When you send your child to school for the first time it can be a very scary, emotional and downright terrifying experience. We have spoken before on the site about how you the parent can cope with your feelings once you have sent your child off to school, but what about actually preparing your child for this huge new chapter of their life. Their school days in many ways will shape the person that they will become. So it’s very important that you give them the best start possible by getting them ready. Here are a few tips to make your child’s first days of school a little easier for them.
Go & Visit The School Together
Now I have heard that some preschools or nurseries or whatever your area calls them do take the kids to see the school they are going to, but that was not the case where I lived. But I did ring the school and ask if I could bring my son in to have a little five minute look around and even get to say hello to some of the teachers. You do not have to be in there all day. We were literally in there ten minutes, just enough time for him to see what it looked like. This way it’s not as much of a shock to the system that first day. Just ring the school and tell them your kid is a little nervous and, I am sure, they will accommodate you. When my son saw how cool the school was, he could not wait to go!
Teach Them Some Basics
Now I am not saying your child should be writing fluently right away, not at all, and all kids develop at their own pace. But I would recommend that you make it a point in the summer holidays leading up to school. That you do read with them as much as possible, teach them the alphabet a little bit, counting and maybe even try to get them to write their own name. Nothing major, just give them a little indication of some of the things they will be learning once they go to school.
Get Them Involved In Their School Lunch
My son is one of the fussiest eaters in the world! So I knew there was no way at first he was going to be open to eating school meals. But the way I got around this was by taking him out and letting him pick a “cool” lunch box and then actually ask him what kind of things he would like in his lunch box. I would always make a point to make sure he had something that actually counts as dinner, but I would always let him pick a snack to put in there as well. Lunch time can be surprisingly scary for a child, so make sure that you make a point to talk about how fun it is to eat with the other kids.
Tell Them How Much Fun It Is
Now I am not saying at all that you need to sell school like its Disney Land, but do make it a point to say all the good things about it. New friends, play time and all the new and interesting things that they will get to learn. Always try your very best to make learning sound like it’s a great deal of fun.
Show An Interest In Their School Day
I had a thing where each day I would ask my son what new thing he learned today and he would get very excited telling me. Sometimes it would be something educational such as a new dinosaur or a new country he has learned about and then other times he would be excited to tell me something about one of his class mates, such as the time James ate a crayon. No matter what they tell you, try to then push the conversation into something like “wow I wonder what will happen tomorrow”, this keeps the excitement of school going.