When thinking about your child’s attributes in the journey called parenting, It looks like a roller coaster ride with its up’s being “Setting futuristic goals” and down’s being “How to deal with parenting fears”, juggling and self-reflecting, satisfying and self-doubting.
Time passes quickly and your little munchkin is no more a mum-humming bird and in fact, has an opinion of his/her own. Being a parent its a “Heart-wrenching decision”, to leave your child on her first day of kindergarten. Trust me it’s more than anything you would have desired to do, in your entire life.
There is definitely a positive perspective on it, each one of us has faced it and will have to keep up, there should be no sort of agony, for you as a parent will need to deal with it, smoothly rather than proving to be a hurdle at your child’s momentous occasion of conquering his/her fears associated with the First Day, First KG Step.
So how can you help your child be less agitated and regain his/her calm?
Definitely, there are ways to prevent emotional outbursts and help secure your child a good, positive impression on his/her very first milestone.
Special pre preparations and activities before and after the first day will give your child a positive outlook of a KG environment and will help him understand kindergarten as a new familiar place to play and grow, rather than a scary everyday separation task:
Know, the 10 tips for parents on their child’s first day of school
How do you feel about going to a place that you have already heard of or you have already seen it from outside?
Yes, it sounds easy to think, helps you to bring a picture in your mind, hence affecting your decision to go or refrain.
Same way, help your child get an idea of what exactly he will be seeing on his very first day of KG. If possible, frequently visit KG in the working hours, help your child familiarize with teachers, staff, building, drive around KG.
How about doing a school story session every day with your child? children are born optimistic and as a parent, we must learn from them.
Create some optimistic story about school, what is the place like, why it is called so? Or you can portray the character of a teacher or a funny child who is going to find new friends, new stationary, play with new toys etc.
It is very important for your child to be familiar and keen on exploring at KG, teachers are there to assist but given the first day of as many as 30 children together is stressful for them too. Let your child select her school bag, lunch box, a colour she likes the most, helps her select the outfit she would love to wear, everything from the start of the day to the final stage of coming back with lots of new experiences.
4. Help them make new friends
Everything new with the change in social setting, teachers, staff, seeing so many kids together can be frightening for them and also make you as a parent worrisome. Parents can help by bridging the gap and introducing their child, asking other children in a fun way to uncover new exciting activities and get friendly with other classmates. Try meeting their friends beforehand and explore more about the similar interests that can connect them after school as well. Getting to know kids who can be living in the neighbourhood can prove a major help when sending off your child on a bus ride.
5. Celebrate the special day
Kids like to mimic parents in a lot of activities. Your active involvement will pique her curiosity and help her plan a celebratory meal for the first day of school. If the plan falls into place you can set a weekly menu-card that is customized by your kids and can help them orient towards a healthy eating pattern.
6. Be Transition Ready
Kids are very sensitive to feelings, especially the ones they are deeply connected too. The more anxiety on your face the harder for a kid to let go off. If your child is showing signs of separation anxiety, follow the class teacher guidelines; some will want you to stay in the classroom for a short time, while others will assure you a smooth sail.
Here are a few resources to try:
- Say you have work to do and will be back at lunchtime. Assure them you are nearby and definitely thinking about them.
- Something that you’ll be looking forward to hearing about their first-day fun.
- Ease them by suggesting that teachers are there to help them with new activities.
- Stay for a few minutes (if necessary and with the teacher’s agreement).
- Begin a dialogue; appreciating that they will be doing things on their own; they are amazing and will be teaching you what they do today.
7. Listen carefully
Let her talk about what she might feel like a good thing about going to school or if there is something she is nervous about. Children leave cues for parents to understand that something is bugging them maybe not in words, just simple shrug, running away, not answering etc. So watch for these expressions, notice the topics he or she brings up repeatedly and understand his or her tone of voice. Excitement is always loud but fear is whispered. Be encouraging, and if necessary, keep reassuring.
8. Talk and Discuss
Kids need a constant reassuring and exciting discussion. Speaking about the new things school offers such as colouring, drawing, singing, playing and learning about new things. If there are elder kids in the family, take their help, rope them in a fruitful discussion about what they like the most in their school (facilities, infrastructure and creative learning), what are the fun activities they enjoy, how cool is their new teacher. You can also start the discussion by sharing your own experiences, telling them about the things you liked about school, your good memories, the nice teachers and so on.
9. Transitional Toy
It’s very hard to tackle emotional bonding that your child might develop with any of her homely soft toy or a simple toy that comforts her.
What are these Transitional toys?
These are special comforts that provide emotional support to your child in all conditions and provides a sense of relief.
You might be surprised to know that a child picks his/her transitional toy at a tender age of just 8 months. The transitional toy can be any best toy that your child might be attached to. They are called so because they help children make the emotional transition from a completely dependent child to an independent self. They work because they feel good: They’re soft, cuddly, and nice to touch, very much holding a sense of familiarity.
This so-called lovey transitional toy has child’s own scent on it or can have her mothers scent on it and it reminds her of the comfort and security of her own room, her own house. It makes her feel that everything is going to be okay.
These transitional toys can be of great help when dealing with the stress happening on the very First day of school. Let your child carry her favourite toy (the one that comforts her), to the school and see how relaxed she will be.
The transitional toy should not be too big to block her vision or make her immobile to participate in school activities.
Lastly be schedule ready
It’s very important for your child to start fresh in the morning. Scheduling a day prior to the first day, waking up an hour early to finish your household chores, clothes already set out, breakfast planned and prepared. Timed delivery of all these things and a small to-do list is important to keep you on time and to help you the get the extra time; that you can invest preparing your kid for a fun, calm and hassle-free way.
When you start the big day preparation, just bear in mind few things that will help ease your balance:-
- Clothes chosen by your kids are already set out the night before.
- Try sticking to a sleep schedule 15 days prior to your big day, putting your kids in bed at a reasonable hour will help them get oriented to school timings.
- The breakfast menu should be well decided beforehand. This will allow you to pre-prepare and get plenty of extra time for a calm, unhurried breakfast.
- Remember its very important to stick to a schedule because kids require some quality time in the morning to get going.
The first week of school is an excellent opportunity to get accustomed and stick to a well-scheduled plan, that can work for a year. Also, it gives you an insight into how much effort you can put in and decide what is working for you and your child
Kindergarten is an exciting time for your kids. This is the first milestone that will be remembered and cherished lifelong. Make most of this time, encourage them, love them, appreciate them, help them to learn and do what all new things they want to try. Do everything you can to support this excitement, and nurture it. show how it makes you a proud parent, and keep inculcating it as long as possible.
We Hope You have enjoyed reading about How to Prepare your Child for the First Day of Kindergarten or School. Let’s us know about your experience using the comments section.