Easing your child's transition to kindergarten
Adjusting to new teachers, routines, peers and a new environment can be overwhelming for children that are making the move from preschool to kindergarten. The United Way Center for Excellence in Early Education offers some suggestions for easing your child's transition to school.
Get your child excited during the weeks leading up to kindergarten:
- Talk to your child about the positive changes that he/she will experience.
- If there are older siblings in the household, encourage them to share some of their positive kindergarten experiences.
- Before the school year begins, call the school and make arrangements to let your child meet the new teacher and become familiar with the surroundings.
- If possible, find out if any of your child’s preschool classmates will be attending the same school and let your child know that some of his/her friends will be sharing their new classroom.
Help your child manage the transition:
- Let your child decide what he/she wants to wear to school. Don’t overwhelm them with choices. Pick out three outfits and let them choose from those.
- Let your excitement show. Reiterate how proud everyone is that they are starting kindergarten.
- After entering the classroom, help your child put his/her belongings away and reassure them that you will be back to pick them up when school is over.
- Find the teacher that your child met previously and reacquaint them. After giving your child a big hug, release them to the teacher.
- Avoid lingering around the classroom.