Whether it’s day care, nursery, kindergarten, or middle school… starting school can be harder on parents than on their children.
For the youngest children just starting school, there are some things you can do at home to ensure that your child’s first few days at school are successful:
- bed time. Make sure your little one is getting the sleep they need (10-13 hours for 3- and 4-year old children). A tired kid is an anxious kid.
- ease their fears. Your child will look to you for guidance. If you are worried, they will be too. Ease their fears by putting on a happy face while you talk about how fun school is.
- send love. The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn is a beautiful book with a great message. Reading books like will help you show your child you are not deserting them. Likewise, establishing a small personal ritual before going off to school will be something your child can access when you are not around.
If you need some additional advice, Parent’s Magazine has a great article about separation anxiety.
For those who are a bit reluctant about sending your preschooler to school, just remember, you are doing the right thing. Take a deep breath, grab yourself a cup of tea, and read this mom’s reflection on why kids need preschool!