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The Hood Magazine

Getting Your Child Ready for Preschool

Mar 31, 2022 ● By Sanford Children’s Parenting Services
By: Sanford Children’s Parenting Services 

Preschool is an exciting new experience for both you and your child. However, it can cause some hesitation and questions. 

Preparing your preschooler 

Begin reading books about school a couple months before it begins. Talk about the story and encourage your child to ask questions. 

Play school by taking turns being the teacher and the student. Act out scenarios by role-playing. This gives your child an idea of what to expect. 

Familiarize your child 

Visit the classroom before school starts to ease the fears of unfamiliar territory. 

Meet the teacher and be sure to ask questions. 

Let your child know it is OK to be nervous. This is a good chance for you to gauge how your child adapts to new situations, people, and places. 

Preschool countdown 

Have your child pick out his or her own backpack for school.  This will give your child a sense of control and excitement that school is starting soon. 

Put your child’s name on his or her backpack, lunch box, blanket, jacket, shoes, etc. 

Let your child choose an outfit to wear on the first day. It is a good idea to do this the night before so you are not in a hurry in the morning. 

Be in bed at a certain time and get enough sleep to be ready for “school.” 

Wake up early and eat a good breakfast. 

What to expect 

Separation anxiety. The truth is that separation anxiety can come in stages depending on your child’s temperament. Taking your child from a familiar place and dropping him or her off in unfamiliar place can raise an anxious and overwhelming feeling. 

Use a “goodbye routine.” It could be a “secret handshake” or wave goodbye out the window as you leave. Avoid sticking around too long as your child will begin to expect your presence for a certain time each morning. 

Preschool provides your child with exposure to new learning opportunities and independence as well as peer interactions. If your child is used to being home with you or at a home day care, this gives your child a chance to gain his or her independence, be around his or her peers and build social skills. 

Preschool can be a frightening time but also a very exciting time for both you and your child. Children love to learn, and preschool is the perfect place for that.