The first day of school is both exciting and somewhat stressful for both children and parents. While some parents manage and get well organized, others find it quite challenging. In order to avoid the stress, it is essential to get well prepared and have a fail-proof strategy. These first day of school tips will help you get organized and plan well.
First day of school tips for children
If you are a proud parent of a kindergartener, chances are you want to prepare your child for the first school day properly. As this day can be kind of scary for kindergarteners, it’s always good to help them cope with the excitement they are about to experience. The best way to do that is by following these five tips:
1. Take the time to explain to your kindergartener what is to be expected
In order to help your child deal with the anxiety that comes with the first day of school, it’s crucial to talk to them. Take enough time to carefully explain what is going to happen on this day and talk about meeting new teachers and making new friends.
Make sure you allow your kindergartener to ask questions and be ready to come up with good answers in a positive manner. During this conversation, try to notice if your child is experiencing any insecurities and let them express their fears. Then, follow up with encouraging statements. If they don’t get involved in the conversation, ask them how they feel about their first day of school. However, it is important to avoid using words like “anxious” and “nervous”.
2. Talk to your kindergartener about the new morning routine
Adapting to a new routine takes time, especially when it comes to kindergarteners. That’s why it is important to talk to them about the regular morning activities they will take part in. Explain each activity, but don’t forget to give them enough time to remember every step. Be supportive and remind them about the next step they should take, whether it is getting dressed or combing their hair.
3. Be patient
Being a parent of a kindergartener is beautiful, yet stressful, especially in times when your youngster is experiencing huge transitions, such as going to school. As the first school day may make them nervous, one of the best things you can do to turn things around is to be patient.
Children may struggle to adapt to the new social environment, hence they need your support. They will have many new tasks to complete and goals to accomplish, so they will need you to listen and answer their questions. If you manage to explain the unknown, and do this with a lot of patience, your kindergartener can overcome anxiety quickly and start enjoying school.
4. Encourage your kindergartener to make friends
There are numerous research findings proving the fact that parents play an important role in teaching and encouraging children to make friends. According to these findings, making friends depends on skills that can be practiced and developed, such as conversational, interpersonal, and emotional self-control skills.
The first thing a parent should do to prepare their kindergartener for the first day of school is teaching them how to introduce themselves properly. Make sure you tell your child to start by saying “Hi” or “Hello”, after which they should say their name. Then, encourage your child to continue talking by asking others about their names. If other children are playing a game, encourage your child to get included by doing something relevant to that game.
5. Share your own experience with your kindergartener
In order to help your kindergartener feel more relaxed about the first school day, it’s always good to share a few stories about your childhood. This will help them understand there is nothing to be afraid of or worried about. Try to share your experience about times when you did something that was difficult to do, but was worth it eventually. Tell your child how you met new friends and started enjoying your time at school, while learning a lot of awesome stuff.
First day of school tips for parents
The first school day can be quite challenging for parents, too. Even though most parents try to remain calm and act like everything is under control, they are usually anxious while taking their kindergartener to school. These are a few first day of school tips for parents that will help you get through this experience more easily.
1. Contact other parents
In order to lower the stress level, it is good to get organized in advance, but it’s even more important to contact a close friend. You can try to get in touch with parents who have already had that experience, and ask for useful advice. Also, it would be helpful to meet a friend who has a kindergartener of the same age as your child.
2. Go on a school tour
This is a great way of getting kindergarteners ready for the first day of school. As some schools host an opportunity for parents to go on a school tour, it is wise to use the opportunity and visit the building/s where your child will spend so much time. Even better, take your kindergartener with you, so they can get familiarized with the new environment before school starts.
3. Break the ice early – meet the teacher
Speaking of the first school day, this is probably one of the biggest challenges families face. Meeting the teacher before school starts is important for both kindergarteners and parents.
While kindergarteners may wonder if they will like their new teacher, parents may feel anxious about other more serious issues. Parents usually worry about the kind of approach the teacher might have, whether they are too strict and authoritative, or too friendly and overly compassionate.
In order to decrease the stress related to this matter, it’s always good to meet the teacher in advance. If that is not possible for any reason, try to contact the teacher by phone or email. This will give you and your child time to get to know the person who’s going to teach your kindergartener for the next semester.