Helping you and your child adjust to daycare
Because getting your children ready to start on their first solo journey in life is a
milestone event for both parents and toddlers, you’ll need to lay a foundation that will
help them make the transition to daycare as happy and smooth as possible. It’s a big
change in your life as well, so here’s a few useful tips to help Mom and Dad adjust to the
For the Kids
It’s important to get them used to the new adventure they’ll be embarking on gradually.
Talking to them about what to expect in advance and reading to them from children’s
books that touch on the issues helps. Begin a few months before they start daycare by
telling them about where people go during the day and why they need to leave their
homes for only a short period of time. Tell them about how they will be going to daycare
in the near future and let them know about the types of things they will be seeing and
Visiting the child care center they will attend in increments is another good idea that
will help your little one build up some ideas about what they can expect. A few weeks or
months beforehand is usually a good timeframe and you’ll want to start with half hour
visits with one parent staying with them. When you feel the time is right, a half hour solo
visit can come next. These can increase over time before the full day visits commence.
You can also let your toddlers bring an object from home to help make the transition
easier. When the time comes for you to leave, they’ll feel better with a favorite plush toy
or picture that reminds them of home and they can keep that reminder with them all day
as a source of comfort and security.
For the Parents
It’s a big adjustment for you too and whether Dad or Mom is leaving their child behind
for the first time, there are a few little tricks to help you get over your separation anxiety
as quickly as possible.
First off, you need to walk away on that first big day and not look back No sneaking back
to see how they’re doing and no big fanfare just before they begin their new adventure. If
you really need to, a quick call to the daycare works, but only after you’re back at the car.
Remember, your toddler might not make as big as fuss as you’d like when you pick them
up and that’s to be expected. At that age, children have issues making a smooth transition
between places and activities so you might even be on the receiving end of a tantrum
when you pick her up.
If they aren’t chatterboxes as soon as they get in the car, getting them to open up at home
is best done by asking about what a playmate did at various points in the day. While you
should ask for specifics about the best and worst things that happened in the day, you
need to respect the fact you toddler is starting on the path to forging their own identity
without you for the first time and might need a little privacy.
How did you and your children adjust to daycare? Share it with us.
Read more info like this at All My Children.
Author: Rob Starr