The day your child goes to preschool for the very first time will be quite exciting. However, know that it’s normal for your child to experience separation anxiety. Experts say that by the time a child reaches the age of 3, he typically knows his parent who will be impacted by his pleas not to leave yet.
Consistency is Key
When you drop your child off at a preschool or center for child care near Liberty Hill, TX, establish a drop-off routine, where you offer him your full attention without drawing out the process. However, remember when your ritual goes on too long, this only offers more opportunity and time for the anxiety to swell. Ensure that your child knows you will return. You can inform him in a language that he can understand like after he has eaten his afternoon snack.
Your Mood Influences your Child’s
You need to remain calm as your child is expected to pick up on your mood. Do not lead questions which suggest to him that he must be anxious. One example is asking him if he is worried about being away from you tomorrow. You need to be sure to be on time to pick him up. Also, understand that separation anxiety can take various forms. Although a child may act nervous if it is time for his parent to leave, others might throw a tantrum about something unrelated or argue about getting dressed in the morning.
Other Helpful Tips
- Avoid sneaking out of the classroom. Consider how your child will react when he realizes you are suddenly around and what his teacher will need to contend with.
- Expect regression in his progress. There is a possibility that during the first week, your child will do great while his classmates struggle with the transition. However, your child could experience separation anxiety in the second week.
- Do not make promises that you cannot keep. Making false promises can only address the situation temporarily. Expect this to be counterproductive in the big picture.
- Ensure stability of other routines. For instance, try to avoid changing dinner time or bedtime routines at this time.
- Remind him how great he is at getting used to new things and places. When your child used to be afraid of the zoo; however, currently loves to go there, cite this as an example.
- Be creative. You can do something to reassure your child. For instance, Hilltop Children’s Center suggests taping a laminated family picture on the bottom of your child’s plastic crayon box. You can add “I Love You” at the bottom. Every time he is coloring, he can feel a family connection as he sees the bottom of the box.