It can be daunting to even imagine leaving your child with someone else for an entire day! But starting daycare is a very important milestone for your child. Although it is heartbreaking, it is a very proud moment for you as a parent.
Visit with your child
Your child needs to get used to the daycare facility’s environment. In order to make them familiar with the place, try to visit with them. During your visit, make sure to talk to the staff as well. You can stay with them and play around in the park or the classrooms. If you think it is necessary, you can even visit the daycare multiple times before you think your toddler can start.
Try to introduce daycare in your child’s life and hype up the whole idea of going to the daycare. Involve them in plays and give them activities that would be needed in the daycare.
Your child might have to wake up early and go to daycare. If they have a habit of sleeping till late, it might affect their normal sleeping pattern. If you think that the timing is a problem, try to work it out and adjust to a newer routine prior to them joining the daycare.
One of the easiest ways to get your child excited about the daycare would be to buy them new supplies such as water bottles, bags, socks, and slippers. They will feel excited to show it around to their new friends and anyone who they can find interested.
Relationship with the caregiver
Your child is going to be under the care of some stuff that is initially a stranger to you and your child. It might be helpful if you build a good relationship with them before leaving your child in their care. Learning about them and letting them know about you could be beneficial for you both to get closer.
Communicate your child’s need
Your child is only around a year old when they are joining preschool. They haven’t properly developed their language skills. So, they won’t be able to communicate to the care provider about their likes and dislikes about anything. If they are uncomfortable with a certain task, they might not be able to say it well. Therefore, as the parent, you need to communicate your child’s needs and share their preferences.
Have a goodbye ritual that is short but sweet. Make your child feel that they are loved and give them the warmth they need but don’t dwell a lot during the goodbye. Your baby might realize that you are going to drop them off and start to cry. So, take the help of the care provider to distract your child and make it quick when you leave them at the school/daycare.
You don’t need to start full-time in the beginning
Remember that if it is difficult to leave them for the entire day, it doesn’t need to be an entire day at daycare. You can pick them up early. Once they start getting more comfortable going to the daycare, you can leave them there for the entire day.
Sometimes dropping your baby off along with a familiar toy or a blanket is helpful for them to hold when they are missing you or home. These comfort items will help your baby during any moments of anxiety.
It is understandable for either you or your baby to have some separation anxiety when first starting daycare. You will slowly get used to having them at the daycare.
- How to Prepare Your Child for Preschool: https://www.parents.com/toddlers-preschoolers/starting-preschool/preparing/how-to-prepare-your-child-for-preschool-0/
- How to prepare your child for preschool: https://www.unicef.org/parenting/child-care/how-prepare-your-child-preschool
- Preschool Prep: How to Prepare Your Toddler for Preschool: https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/78-preschool-prep-how-to-prepare-your-toddler-for-preschool