As a parent you are constantly helping to prepare your child for the next stage of their life, and though it may have looked like child’s play, your little one has been leaning new tools and tolerances since the day were born. With pre-school looming, it may be time to broaden the sphere of influence and let pre-school or nursery staff help you equip your little learner with the skills to get them off to the best start at school.
The rate at which your child settles into nursery or pre-school may, in part, depend on how much time they have spent with other children. If the answer is not much, then sharing and co-operative play may take a while to grasp. But hey, that is precisely what these environments are for and experienced staff will know just how to make transitions as smooth as possible.
In the run up to the big first day you could try upping the number of play dates so your child gets more acquainted to group dynamics and peer expectations.
Don’t be dismissive of your child’s anxiety. Be calm and reassuring and talk to them about what is likely to happen while they are there. Visiting beforehand and building positive associations can really help reduce the fear factor.
The first drop off can be tough for everyone, try to keep the tone upbeat and use goodbye rituals that you use at home – to reinforce that you will be back later just like always. Resist the urge to give lingering squeezy hugs as an intense exit scene on your part is unlikely to do any good! Sob into your cappuccino round the corner by all means, but do remember that your little one is likely to be driving you bonkers again within a couple of hours of collection!