A new school year, especially after this past year, can bring about new anxieties in little ones. Here are some simple ways to help put them at ease:
- Develop a goodbye ritual, such as a secret handshake, to do during drop-offs
- Keep promises of when you will be back and be specific about when you will return to pick up your child.
- When you tell your child you’re leaving, do not stall. As difficult as this can be, making it a bigger deal or drawing the process out can often times increase their anxiety.
- Talk about what your child may see in their school this year – a new lunch routine? Teachers wearing face coverings?
- If possible, send them to school with a memento from home, such as a favorite stuffed animal toy, or blanket.
- Practice spending time away from your child – short times at first, and then gradually increase the time.
- Have some fun before leaving the house for school! Laughing or dancing around together can settle their nerves and help prevent a meltdown at drop off.