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A child’s first experience away from home can evoke anticipation and excitement, but it can also elicit apprehension and fear. As adults, we encounter similar feelings when making changes in our daily routines. Remembering your mixed feelings when you return to school or begin employment can help you understand how your child might feel during their first preschool days. The start of preschool can be stressful for both parent and child. Your child may be worried about meeting new people, learning new things, and being away from you. Parents worry about their child’s behavior, how their child will fare, and whether they will get the attention they need and deserve.

The best possible thing you can do for your child is to prepare them for what’s to come. Show them that this new experience is a positive one.

Preschool Transitioning Tips

Your child’s transition towards being in a preschool may feel nothing short of overwhelming. To help usher in a smooth transition, consider applying these helpful tips before and during their first day with us:

  1. Talk to your child about the fun they will have at preschool by making new friends, eating snacks, playing with toys, learning new skills, etc. Remember that even if they feel nervous or stressed about beginning preschool, you should always try to be positive when discussing preschool with your child.
  2. Allow enough time to be together in the morning.
  3. Tell your child the teacher’s name. Some of the stress involved is having to listen to a new adult.
  4. Teach your child to be responsible for putting away their toys and clothes at home. Allow them to do simple household tasks within their ability at home. This encourages your child to participate in helping clean up items at school.
  5. Teach your child safety rules. They will learn to follow safety rules at school.
  6. Make storytime a daily routine when you snuggle up together and enjoy each other’s company. Almost all popular cartoon characters have books about the first day of school. Make a special trip to the library or local bookstore and get some books related to the first day of school. It helps your child put the situation into perspective if they can identify with one or more of their favorite characters. After reading, let your child ask questions or express concerns. They are looking to you for comfort and reassurance.
  7. Make sure your child knows it is OK to ask questions. Many children worry about who they can turn to if they are unsure of something when in school. Let them know it is perfectly fine not to know something, and it is essential to ask questions. Stress to your child that we all have to ask questions sometimes, and that is the only way we can learn new things.
  8. As much as possible, stay consistent with morning routines and times and days of attending.
  9. Don’t be surprised if your child cries on the first day or begins to delay on their second or third day. The newness will eventually wear off, and realization will settle soon. Stay calm and let your child know you will be back whenever they plead with you not to leave. Please do your best not to hover; make the drop-off to preschool as quick and painless as possible. If your child wants you to stay, give them a time limit. During your first week establish number of kisses and hugs. We have found that establishing an exact number of reasonable hugs and kisses helps keep the routine consistent and gives the child an exact time when you will be leaving. Chances are, once you’re away, your child will be fine. Sometimes it takes mom and dad being gone for a child to truly embark on a new experience. During your child’s first week here, we will contact you through Brightwheel and send photos to you each morning and afternoon to fill you in on how things are going.

Suppose you are worried about how your child might adapt to their new environment. There’s no need to fret because Bright Beginnings Preschool offers a six-week adjustment period where parents can withdraw enrollment if their child cannot cope with the pressure of a new setting. To help ease your child’s worries, we suggest you show them our online photo gallery, so they can have expectations about what’s in store for them this school year.