Switching Preschools

Easing the Transitioning to a New Preschool

When to move your child:

No preschool is perfect, but when is necessary to switch schools? Change is in order if there are:

  • Health and safety issues such as unsanitary conditions or inadequate childproofing
  • High student-to-teacher ratios or frequent staff turnovers
  • Too many “timeouts” or emphasis on punishment rather than redirection
  • No curriculum, only free play
  • No time in curriculum for gross motor play (outdoor/indoor play areas)
  • Follow your instincts if something doesn’t seem right – parents know best

How to help your child in the transition to a new school:

  • Visit before your child’s first day pointing out books, toys or play areas that he/she can look forward to
  • Talk about the change in a calm, matter-of-fact way. Follow your child’s lead. Some children need to talk a lot before the first day, others may not
  • Have you child meet teachers and kids from class in advance so he/she will recognize familiar faces
  • Describe the daily schedule ahead of time so there are no surprises
  • Read a book about the first day of school, like First Day Jitters by Julie Danneberg
  • Together, plan a special way to say goodbye at drop off the first day
  • Let your child bring a special blanket, toy or stuffed animal to keep in his/her cubby to have as a security if needed