How To Help Your Child Adjust to Preschool

Collaborative post by another author. Preschools are important for kids because they allow them to be with their peers and learn the basics of social life, sharing, taking turns, following instructions, and good conduct. And as the name suggests, it prepares them for their first day of school while giving them a good foundation for reception and beyond. However, preschool sometimes stirs up uncomfortable emotions in kids. The new surroundings can be tough for them, and the lack of familiarity can breed anxiety in their little minds. So, if you’re preparing your child for preschool, here are some ways to help them adjust to the changes. 

a child playing with blocks, CC0 stock image from Pexels

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1. Help Your Child Develop Some Foundational Skills

To make the first preschool experience easier, help your child learn a few foundational skills. It could be as simple as reading to them and finding ways to sustain their attention while you read. If your child has any illnesses or disadvantages that affect their ability to concentrate, you can seek professional assistance before preschool. For instance, if you suspect your child has ADHD, which affects them in many ways including their attention, you can find professionals to help. A place like The ADHD Centre can help your child manage their condition to make adjusting to preschool life easier. 

2. Ease Your Child’s Fears

Take the time to communicate with your little one weeks or even months before preschool starts. Find fun ways to build excitement about preschool. Seeing you excited can give your child some measure of comfort. In the weeks leading up to the first day, try introducing your child to the activities they’ll go through in preschool. For example, you can get your child some crayons and colour books, so they get used to scribbling with paper at home. It will comfort them to see crayons and colour books when they get to preschool, as they’ve already grown used to them.  If they are having lunch there then practice using a lunch box for occasional lunches at home or picnics.

3. Visit The Classroom With Your Child

Unfamiliarity is a major cause of preschool anxiety in children. A good way to prevent this is to visit the classroom with your little one a few times before preschool starts. Contact the school to find a suitable time to let them walk around the room and experience the environment. Make sure they will get a chance to meet their teacher or keyworker. During this introduction, find out what activities your child can expect. Doing this will help you recreate these activities at home to prepare your child. 

4. Prepare Yourself

While the first preschool experience can be unsettling for children, it can also be unnerving for some parents for various reasons. Understandably, parting with your child, albeit temporarily, can take a while to get used to. It would help if you work hard to appear positive regardless of how you feel. That’s because children can pick up non-verbal cues of stress or sadness. And that can affect their mood and cause them to dread their first preschool experience. 

5. Give Your Child A Chance To Play With Other Children

Another great adjusting strategy is to encourage your child play with other children before preschool starts. Good ways to do this is by going to local playgrounds, play centres or soft plays. This allows you to observe how your child interacts with other children and you can teach them how to share or show kindness to others if required. 

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