Your toddler’s first trip to day care is an experience that will introduce them to a whole community of friends and caregivers. This may be one of the first times your child is away from their parents and family for a significant period, which means there could be some tears and apprehension. While such responses are normal, there are ways to prepare your toddler for the adventure ahead to ensure a smoother transition. Here’s how to get them ready.
How to Prepare Your Toddler for Day Care
1. Visit the Facility Beforehand
If possible, schedule a trip to the day care prior to your child's first day and go to the facility together. Let them meet the caregivers and some of the other children. This will help them get familiar with the environment and may also drum up some excitement around their first day.
Most centers will be more than happy to have you and your child visit, and they may extend an invitation to stay for playtime, a story, or a snack with the other kids. Take advantage of these opportunities so that your toddler gets a realistic idea of what to expect.
2. Bring an Item From Home
An item from home can give a toddler a sense of security in a new environment. It calls to mind the safety and familiarity of home, which will help quell the child's anxieties and any first-time jitters they have about being in unfamiliar surroundings. A stuffed animal, doll, or small blanket can be easily carried and stored.
3. Talk Openly About Day Care
Use simple, direct language to talk to your child about what day care is like. Discuss the activities they can expect to do, the opportunities they have to make new friends, and the providers who will be looking out for them.
Listen closely to their questions and offer honest answers in words and concepts they can understand. Reassure them that their stay at day care is only temporary and that you will be there to pick them up at the end of every day.
When you're looking for a safe, special, and family-like day care in the Brookline, MA, area, trust Tiny World Child Care. Their bilingual caregivers offer early childhood programs for children ages six weeks to six years. They emphasize personal enrichment, cultural diversity, and preparation for academic achievement, all in a fun, engaging, and caring environment. Call (617) 232-0115 to learn more about their programs, or contact them online if you have questions.