I am sure by now all schools have started so this post may be a little late for this year, but I have learned a lot this summer and the last two months Buddy has been in school that I hope this helps next school year.
6 Tips to Prep Your Child for Kindgarten
Transitioning Buggy into Kindergarten was easy – by age 3, she was attending a religious education program one day a week for a few hours; at 4 we put her in preschool three days a week for a few hours per day; and at 5 she went to full day Kindergarten.
With Buddy? He wanted nothing to do with any of the above. So much so that he would have fall down, screaming crying fits about going to school.
Let me assure you, that he now attends full day Kindergarten, comes home and works on school work from the time he gets home until bedtime – willingly (we actually have to fight him to stop working on school work to go to bed).
1. Involve them in the process. We mentioned it to Buddy quite often. We would engage in discussions about him attending school and what it would be like. When it came time to register, he joined me in going to the school, talking to the office staff and enrolling.
2. Print out or purchase workbooks/worksheets. The dollar bins at Target or the dollar store are good places to find cheap workbooks or you can print out worksheets online for them to work on for fun at home over the summer.
3. Set a sleep schedule weeks prior to starting school. Hubby’s aunt actually gave us this idea and it worked great.
A couple weeks before the start of school, move bedtime up a half hour and wake up time earlier by a half hour. Every few days, move bedtime up a half hour and wake up time earlier by a half hour until you are track to go to bed at a normal hour and wake up for school.
With our kids, they were staying up until about 9pm and getting up roughly around 9am. So we started with bedtime at 8:30pm, wake up at 8:30am. After a few days, bedtime was 8pm and wake up was 8am. After a few more days, 7:30pm and wake up at 7:30am. A few more days and bedtime was at 7pm and wake up at 7am. We did have to adjust our wake up time one more time, but it helped adjust from summer to school.
4. Start a routine. Once we had our sleep schedule set, it was time to start the routine. Wake up, eat breakfast, teeth brushed, hair brushed, get dressed. Our afternoons were set up so that they would make their lunches before dinner, eat dinner as a family, shower, pajamas, set our the next day’s outfit and bedtime. It helped set up a structure for when school starts.
5. Attend open house and meet the teacher. Some parents don’t have time. I get that. But I found that attending open house, touring the school and meeting Buddy’s teacher and classmates really helped the transition. He got to see his classroom, where he would be sitting, who he was sitting with, and met his teacher. It eased his anxiety (and mine!)
6. Assurance. Assure the child that you will be coming back. Go over the drop off and pick up routine. We felt a lot of Buddy’s anxiety was because he felt that we would drop him off and not come back (clear separation anxiety which is normal for children). We assured him that we would be back to get him (we never left sister, did we?). We reviewed the routine.
Our routine consisted of dropping him off at his classroom and after school, his big sister would meet him at his door where we would be there to pick him up.
Lastly, while not a new tip to any parent, patience. Going to school after being home with mom and/or dad for the last 5 years is quite comforting and attending school is definitely a new experience that even makes me nervous (and I’m a 30 year old student!)
Buddy has been in Kindergarten now for two months and loves it! He loves his teachers, he loves his classmates, he loves waking up in the morning and getting ready! He makes his own lunch when he gets home from school because he is so excited to go back the next day!
This post was brought to you by Gymboree on behalf of their Grow with Me campaign.
If you’ve been following, you will know I have done a few Grow with Me Gymboree posts. Our last one was for Shark Week and while I didn’t measure him then, I did measure him at Easter for our Easter Egg Decoration Ideas.
In March when we did our first post, Buddy was 45 1/4 inches and he is now 46 1/2 inches! He’s grown a whole inch and a quarter in 6 1/2 months! Talk about growing like a weed!
How much have your little grown this year?