Adequately preparing your toddler for preschool is a great way to make the transition a smooth one! And, even though they don’t need to know their numbers or ABCs before preschool, it’s a great idea (and fun for you both) to prepare them mentally and emotionally for the big first day of school. Not only does preschool create a routine for your child, but it also helps them adjust to a structured classroom environment, teaches them to play well in the sandbox with others and gets them ready for kindergarten.
Keep reading to find out how to prepare your toddler for their first day of preschool!
8 Ways To Prepare Your Toddler For Preschool
Get them ready to be away from their parents
Kids who are not used to daycare may find it beneficial to start slowly by going into the church nursery, staying with relatives, or getting accustomed to going somewhere without mom or dad. Separation anxiety can be real, and it’s always a good idea to ease them into being away from you.
Teach them to use a writing utensil
Whether they’re drawing, coloring or simply scribbling away, it’s a great exercise to have them to hold a pencil and work on something with their hands.
Read books about going to school
Toddlers love to read books. It’s great for their brain development and is also a fun way to get them excited about going to school.
Play “school” at home
Let your son or daughter be the teacher, and play school. The idea of crayons, papers, and classmates (played by stuffed animals, potentially) can be exciting for toddlers.
Make a routine chart
Get your toddler ready for preschool by making a visual chart to follow each morning. Make your bed, get dressed, brush your teeth, brush your hair, etc.
Visit the school together
Most preschools have a “meet the teacher” day. But if yours doesn’t or if you think your child needs more than one visit to get ready, take them to see the school.
Board games, made-up games, following direction games…these types of activities help toddlers to focus, think, and learn. It’s a fun way to prepare your little one for the classroom.
Make sensory bins
They’re just as much fun to make as they are to use. Make different bins that you take out only at supervised times where your toddler can play with different items, textures, and just explore.
Your toddler’s first day of school will likely be emotional—for the both of you! Take it day-by-day and remember that your feelings (and theirs) are perfectly normal. And, just think—you’re setting your child up to be a lifelong learner!
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