Monday, August 25, 2008

Theme of the Week: Back to School

It's that time of year again, Back to School. Whether you are an old pro at this, or first timer, all moms could use a few extra suggestions to make the transition easier for everyone. Here are a few school-related topics that might spark your thinking. Please share any insights you might have in these or other school areas.

Lunch Box Favorites
Making New Friends

Study Skills

Gotta Have Supplies
Easing Separation Anxiety

I'm going to take a closer look at that last one, Easing Separation Anxiety. I found some tips for both parents and teachers on the A Place of Our Own website that make the good-bye process a little smoother. I have revised them to be parent-specific and added a couple other thoughts as well.

1. Visit child care center together before starting program. Let your child see the toys and and other kids.
2. Talk to the child before drop-off. Explain and prepare them ahead of time--no surprises.
3. Comfort and validate your child's emotions, don't belittle or embarrass for feeling sad or scared.
4. Create a goodbye ritual. A hug and kiss or high five, anything that can be your special way of saying bye every time.
5. Say goodbye only ONE time. Don't keep dragging it out, and preventing the child from knowing for sure when you will leave.
6. If the school allows it, let your child bring a special personal item from home.

I also saw a creative way some teachers helped one little boy deal with the separation anxiety each day. In addition to giving comfort and love, the little boy's teacher would invite him to write a letter to his parents about how he felt. He could draw, or dictate words and then it was sealed up in an envelope, addressed to his mom and dad, and put in his backpack to take home. Once his feelings were recognized he felt ready to participate happily in the day's activities.

1 comment:

Erin said...

My son started kindergarten today. A mom of another kindergartener in our neighborhood invited all of the moms of k kids to get together at a park the day before school started so the kids could play and get to know each other before school started. This really helped my son feel better because he had friends going into the first day of school!