Starting preschool can be scary: both for your child and for you. Parents are often consumed with feelings of guilt for leaving their children at school for the first time, especially if the child is showing signs of separation anxiety. To make the process easier, it?s important to know how to find a preschool that will be right for your child, the benefits of preschool, and how to make the transition to preschool easier on your child.
Benefits of Preschool
- Prepares your child for kindergarten
- Provides opportunities for growth and decision-making
- Promotes social development
- Development of language and cognitive skills
- Provides a structured, yet nurturing environment
Tips for Making the Transition to Preschool Easier
- When dropping your child off on the first day, do not trick or lie to your child. If you sneak out of the room or lie and say you?ll be waiting in the hallway, they?re going to be even more distressed when they find out you lied to them.
- Try preparing them ahead of time. Introduce them to their new schedule a week or two before preschool starts so they won?t be confused when their routine suddenly changes. Consider introducing your child to their new teacher before the first day so they?ll feel more comfortable with them when it comes time for you to drop them off.
- Let your child take a small object with a lot of meaning to school with them. Consider making it a morning ritual of filling the object with love before putting it in their backpack.
- Make a fun goodbye ritual. Whether you do high-fives, eskimo kisses, or a secret handshake, give your child something that?s special just between you two to look forward to in the morning.
- Help them get excited! Allow them to pick out their backpack and lunch box and maybe even some new shoes or clothes to wear on their first day.
- Let them know it?s okay to be nervous. They might not want to go at all, or have a great first day then not want to go back. It?s completely normal and make sure to let them know it?s okay to be scared.
Finding a Preschool
There are many factors to consider when thinking about how to find a preschool that will be right for your child. Make sure you do your research, and visit and interview multiple places before making a decision. Talk to friends and family members to see where their children when to preschool. It?s important to do your research on how to find a preschool because choosing the best preschool for your child is crucial. You know your child better than anyone else, so pick one that you think will best allow them to learn and grow. Additionally, consider letting your child be involved in the process of finding a preschool. It will make it less scary and might even get them excited for school.