The first day at Playschool
The first day at Playschool or Preschool marks a significant transition for both parents and children. For many, it’s the first time that you and your child will be away from each other for such extended period of time. Even though many kids will be excited about school, it is important to know and manage the experience to minimise apprehensions.
Here are some tips and suggestions to prepare and manage the first day at preschool
Before the first day
- Prepare your child for school by talking about the school and the new routine. Be as detailed as possible. Discuss the fun they will have at school with an aunty called teacher/Madam and lots of friends. That there would be nice toys, playing, singing and dancing
- Involve them in labelling their bag, tiffin, water bottle and other belongings. Make all the purchases special for the child
- Trust the teacher and the school staff to take care of your child. As a parent it is very important that you relax and not get stressed out about your child’s first day at school. If you are confident and calm, your child will be too. On the other hand, if you are anxious, that will rub off on your child.
The first day
- Give everyone plenty of time by waking up your child early. Hurrying up on the first day will make everyone stressed. Starting the day playfully will set a positive tone for the day. Make a special breakfast.
- Drop off your child at school few minutes early to allow for one-on-one time with teacher before you leave. Do not insist on staying longer with your child because they are crying. It is natural for your child to feel anxious in new environment. Teachers are experienced and will be able to manage their anxiety. Once you leave, do not visit again before pick up time. He/She may cry for a while, but this is an opportunity for your child to bond with the teacher
End of the first day
- Arrive on time for pick up. It’s important to pick up your child right on time at the end of the first day and make sure you are on time for pick up for the whole first week. It’s comforting for a child to know you will be there every day following a specific activity.
- Plan extra bonding time and validate feelings. Talk to your child and ask about their day. Despite your best efforts to make the day go smoothly, your child may still have some struggles with the new arrangement. Reassure him/her that it’s normal to feel a little scared but he/she is going to be okay.
- Be consistent. Do not keep the child at home if the child has cried on first few days. The child will use crying as a tool to get things done as per his or her wish. Also some children do not eat properly at school for first few days but settle down once they get familiar with the environment and school staff.
Some children wave to their parents and are as happy as can be on their first day and everyone is content. But then, in few days, may start to cry when you leave. This, too, is very common. The novelty of school has worn off, and your child realizes that he/she isn’t with you but stay consistent and if required communicate with the teacher. This too shall pass.
Wish you and your child a happy and memorable first day at school. Check out and download the printable “My first day at preschool” sign for a memorable picture from our facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/tigercubpreischool