Let’s face it: home-life on a school morning can be anything but peaceful. Between waking up, putting on clothes appropriate for the season, trying to give them a (somewhat) healthy breakfast and looking for that shoe, by the time you arrive at Georgetown Hill you may feel slightly frazzled. Hopefully you were able to grab a cup of coffee for yourself?
As you walk down the hall with your little one, tears, crying, and clinging only add to the stress of leaving your child at preschool. Children usually adapt quicker than you might expect, but the experience can certainly be difficult for parents and children in the beginning.
Georgetown Hill is a soft place to land after a stressful morning, and you can count on the fact that your child will receive plenty of hugs and cuddles throughout the day. But, if you or your child are really struggling, here are some ideas to ease the transition from home to school:
- Allow your child to bring something familiar from home such as a stuffed animal or a laminated picture of your family. When they are ready to fully engage in the class, they can put it in their cubby.
- Create a goodbye ritual. The ritual may include a certain number of kisses, a high-five, or a quick song. This predictability can ease the apprehension by giving both you and your child a plan to follow. Remember that even though it is hard to leave, lingering at the door tends to increase the anxiety for your child.
- Create a story to tell about the routine of your child’s day, and talk it through both at bedtime and on your way to school. For example, “We are going to go to use the bathroom and wash your hands together, and then we are going to say our goodbyes. You are going to stay at school with your teachers for circle time, snack time, outside play time, lunch time and nap time. And then Daddy will pick you up and we will play outside in the yard.”
- Think about starting gradually in the beginning, if possible. Ease your child into his or her new world by giving them a shortened day during the first week or two.
- Create a checklist by your front door to be sure that you have remembered all of the essentials and to decrease the frantic feeling as you walk out of the house.
- Stay engaged with the communication between home and school. Our most preferred way of developing relationships with families is in-person at drop-off and pick-up. We also try to keep lines of communication open through the Life Cubby application, e-mails and calls home, newsletters, and family events. Remember that our doors are always open if you want to come talk to us or observe your child’s progress in school.
- Remember the gut feeling you had when you toured Georgetown Hill? Trust that feeling that your child is loved and part of our family. While there is no replacement for mom and dad, we really try to create a home-away-from-home at Georgetown Hill and provide an engaging and loving environment for each unique child in our care.
Oh, and one more thing. All of our campuses have a coffee station for families who did not have time for that cup of coffee before they left the house. So, grab a cup before you go about your day!