Adjusting to new routines can be a lot for little kids, especially when that new routine involves transitioning into a new daycare.
Whether it is a switch to a different daycare or it’s your child’s first time, there are some easy things you can do to help make the transition a smoother one!
How to Help Your Child Transition into a New Daycare
- Visit the Daycare with Your Child Before Starting
You can call the daycare center to schedule a visit where you and your child will get to meet the director, your child’s teacher, and the other kids in their class as well. This will give your child the chance to explore and become more familiar with their classroom as well.
Having their parent with them in a new environment can help calm a child’s nerves and make them feel safer and more comfortable.
- Start a New Routine Before the First Day of Daycare
If you have a bit of time between your first visit and your start date, you may be thinking up what your new morning routine is going to look like with your child before leaving for daycare each morning.
Don’t wait to start the new routine until the first day of daycare! Make sure you start at least a week ahead of time.
This will help your child as well by acclimating them to a new routine while also taking out one more new thing to get used to while starting the transition into a new daycare.
- Get Your Child Excited About Daycare!
Young children often react to things the way their parents or older siblings react to them since these are all new experiences for them. And attending a new daycare is no different.
Build up the experience in your child’s mind before they go. Tell them how much fun it will be, that they will make new friends, and that they will get to do fun activities and play with new toys.
All of these things can help build up a child’s excitement so they are more prepared to start at their new daycare!
- Don’t Prolong Goodbyes
The day has finally arrived, and you are walking into your new daycare center for the first time!
Despite all that you have done to prepare your child—and yourself—for this new step, your child could still have tears and uncertainty when being dropped off for the first time.
This piece of advice will be the hardest to follow, but it is one of the most helpful: don’t prolong your goodbye. As difficult as it might be, give your child a hug, a kiss, and a smile, and then leave.
Your child may continue to cry or call for you, but one of the biggest steps to them becoming comfortable in their new space is for you to leave and let the teachers take it from there. Good daycare teachers will have a lot of ways to help your child calm down and acclimate to their classroom which will help in this final stage of transitioning into a new daycare.
While this transition stage is challenging, it is usually a short stage. Patience, consistency, and reassurance will be your friends as you work through this; and in the end, you and your child will find a new rhythm that is peaceful and exciting each day!