Making Your First Day of Child Care and Preschool Easier
Whether they’re 6 weeks old or 4 years old, dropping your child off for their first day of child care or preschool can be emotional for both you and your child. Below are a few tips to make your first day at Day Early Learning a little easier.
Before Your First Day:
- Schedule a visit to the center with your child and introduce them to their teachers and new classroom. Give yourself time to get acquainted with their teachers as well and ask any questions you may have.
- Start your new routine early. Give your child (and yourself) several days to adjust to a new bedtime and/or wake time and morning routine.
- For breastfed babies, be sure to introduce a bottle a few weeks in advance.
- For older children, start talking to them about school and what to expect. Read books about starting school to encourage more conversations about how they’re feeling about starting school.
- Consider getting older children a new backpack to get them excited for their first day.
On Your First Day:
- Allow for extra time at drop off. Feel free to spend some time in the classroom with your child. Help them settle in and introduce them to their new surroundings. This is a great time to establish a drop off routine — check them in, put their things in their cubby, wash hands and get them settled into an activity.
- For infants, spend time talking to their teacher about how their evening and morning went and discussing your child’s needs.
- Bring in family photos to display in their classroom.
- Keep goodbyes short and sweet. Validate your child’s feelings and reassure them you’ll be back. Sneaking away without saying goodbye can make it harder for your child once they realize you’re gone, so be sure to say goodbye. When you are ready to leave one of your child’s teachers can give them extra attention, cuddles or involve them in an activity to make the transition as smooth as possible.
- Teachers will send updates via LifeCubby on how your child’s day is going.
After the first day:
- Spend a few moments at pick up checking in with you’re child’s teacher about their day. If you have an older child, ask them to show you something they made or enjoyed playing with today.
- Your child will probably be more tired than usual. First days can be exhausting! Give them some grace during their first week as they transition to their new routine.
- Allow for extra bonding time with your child, especially if it’s your child’s first time being away from you for an extended time.
If you have any questions or concerns, talk to us! We’re here to support you and your child and we want to ensure your transition to Day Early Learning is a positive one.