First Day Kindergarten Jitters: How to help your anxious child?

Soon the big day is approaching. However, you find your young one anxious about the first day of your school aka “First Day Kindergarten Jitters”. To begin with, kindergarten jitters are normal; however, parents can help their children and prepare them for their big day at school.
Although your child might be already at a daycare, a babysitter, or other care facilities, the prime reason for their anxiety stems from saying goodbye to a familiar face and stepping into a new, unfamiliar world. Here are some quick tips to ease their worries and smoothen their transition.

Talk about their concerns directly.

Children often have a lot of questions and concerns about the new, unfamiliar place – school. It is an excellent idea to talk to your kids about them beforehand and help them practice addressing their concerns. For example: “Will I have a friend at my new school?” Help your kids to gain a friend by offering them tips to make a friend. “What if I get lost?” Help your kid know a label is hanging on his bag and assure him he will not get lost. Most importantly, tell your child that it is normal to have some fears and anxiety, and you are there always to help him. Please encourage him to brainstorm different ways to tackle his worries and problems.

Take them to a special back-to-school night.

Back to school are memorable and helpful, especially for the new kids joining the elementary school for the first time. It will help to meet their teachers, but it also allows teachers to break the ice. Help the child to connect with other kids, and thus seeding their friendship.

Sending along their favorite toy

You can confirm with teachers whether the school policy allows children to bring one toy from home. It offers the child a sense of security and familiarity. There is a basis of scientific evidence, and it confirms that the children who seek safety in their favorite object or toy are more secure than the children who do not. It offers them a way to cope with their fears and anxiety.

Dr. Paul Horton, a psychologist, rightly said, “…the ability to give solace to oneself is the basis of such major positive feelings as joy, awe, forgiveness, and generosity.

Read the books with them.

There were terrific books on the first day of kindergarten to calm down your child’s anxiety and prepare to be excited as he transitions into this new milestone. A few of all-time parent’s favorites are: On the First Day of Kindergarten, Kindergarten Rocks, Kindergarten, Here I Come, and The Night Before Kindergarten.

Redirecting their worries to positive aspects of school

Would you please help your child turn their fears into the fun parts of the school, such as the big playground, bright books, opportunity to ride the bus to school, yummy lunchboxes with their favorite snacks and joke cards?

Read books to your child
school supplies-class list

Involve your kid in buying the supplies for the new school

Involving your child in purchasing the supplies will trigger excitement instead of overwhelming them on their first day. Please include your child in the back-to-school preparations, like asking your child to choose the items for school supplies, labeling them. Ask for their help in packing their backpacks and lunchboxes. Not only will such activities transform their anxiety into a pleasant experience, but also they will be looking forward to their new school year.

Validate their feelings

Let your child know that it is okay to worry about their new beginning, and their parents are always there to help them. Remind them that they can always meet their old friends and at the same time, they will make many more friends in their new class. Let your child know that there will be incredible teachers at his new school who look forward to meeting them, understand them, and help them whenever they want.

Celebrate the day with them

Tell your child how proud you are of them and their accomplishments. Please make sure to open conversation with them to know about their day, talk about any new friend they made, any exciting thing about the day. In addition, also talk about if they felt low at any point of the day that made them feel, struggle, and overwhelmed. Explore their day with them and talk about any concerns they might have, and solve it together.

Sharing is caring!