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Top 5 Tips for Easing Your Child’s First Day of School Jitters

Whether your child is coming to The Malvern School for the very first time or returning to the school year routine after summer camp fun, he or she may feel anxious about the change. With a little bit of preparation, you can help them cope with the first day of school jitters and start the year off strong. 

1. Set the tone for positivity.
Even if you feel apprehensive or emotional about your young child heading to school, one of the most important things you as a parent can do is to keep your energy positive. This sets the tone for the transition and reassures your child that experiencing new things and gaining independence is a natural – and exciting – part of growing up!

2. Listen to and acknowledge your child’s feelings.
Don’t assume you know how your child feels about starting or heading back to school. Take the time to sit down together in a relaxed setting to talk casually about how they are feeling about it. Before jumping in to offer comfort or solutions, let them talk and express themselves, and reassure them it is ok for them to feel the way they do. Let this conversation, or series of conversations, steer your efforts to help them feel comfortable and confident.

3. Read together to learn from others’ experiences.
Story books can be highly effective in helping young children learn about new experiences – and the emotions they may elicit – from afar. By centering the scenario around someone else other than themselves, they often feel more comfortable exploring and learning about something that initially scares them. Good back-to-school books include Llama Llama Misses Mama by Anna Dewdney and Maisy Goes to Preschool by Lucy Cousins.

4. Make the unfamiliar, familiar.
Take proactive steps to make the unfamiliar, familiar. Talk openly and frequently about what will happen when your child goes to school so they can begin to understand what that really means for them day to day. Then, arrange for you and your child to visit their new classroom and spend time with their new teacher. All Malvern Schools are hosting Meet & Greets before the school year begins, and we also encourage families to schedule a “Play & Stay” date, which is a great opportunity to meet teachers and classmates and participate in classroom activities.

5. Sleep on it.
Young children do better all around, especially dealing with change, when they are well rested. If your son or daughter has been on a different summertime routine, now is the time to make sure bedtime is back on track so their body and sleep schedule is adjusted by the time school begins.

Change isn’t always easy but our Directors and teachers are here as resources for you and your child. Please don’t hesitate to tap into their years of experience and expertise.

We have exciting plans in store for the year ahead and are looking forward to welcoming all of our friends on Tuesday, September 4!

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