As we prepare to release our fall line, we have been busy getting our kids ready to head back-to-school. Like us, we’re sure your little ones have either just started back to school or about to have their first day back. We know what a hectic time of year it is so we have compiled a list of back-to-school tips for pre-schoolers. Take a look at these helpful tidbits and don’t forget to stock up on our clearance sale and stay-tuned for our new fall styles! We can’t wait to help you get your kids outfitted for a successful school year!
Back-to-School Tips for Preschoolers
- Ask the preschool teacher for a class list. Maybe you could organize a class playdate before and just after school starts so the kids can get to know each other in a relaxed, less formal setting. It’s a great way for parents to get to know one another as well.
- If that isn’t possible, see if you can arrange a one-on-one playdate with a friend or two that you know will be in the class. Not sure if you know anyone at your child’s school yet? Community parent groups on Facebook are a great way to figure out which kids will be attending which schools.
- While preschool generally isn’t a place where a huge focus is placed on academics, you can review some basics with your child—their first and last name, their teacher’s name, the room number of their classroom, the name of their school, their bus route letter or number if they have one, etc.
- Play school! Take turns with your little one being the teacher and the student. Practice skills like sitting still, raising their hand when asking a question, asking to go to the bathroom, or answering a question, eating a snack (let your preschooler work on opening up everything that they need), and moving from activity to activity, such as going outside to play and working on a craft.
- Brainstorm food ideas. If you’ll have to provide a lunch or snack for your child at preschool, talk to your child about what types of things they’ll like to eat. Better to have a plan in hand ahead of time, rather than have to scramble at the last minute when school starts.
- If you think separation anxiety might be an issue, give your child something of yours to keep in his or her backpack, such as a special keychain or photograph. In addition, have your child give you something special of theirs to hold on to while they are at school. This way your child will know that you are always thinking of them while they are away.
- Go back-to-school shopping. Buy a special first-day-of-school outfit and backpack. Let your child have a say in what you are purchasing. Check with the school to see if they require anything, such as a nap mat, reusable water bottle or lunchbox. Even if your child doesn’t need supplies for the preschool classroom, if you are able, consider taking advantage of deep back-to-school sales that retailers usually offer and keep some supplies at home for your child to color, draw, and have fun with.
- Become a labeler. Spend some time together carefully writing your child’s first and last name on all of your new purchases. Include jackets and sweatshirts too.
- Sit down and come up with a plan of action in case of emergency. Who will your emergency contacts be? What will happen if you can’t get your child from school? It’s better to be prepared ahead of time, so in case an emergency does arise, you aren’t fretting over the details. And while you never want to make your child nervous, you can let them know that it is possible that sometimes Grandma (or whoever) will pick them up if you cannot.
- Prepare your child for the transitions that occur in the preschool classroom (play time to circle time, music time to lunch time) by starting to give warnings when the time you are spending doing whatever you are doing is about to end. For example, “Sweetie, in five minutes we will need to leave the playground so we can go to the store.” “Honey, ten minutes from now we are going to start to get ready for bed.”
- If your child is newly potty trained, make sure they are comfortable with how going to the bathroom will work at their school. Will they need to raise their hand and ask? Can they just go without telling anyone? Is there a lock on the door? These are questions to find out from your child’s teacher.
- See if your library offers a story time where your preschooler can practice listening to someone other than you read out loud. This is also good practice for sitting in a circle with other children and learning how to sit quietly and follow directions. Libraries also often offer workshops and classes were parents sit another part of the library while the kids work on an activity with the teacher. This is a great way to practice being separated for short periods of time.
- Think about tasks that you regularly do for your preschooler, such as picking out clothes, helping them get dressed, or setting and cleaning up the snack. Let your preschooler start to take on some of these responsibilities themselves. Maybe the tasks won’t exactly mimic what they do in school, but you are encouraging independence, which is important.
- Talk to your preschooler about your own preschool experiences. Pull out old pictures and papers and have fun walking down memory lane together.
- Understand that your child starting school will be a transition for you too! If all of your children will be occupied during the day, schedule some activities for yourself to keep you busy, from taking an exercise class, to meeting up with friends for a late breakfast.
- Read books about starting school. Books are a great way to help kids anticipate what will happen once school starts. Talk to your librarian about appropriate titles to read with your little one. Some popular titles include:
- The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn
- Will I Have a Friend? by Miriam Cohen
- David Goes to School by David Shannon
- First Day of School by Anne Rockwell
- It’s Time for Preschool by Esme Raj Codell
*Castles & Crowns specializes in smocked, appliquéd and monogrammable children’s clothing in all sizes. We are recognized for our classic styles, unique fabrics, quality construction, fast service and affordable pricing. We are the top Gulf Coast based children’s clothing company and we look forward to outfitting your children in our adorable clothes! Don’t forget to check out our biggest online sale happening right now!