Tips from NAEYC for starting Preschool
Here are some tips to help both you and your child make a smooth transition.
1. Visit your local library during a read-aloud time so your child gets used to hearing someone other than Mom, Dad, or Grandpa read aloud book in a group setting.
2. Establish a routine of "early to bed" and “school wake-up time” several weeks before school begins so your child has time to adjust to the new schedule.
3. Find out about the toileting procedures at the new school or center so you can review the situation with your child and make sure she is comfortable.
4. Arrange play dates with children who will be in your child’s class. Usually moms or dads go along on these early play dates. Ask the teacher or school for a list of children who will be in your child’s class.
5. If there’s a home visit or school visiting day, make sure you and your child participate. If you aren't able to participate, call the school to arrange for a visit to the school and to meet your child’s teacher.
6. Make a book at home about the new preschool experience your child is about to begin. Perhaps take photos of the school or of your child in front of school and add text like: “This is Sammy at school. This is her favorite t-shirt. This is Mommy picking up Sammy when school is over.”
7. Let your child pick out a new backpack and together write her name on it.
8. Tell stories about when you went to school and share how you felt about it. Find childhood pictures of yourself and other adults in your child’s life and talk about the photos.
9. If your child has never before been cared for by someone else, start to leave her for short periods of time with friends or relatives. Reinforce the fact that you will return and that she is safe with others.
10. Give your child a personal belonging of yours like a favorite scarf or bandanna so she knows you will come back to get it.
11. Read books about going to school and saying goodbye, such as
• The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn
• David Goes to School by David Shannon
• Will I Have a Friend? by Miriam Cohen
• First Day of School by Anne Rockwell
• When I Miss You by Cornelia Maude Spelman
• Take a Kiss to School by Angela McAllister
• It’s Time for Preschool by Esme Raj Codell
• A Pocketful of Kisses by Audrey Penn
12. Select a special object from home that your child can take to school--like a lunchbox, a book to share, and a small pillow for rest time.
13. Remember that separation is a process. Expect that your child (or yourself) will need time to feel comfortable with the new situation.
Grassroots TV show - City Matters, featuring Childcare Financial Aid for Families
Childcare is expensive, watch this show to find out more about possible help paying for childcare -
Building Adult Capabilities to Improve Child Outcomes
This 5-minute video depicts a theory of change from the Frontiers of Innovation community for achieving breakthrough outcomes for vulnerable children and families. It describes the need to focus on building the capabilities of caregivers and strengthening the communities that together form the environment of relationships essential to children's lifelong learning, health, and behavior.
Click here to watch our newest "Moms TV" video with Dr Bill MItchell, Charla Belinski, Dawn Ryan and Shirley Ritter talking about Screen Time for children - http://grassrootstv.org/Show.aspx?ShowID=11287
Emergency Preparedness Resources
Parents and early childhood programs have spend a great deal of time learning more about safety, emergencies, and security in our schools since the horrible shooting in Newtown Connecticut. Some of the best resources can be found at: www.iloveyouguys.org , a website put up by Ellen and John-Michael Keyes, parents of Emily who was shot and killed at Platte Canyon High School in Bailey CO. Talk to your childcare program about what they are doing, and check out the website for some great tools to make school safer.
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Resources for families to learn more about supporting your child's social and emotional development. Here are two national websites that have a wealth of information and material ready for you to use:
Talaris - Parenting Counts
Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning
We did a Kids First Grassroots TV show on social - emotional development, watch it by clicking here -
http://www.grassrootstv.org/Show.aspx?ShowID=10271 - it's large and may a few moments to open. Please contact Kids First for more information or to check on local parent workshops:
970-920-5363 or email@example.com
Click here to watch a video about the importance of investing in the early years - http://www.grassrootstv.org/Show.aspx?ShowID=9008