The first day of pre-k is a big day! Your “baby” is going to school. If your child is in childcare it might not seem as big of a deal but it is. Your child is the “big kid” now. All of the younger children look up to the big kids. If your child has never been to school it certainly is a huge day! As owners of a childcare learning center we want to share a few tips to make your child’s first day of Pre-K go great!
Attend your child’s Open House
We can’t say enough about coming to your child’s open house. This is a time to meet with your teacher and introduce your child. It’s a perfect time to mention anything special you think your teacher should know. Bringing your child lets them see what their class will look like. They can explore freely and get comfortable. These small experiences make their first day of school go so much smoother because they have been there before. It won’t be foreign. They also know their teacher is safe and not a stranger.
Arrive a few minutes early on the first day. This allows time for one last hug and one last kiss. Teachers like to begin their day on time. It’s ok if your child is crying. For some it’s a little more emotional than others. Your child will get used to their new routine. Your child’s teacher expects some children to need a little more TLC. We have done this many times. Trust us. Please know we have your contact information on file and will call if we need some help.
If your child has separation anxiety we have learned that telling your child “see you later” instead of “goodbye” helps. A simple change of words conveys a different message. Try that and see if it helps!
Some children just don’t want to let go. It can be scary going to the big school and Mom or Dad aren’t there. Develop a morning routine and stick with it. Children thrive on a schedule. They know what to expect. So at drop off keep it the same. One hug. One kiss. One high five. Whatever works for you followed with a “see ya later”.
Our school offers a morning carpool. This can help as well because they hop out of the car and walk in on their own under the supervision of our staff. This is just another way we get them ready for Kindergarten. Check and see if your school offers this.
We know you LOVE overalls. We do too. How could we leave out that adorable fluffy dress? Those clothes are precious but maybe not the best fit for the first day of Pre-K. Your child needs to be comfortable. The last thing they need is to be distracted by itchy clothes or buttons. The teachers hope your child can go to the restroom without assistance. They are growing up so fast. If they can go without asking for help with buttons, fasteners, holding up a dress, etc it makes them feel like the big kids they are! Please don’t fret. Our teachers will help if needed. We just want you to think about helping your child be as independent as possible.
We also suggest that you check your school’s parent handbook for dress codes. We recommend that all children wear closed toe shoes. This is for safety on the playground. We also recommend if girls wear dresses that they wear shorts under them.
We hope these tips make your child’s first day of Pre-K go well! Stay tuned for a few more tips to make the whole year go smoother!
Brandon and Jennifer