child has the perfect opportunity to gain some useful knowledge and be well-prepared by the time they reach elementary school. When speaking about preschool to your child, always say fun things, and remind them that they will be able to learn, play, and have fun with their friends.
Keep good-byes short
Do not allow your emotions to show, or get in the way of you leaving quickly. Say a quick good-bye, tell your little one you love them, and be on your way. Long good-byes open up the door to the child believing they are going home with you. If this should occur, allow the teacher to take control, and on the teachers cue, leave. Most preschool teachers are highly trained to work with little ones with separation anxiety.
Always discuss your child’s day with them
Ask questions upon picking your child up about their day. It is important to know how well they are adjusting. Hopefully, they will be overjoyed to tell you about the great time they had at school.
Yes, it can be difficult to send your little one off to preschool. However, once your little one becomes adjusted, and you see how well they are doing, you will know you made the right decision.