Will your toddler be starting nursery after the Christmas holidays? This is a time of big change, both for you and your little tot. There are a few ways you can help to reduce the stress and make the whole process a lot smoother for your little one, encouraging them to settle in and start enjoying their new experiences.
Preparing for the Big Day
Playing imaginary games can be a fantastic way of helping your child gain some confidence in a safe, familiar and friendly environment. Gather some of their favourite Golden Bear Toys and pretend they are the other children. You can then play through some of the activities your child may experience such as snack time, outside play, reading, painting and colouring. Tell your child about all the new toys and friends they will be able to play with and remember to try and keep any negative feelings you may have about starting nursery out of the play. If you seem excited and confident your child will pick up on these feelings too.
There are plenty of TV shows that can be used to inform your child about what they can expect too. Look out for shows such as Balamory on CBBC and Timothy Goes to School on Tiny Pop.
On the Big Day
Although you may not want to leave your child it is a good idea not to make a big deal when it comes time to say goodbye. The more you make a fuss the more unsure your child will be, making them cling on to you and not want you to leave. Give them a quick hug and a kiss and say you will see them soon and leave. It will save on the heartache for both of you. Another good tip is to keep a smile on your face and try to keep your own tears from falling until your toddler can’t see you.
If your child is nervous ask your nursery if they would be happy for your child to take in their favourite toy. This will give them something familiar to see and to play with. The toy will help to give reassurance if your child needs it and help them to feel more relaxed about being in a new environment. Perhaps choose Carrot from Chloe’s Closet, Carrot keeps Chloe safe and confident on her adventures.
Finally if your child is finding it hard to settle in don’t give up. Encourage your toddler to keep going and speak to the nursery staff if you are overly concerned. Some children are able to settle in within days, others can take a little longer. Try not to feel guilty, change just takes a little getting used to that’s all.
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