Your Child’s First Day
As the first day at the Little Kingdom Childcare draws closer, you and your child may experience a range of emotions about that day. You would be especially concerned about how well your child will settle-in after you have left. However, it is timely to remember that we have already met you and your child, and have learnt much about you already. Our Educators will use this knowledge to help your child through the settling in period to the time when your child will excitedly come into the room anticipating the day at the Centre.
Some children settle quickly, some take longer. However, ways you can help your child to settle include:
- Talk calmly and confidently to your child about what will occur in the Centre – new friends and exciting activities such as playing with different toys, painting, music and games. Be positive. If you are positive, your child is more likely to be positive as well.
- Take your child to the Centre for short visits before the actual starting date.
- Drive past the Centre on the weekends.
- Involve your child in choosing their bag and labeling it so that they can recognise it.
The first day
- Ensure that your child’s bag contains a water bottle, changes of clothing and, especially comfort items such as pacifiers and soft toys.
- Arrive with time to spare. Your child is more likely to settle readily if unhurried.
- Spend time with your child’s educators and ensure that you communicate any information needed to continue your child’s care routines.
- Bring your child in without siblings to make it easier for your child to settle. Of course, siblings are more than welcome once your child has settled.
- When it is time for you to leave, do so quickly. Whenever possible, settle your child into an activity, say goodbye and go. Even when a child understands that you will be coming back, the moment of parting can still be sad.
- Be certain to say goodbye. Use set phrases such as ‘I’m going now’ and ‘I will be back after rest time’. Smile. Children take their social cues from their parents. If a parent appears happy and confident in the Centre environment, the child will too. Saying goodbye develops a secure and trusting relationship between you and your child. Even if your child is distressed, leaving without a farewell breaks trust.
- Ring the Centre throughout the day to find out about how your child has settled.
- Read the written communication about your child’s day (e.g. food and drink, nappy change and sleep charts).
- Gather information from the Educators about the activities your child enjoyed and any new friends so you can talk about them with your child on the home.
- Ensure that you have collected your child’s bag and contents, especially any comfort items.
In no time at all, your child will happily anticipate the day at Little Kingdom Childcare with friends and Educators – just as we do.