Is Your Child Starting Kindergarten? Read these Tips!
- Parents Only
By: Phoebe Ackland & Lisa Wolff, ellaslist
At ellaslist we know how daunting it can be for mums having to wave goodbye to their kids as they enter the ‘big school’ gates for the first time. But as hard as it is for mums, for the child, it can be an extremely scary process.
Here are a few helpful tips on how to make your child’s transition into Year K the smoothest possible and get them off to a great start.
1. Get Excited
Talk to your child about starting school and get them excited about the prospect. Chat about what they will be doing and the new friends they will be making. The more you talk about going to school, the more comfortable they will feel at the prospect.
2. Morning Calm
The morning routine of alarm clocks screaming and so many things to be done can be stressful to mums, and daunting for a child not used to this daily ritual of preparation. Make the morning before starting school calm and peaceful. Prepare as much as you can the night before – lay out uniforms, pack school bags, make lunchboxes.
Try not to rush your child (we know it’s tempting) and talk them through what’s going to happen and make it sound exciting. A nice idea could be planning a special pancake breakfast in the morning, so that waking up isn’t dreaded by your child, but something they are excited for.
3. Lunch Boxes
Some kids will be taking lunch boxes to school for the very first time. So make things easier for them and pack items that can be eaten quickly and that kids can open by themselves. We love the bento-style lunchboxes which provide such tempting variety for the kids. Check out our brilliant lunchbox hints and tips to give you inspiration for this daily task.
4. All the Gear
Starting school will mean forking out the dough for uniforms, shoes, bags, books, stationary, lunch boxes, and so much more. So make sure you label everything. Things are bound to go missing, and this will help the confusion and chaos of that first week until they are more settled. It’s a good idea to buy multiple uniforms (second hand if necessary) for when the others are being washed.
5. Go Through the Basics
Some kids may never have gone to the bathroom by themselves and once they are in school they need to get used to using the bathroom independently. Go through the basics like flushing and washing your hands so they are prepared.
6. The Tearful Goodbye
Although you might cuddle them at the front gate and never want to let go, the key to the morning drop-off is keeping it as quick as possible. Drawing it out will only make their nerves grow, and increase the likelihood of a meltdown or tantrum brought on by stress. A cuddle and happy, smiley goodbye will suffice. Just make sure you have tissues ready for when your child is out of sight. Remember, it’s completely normal to be emotional but try not to let your child see you cry as they may pick up on this anxiety.
Your child may still be used to having a midday nap and they won’t be able to do this at Kindergarten. So prepare for a very tired child at the end of the school day. Your kids may take a few weeks to adapt. To make it easier for them, enforce an early bed-time.
8. Put Afternoon Activities on Hold
Expect that your child may be grumpy and tired after school so put after-school activities on hold until they adjust. It’s just not enjoyable for anyone dragging a moaning child to a class they don’t want to do. Perhaps shift the class to a weekend or re-evaluate after a term or two.