Working Mum: How to Find Child Care

« Back to Home

How to Prepare Your Child for Their First Day at Kindergarten

Posted on

Going to kindergarten is a big step for your child and could also be pretty nerve-wracking for you. If it's the first time your child will be away from you, you might be wondering how you can make the transition as smooth as possible. By clearly explaining what's going to happen at kindergarten, showing your child pictures of where they'll be going, practicing activities together, and letting your child ask as many questions as they want, you'll be off to a great start. Read on for details on how to make sure your child's first day is filled with fun and excitement, not tears.

Show them pictures

Showing your child pictures of the kindergarten they'll be attending will help them picture themselves there and make it feel much less scary and unknown. Most kindergartens will have plenty of pictures on their website. If not, ask if you could be given a few to show your child. Talk them through the pictures slowly, explaining what you're looking at, and what they'll be doing there. For example, you could say, "This is the cloakroom, where you'll hang your coat up in the morning," or, "This is the playground - are you looking forward to going on the slide?" Asking questions helps your child to feel involved, and also allows them to bring up any concerns they might have.

Practice activities together

For many children, kindergarten involves a lot of new activities. Even simple things, like having to take their own shoes on and off, might be challenging for children and are worth practicing together. You could plan a 'kindergarten day' at home, where you'll take your child through all the activities they'll be likely to carry out at kindergarten. Let them practice hanging up their coat in the morning, sitting quietly for story time, eating lunch out of a tray, and playing with new toys and puzzles. You could team up with a few other parents whose children are at a similar age, and are also about to start kindergarten. This allows all the children to practice sharing and playing nicely together.

Let them ask questions

It can be almost impossible to predict your child's concerns, no matter how well you know them. It's essential to let your little one ask as many questions as they like. You should listen carefully, without dismissing anything as silly. Offer gentle reassurance to your child, no matter what they're worried about. For example, if they think you won't be there to pick them up on time, let them know that you'll always try your best to be there on time, and that their teacher will stay with them if you're ever late.