How to Prepare Your Child for Daycare

Let’s face facts: the transition to daycare is rough on both parents and children. It’s hard to let go of your little one each morning—and they likely will not want to let go!

That said, this transition period will be over before you know it, and there are numerous ways to get your child ready for daycare. Pretty soon, having your kid in daycare will suddenly seem like the most normal thing in the world. Read on to find out our leading daycare preparation tips.

Talk it out

Even if your child hasn’t mastered speech yet, it’s important to talk with them ahead of time about what to expect. Think about it from the child’s perspective: they’re being dropped off at an unfamiliar location with people they barely know.

Start by reading a book to your child about what daycare is like. You can also watch TV shows that deal with this topic, like Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. This will provide them some idea of what to expect when they go to school.

Next, talk with them about when they’ll go to school and what to expect throughout the day. Any quality daycare will be able to offer parents a schedule which you can share with your child.

Pretend play

Now it’s time to get your child excited about going to school. Pretty much every kid is going to be excited about playing with new toys. You can also play pretend with them in a way that incorporates school activities, like naptime, lunchtime and playtime.

If your child is social, talk about the friends they’ll make at daycare as well. While you want to manage expectations—your child will likely be at least a little nervous about the experience no matter what—emphasizing the positive aspects of school is one of the best ways to get your child ready for daycare.

Go to the daycare

If possible, set up a meeting with the daycare facility ahead of your child’s first day. You’ll be able to show the child their classroom and have them meet their teacher. This way the child will be familiar with their surroundings and the people they’ll see. You can tell your child to turn to their teacher whenever they need anything.

Get those routines down

Every parent knows that children are creatures of routine. This rule is never more important than when a major transition—like going to daycare—is on the horizon. This starts with a morning routine, typically involving having breakfast, getting dressed and brushing teeth. And, of course, a bedtime routine is equally important. Doing this well ahead of the first day of school will help make the transition that much smoother.

Hopefully these daycare preparation tips will help your little one adapt to the world of school. For parents looking for a loving, supportive school community, Magical Star Preschool is here to serve you. We create a learning environment where children feel appreciated, safe and inspired. Whether you need pre-K, preschool or before/after school programs, we can help. Contact us right now to learn more about our programs.

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