Hey everyone, I just wanted to share some quick back to school tips for preschoolers. Starting preschool can be scary for many of our little ones, especially if it's a new school. These are a few of my getting ready for preschool tips , that I am currently sharing with my new enrolling families. I hope it helps to make your preparation for the new upcoming school year a little smoother.
1) Read books about preschool leading up to the first day of school
There are many books about going to preschool available from the public library or online. Choose several to share with your child before school starts. Talk about the story and how the characters are feeling, then ask your child how they are feeling about attending school. Go over their daily schedule and let them know what they can expect (for example wearing a mask). The more familiar they are with what to expect, the more comfortable they will feel. It is normal for them to feel anxious. Provide reassurance and lots of encouragement.
2) Start a night time routine if you haven't done so already, and ensure that your child gets an adequate amount of rest. Let them help with picking out their clothes and getting their bag ready the night before (don't forget to pack and label all needed personal items, such as a change of clothes and cloth masks). This will help to empower them by letting them have a choice, and can help cut down on the morning rush.
3) Visit your child's preschool, and make sure they meet their teacher. A number of programs are setting up virtual tours, and zoom sessions with teachers. Try to participate if possible in whatever your school is offering. The more exposure to the teacher and classroom, before your child's start date, the better. For families doing in-person tours, please ensure that you wear a mask, social distance from the teacher, and clean your hands prior to entering the programs.
4) Discuss any concerns you have with your provider, before your child's start date if possible. Most programs are currently adopting the guidelines established by their licensing agencies VDSS, and state governing departments such as VDHHS. Things are ever changing, and there is a great deal of uncertainty right now. Try to be as informed as possible, and make sure you are comfortable with the programs policies and procedures. For the most up-to-date information and guidance from the department of socail services,tvisit https://www.dss.virginia.gov/cc/covid-19.html. Check with your school for their most up-to-date policies and procedures!
5) Model positive optimistic behavior, take lots of pictures, and enjoy spending time with your child. Children grow up so fast, and the preschool years fly by. You will definitely miss them when they are gone, so try to savor every moment of your child's childhood. At preschool, we are doing our ultimate best to provide children with as much of a sense of normalcy as possible. Speaking positively to your child about them attending preschool, meeting new friends, and learning new things will help your child tremendously. No one has all the answers, or knows what the future holds; however, if we can model a positive attitude, our preschoolers will follow and feel more secure.