From Preschool to Kindergarten: Starting School in 5 Easy Steps

Does your child get excited about the beginning of the school year or do they want to run and hide? As a parent, I know how sad and exciting starting school can be. When the new school year started for my two children, they were not excited about it at all. They did not know what to expect from the teachers or the classes. Because I believe in education wholeheartedly, I used 5 easy steps to encourage my children before school began. Those five steps were visiting the school, finding out who their teacher was for the upcoming school year, locating their classroom so they will know where to go on the first day of school, learning who their classmates are, and discussing the rules of attending school.

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The first step I used when my children started school was to visit the school where they would be attending. By visiting the school, children can see what the school looks like and what the school has to offer them. It is also a chance for parents to scope out the environment where their child will be spending the majority of their time. This will also be a great opportunity to meet the people who will be involved in your child’s daily academics.

The next step in making the transition from preschool to kindergarten a smooth one is by finding out who their teacher will be for the upcoming school year. I know in most cases, the school will not know this information right away, but if you can find out who the teacher is going to be, then you, the parent, can talk with your child about their teacher. You can get your child familiar with calling their teacher Mr. or Mrs. (the teacher’s last name) and talking about how if your child needs anything he/she should tell Mr. or Mrs. (teacher’s last name).

A third step in making the transition will be to locate the classroom where your child will be going on the first day of school. This is an important step because it will lie to rest some of the fears that you and your child might be facing. Knowing what the classroom looks like and what preparations the teacher has made for incoming students will calm both you and your child. This will also be a great opportunity for your child to see what kinds of activities the teacher will have for him or her to enjoy while attending school daily.

The fourth step in preparing your preschooler for kindergarten will be to learn who their classmates are going to be. This will be important for two reasons. First, it will allow your child to find out if he or she already knows some of his or her classmates and second, they will be able to already have a friend the first day of school. Already having a friend on the first day of school will allow your child to be calm and excited and want to be at school.

The final step in getting your preschooler ready for kindergarten is to discuss rules of going to school. Whether he or she has been attending preschool everyday or just two or three days a week, attending regular school and following the routines of a new teacher can be overwhelming for your child. As a parent, it is important to let your child know what kind of behavior is expected from him or her. Not only will there be new rules and procedures to follow in the classroom, but in the whole school as well. Knowing what is expected will get your child started on the right foot when starting a whole new phase in their life.

To recap, your preschooler will be more excited about starting kindergarten if he or she knows what the school looks like, where his or her classroom is located, if she knows any classmates, what kinds of activities the teacher has for him or her to do in the classroom, and finally what rules and behaviors are expected in the school building. All of these things will make the transition from preschool to kindergarten easy for your child as well as you.

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