We Asked, You Answered: 8 Tips for First-time Kindergarten Parents
We love when our EverydayFamily moms and dads share their experiences and tips with one another in our community; because when it comes to parenthood, it's a much easier and more enjoyable journey when shared with those who understand. So we've decided to take that one step further and share some of those nuggets of wisdom here on the blogs. Our hope is to take some of your best advice, words of encouragement centered around a focused topic that we see trending in our community, here on the site or on Facebook, and compile them into a post for you and your fellow EverydayFamily friends to read.
We're hoping it can be the next best thing to chatting over coffee with friends in person! We know that nothing can replace real life interactions, but we do have aspirations to be a source of support – and this is one way we hope to bring that to you. The words you will find will likely leave you with something new gained; or just a knowing that you're not alone because they come from other parents in thick of it, right along with you.
At the end of July, we had the start of the school year on the brain, and we thought about all of those first-time Kindergarten moms who were about to embark on their journey of letting their little ones go for their first big day in Elementary School. It's kind of a big deal, no? So we posted this question to our Facebook community:
And you all were fantastic and shared some lovely tips and words of encouragement. Below, you'll find eight that we think might resonate and help you as these first days of school roll out over the next month or so across the nation. We know some of you have had your first day already, and some still have until after the Labor Day holiday. We hope that regardless, these words from those who came before you will help just a bit as you see your babies off to their first days in Kindergarten.
1. Deep breaths, because it's going to be emotional. ~ Celeste W.
2. With my daughter I started preparing her way before she ever went to school. I would act excited and tell her I couldn't wait for her to go to school. It just kinda rubbed off on her she never had one problem with going to school in fact it hurt my feelings more than hers! She still loves school to this day she is now in second grade. ~ Jamie B.
3. Have your child push you out the door. That way they are making you leave, you aren't leaving them. I always did this with my students and it works great for the kids… ~Cheryl H.
Bawled. My. Eyes. Out. No shame in that game! I love my kids and they were in all-day K so it was a long time! and thy are twins so 2 at once!! We read The Kissing Hand, Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten, and others to get us all ready.
After drop off my girlfriends and my family (so blessed with a killer support system) and I went out to bfast together! We call it “boo-hoo breakfast” and do it every year!! ~Molly S.
4. The best way to leaving your kindergartner at his or hers class room when they have separation anxiety is to make the good bye quick as possible and before that have a teacher or and aid be there right when you give the kiss and hug and bolt. The longer you stay there the more they have problems letting go. At home make them a goodie bag with all their favs. In the car ride to school tell them they will have a surprise at home or when you come get them at the end of the day. Remind them as you approach the class and then make the goodbye as short as possible. ~ Raquel B.
5. I attach our names, contact info, and address on the inside of my kids book bags. That way if there is a substitute bus driver or any emergency situation where they will need it, then it is there. I also explain to my kids it is there in their book bag and to show it to the bus driver if such situation arises. My kids have had to use it several times and I have had several bus drivers tell me how much they appreciate it. ~ Melissa H.
Even though you will want to linger, don't. Give hugs and kisses and tell them to have fun, then leave. The longer you stay the harder it will be for them to watch you go. ~ Chrissy E.
6. Bawled. My. Eyes. Out. No shame in that game! I love my kids and they were in all-day K so it was a long time! and thy are twins so 2 at once!! We read The Kissing Hand, Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten, and others to get us all ready.
After drop off my girlfriends and my family (so blessed with a killer support system) and I went out to bfast together! We call it “boo hoo breakfast” and do it every year!!
7. Go to the playground at the school for fun play so they get some familiarity with the school. ~ Christina F.
8. Be positive and upbeat about leaving you and starting school! Talk about how much fun they will have, friends they will make etc. Check out books from the library about fun kindergarten stories. Don't put your fears on your child, that is not helpful to them or their teacher. Make sure you go to “Meet the teacher night” to get familiar with the teacher and classroom. Our schools always send home “All about me” sheets to fill out, if they don't, make your own. Send your teacher an info. Sheet about your little one. Fill them on your kids favorite things, personality and their fears, their eating, napping and pottying habits and their preferred name. Good luck new mommys! Your kids will have a great time and remember wait until you are out of their site before you cry;) ~ Amanda T.
What advice would you add to this list? Do you have a question you'd like us to ask our community in the future for our new “We Asked, You Answered?” series?