If your child has the all-important occasion of their first day in a day care centre coming up soon, you're probably a bit worried and nervous. The first order of business is to stop worrying and stay calm -- your child's behaviour is modelled on yours, after all! The next thing to do is to put some of the following tips into practise. Here are your top tips for inciting day care centre delight instead of day care centre despair.
Talk it Up
In the weeks leading up to your child's first day in the day care centre, start talking about it regularly. With a positive and thoroughly upbeat attitude, frequently start discussions with "When you get to go to the day care centre..." and talk about friends, fun activities, or learning that your child enjoys. Ask your child which day care centre activities that they're looking forward to the most, and regularly remind them of how much they're looking forward to all that fun. They're likely to start viewing day care as something to be truly excited about.
Choose a Favourite Object
Check with the day care centre to be sure they allow comfort objects. If so, tell your child that they can choose one thing to take with them on their first day in the day care centre. You can gently guide their choice by suggesting something that always calms and soothes them -- for example, their favourite blanket. You can even tell your child that they can take along something special belonging to you, for example a scarf scented with your perfume, if that's what they derive the most comfort from.
Prepare For the Tears
Many children cry when they're left at the day care centre for the first time -- it's quite normal, and it's important to prepare yourself for it. If the flood of tears appears whilst you're leaving, it's very important that you don't respond with tears of your own -- or by taking your child back home. Remind your child that you'll be back at the end of the day, and that the day will pass by before they know it. It's hard to remain firm in this situation, but if you steel yourself for it and expect it, you'll find it much easier to wave good-bye. When you pick your child up at the end of the day, you can ask the day care centre teachers how long the tears lasted -- it's quite likely that your child was cheery again once you were out of sight, and knowing this will make you feel better.
The first day at day care can be a challenge for many children, but by using the tips above you can turn that challenge into cheer!Share