Starting nursery is a big step for both parents and child. For a few (like myself) it will be the first time they have properly been away from their child.
Parents can play an essential role in preparing their little ones for this new transition. It can be a daunting time for parents and child alike, however, rest assured that when this time comes, it is perfectly normal to worry. I am going to share with you a few things that I did which I found useful when my daughter started nursery. I hope this can help you both look forward to the big day!
Numero Uno: Encourage Independence
When your child starts nursery they will be encouraged to build their independence. There is nothing wrong with giving these skills a kick start and practicing a few at home. For example, let your child put on their shoes and socks at home when leaving the house. If your child will be staying at nursery for meal times encourage them to use their utensils. This will give them a good start for nursery mealtimes.
2) Talk About Nursery
I 100% believe that speaking about starting nursery and what is going to happen helped with Mia going to nursery. By letting her know what was to come, and explaining that mummy won’t be there, helped it to not be such a big shock. Talk to your child about all the fun activities they are going to be doing. Pick up a few story books that talk about going to nursery. This is a great way to help reassure your child what nursery is all about.
3) Say Goodbye Try Not To Linger
The part we all worry about the most is saying goodbye whilst your child is in floods of tears. I have worked in a nursery and I have a child that attends nursery, so I can speak from both sides here. It is never easy to leave them, but from my experience the longer you linger the harder it will be. Try your best not to draw out this process, if your child is upset reassure them that you will be back give them a kiss, then try scoot out.
4) Regular Sessions
If this is possible, book your child in for more then one session per week. This will help speed up the process of the settling in session. More than one session will help little ones adjust to the new routine and help familiarise themselves with this new setting.
5) Practice Simple Tasks
At nursery children are sometimes expected to carry out simple task such as tidying up. Set some of these at home and practice them to help build their independence and confidence.
6) Be Aware Of Separation Anxiety
During the first few weeks it is perfectly normal for your child to cry on drop off. Prepare yourself for some tears but try your best to stay positive so that your child does not pick up on any of your anxious feelings. Reassure your child you will be back to pick them up, and talk about the day ahead they are going to have.
TIPS FOR MUM:
As hard as this transition may be, if you find yourself feeling anxious try and remember all the benefits nursery has. It will get easier and your child will be settled before you know it. Nursery staff are always their to help you, your child is in safe hands!
How did you prepare for your child starting nursery? Did the transition go smoothly? Or did you have a lot of obstacles in the way? Let us know in the comments below.