Going to school for the first time is one of the major milestones in your child life- and yours, too, as a parent. It’s a marker for your child stepping into independence and starting a life outside of home.
While it can be very exciting (think of new friends to meet and new games to play), it can also be a stressful and terrifying experience. There are just so many things that could go wrong (at least if you have an overactive imagination or you tend to worry too much.)
How To Prepare Your Child For Preschool: No Tears Tips for Parents
1. Pay the School a Visit
Even before the actual first day, do pay the school a visit. And if possible, go inside and show your child his classroom. Point out where the toilet is, too- he might need to go that first day! And of course, don’t miss out on the library and playground. The heart and soul of a preschool. 🙂
Build up your child’s excitement about his new school. Tell him about all the fun things that he would learn and do.
At the same time, keep reminding him that while he’s busy at school, you’ll be waiting for him at home (or you’ll be in the office and you’ll see each other at home.) This will help him emotionally. He’ll be assured that while he’s not with you physically, you are still thinking of him and that you love him.
2. Meet The Teacher
Aside from checking out the different places in school, try to know the teachers and staff as well.
I’m sure your child is curious who his teacher will be. And believe me, your child’s teacher is excited to meet your little tike, too.
Take the opportunity to know more about your child’s teacher. It’s also the best time to ask questions. And if you have special requests and reminders, now is the time to do that, too. It’ll be more difficult to squeeze in some quality time with the teacher on the first day of school since she’ll be busy with the rest of the class (Believe me, I know!)
3. Start Managing Your Child’s Schedule
A few weeks before the school begins, try to follow a more defined schedule.
Set time for play, food and sleep. This will help your child transition to school better. Remember, students follow a certain schedule at school, and your child has probably been enjoying his time freely.
Particularly for sleep, it will be beneficial for your child to turn in early so he’ll be well rested. It’s hard to motivate a sleepy and cranky child to go to school, so make sure your child catches 8 hours fo zzz.
4. Prepare Your Child’s School Supplies
Get ready to stock up on the basics- especially if your child’s school doesn’t cover the school materials.
If the school provides everything that your child needs, then just prepare the following school necessities:
- school bag
- school shoes
- Sports shoes
- Lunch pack
- Uniform (if applicable)
(These things may vary from school to school, or even country to country. I recommend that on your school visit ask the teacher or school staff what you need to prepare. Or you may also wait for a note/list from the teacher. It’s pretty standard for the school to have reminders on the first day of school)
And for those whose supplies are not provided by the school, the following are the basic things your child will need:
- Coloured pencils or other colouring materials
- Art supplies
5. Condition Your Child
Getting your child ready and excited for school is one of the keys for him to develop a love for learning. And please don’t panic, but the first day of school is a critical moment in your child’s life.
As a preschool teacher (with more than a decade of experience), I’ve seen lots of different faces on the first day. Many are happy and excited. Some confused and reluctant. A few shy and quiet. And a couple who just aren’t ready yet.
I have observed that children whose parents are happy and excited tend to be that as well. While those with anxious parents are anxious themselves.
Children in general don’t have an idea what preschool is all about- at least not until they’ve gone to one and experienced it. Your toddler basically will base his feelings and opinions on what you project. So please be positive.
Those are the top 5 tips that you can do to help your child have the best first day of school.
I know you and your child can do it! Just remember to be prepared and be positive.
What are your concerns about your toddler’s first day in preschool?
Please do share your thoughts at the comment box below. I would love to hear from you.
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