Adjusting to school and separation anxiety is not easy for children. It’s a gradual process and not something that can be mastered overnight. This is where the guidance of parents comes in. As parents, you may also feel conflicting emotions as your little one approaches a major milestone in life. You’re probably excited about the experiences your child will have. However, it may also feel a bit sad that they will start a new journey without you.
How to prepare your toddler for preschool?
But with proper guidance, this transition can definitely become easier. Take a look at these tips on how to prepare a toddler for preschool.
Explore the idea of preschool using pretend play
Make the idea of preschool exciting for your toddler by using pretend play. Act out common school-day routines, such as getting ready for school, kissing mommy and daddy goodbye, reading stories, singing songs, playing educational activities and more! Also take turns in playing the roles of the teacher, student and parent. Use this strategy to make your child feel that a preschool is a place where they can have fun while learning.
Practice self-help skills
Practicing self-help skills can be made more fun by making a game out of it. For example, you can race with your child when it comes to wearing their socks, lacing up their shoes, putting on their backpacks and so on. Then give them some sort of a prize when they win the game. Also, allow them to learn how to open their lunch box and unwrap their food by bringing them to the park for a picnic. These things will teach them to be self-reliant when they have to do certain things on their own.
Establish a set schedule
Establishing a daily schedule can help ease your toddler’s transition to preschool. Children learn best when routines are followed. Established routines teach kids about the concepts of time, sequencing and order. They also mentally prepare your toddler for the activities for the rest of the day. At home, be sure to establish consistent schedules for activities like getting up for breakfast, fixing their bed, dressing up, playing, reading books, and so on. Doing this will lessen your toddler’s difficulty adjusting to school.
Bring your child to play at their new preschool
Before school starts, take the time to bring your child to the new preschool. Allow them to explore the setting and play on the playground. This approach will help increase their excitement for attending preschool. You may do it a few times before classes officially begin. Not only will it make them look forward to school, but it will also help them become comfortable in the new environment.
Make time for reading
Fostering your child’s love for reading is an excellent way to enhance their vocabulary. It also promotes creativity and awaken their inner creative innovator. Be sure to spend time reading with your toddler. Always have reading material handy at home.
Give them daily chores
Giving your child daily chores can help increase their sense of independence. Assign them simple tasks, such as fixing their bed, putting away their toys, feeding a pet, dressing themselves and so on. Be sure to give them encouragement and recognition for every task accomplished.
Develop fine motor skills
Parents don’t have to wait until their child is in preschool before they develop their fine motor skills. This one of the things you can do at home by having your toddler create fun crafts. You can also have them play with modeling clay to form letters and shapes. These small hand tasks are an excellent way to practice hand placement which will prepare them for school.
Attending preschool is a big step for every child. As parents, you have an important role to play to make the transition smooth for your little one. Let this list be your guide as your child takes the first step into a new, wonderful journey. If you’re looking for the best preschool to enroll your child in, please visit Cornerstone Learning Center.