We have all experienced the crushing sight of our little one’s sobbing face and temper tantrum, while dropping them off to a pre-school or a day-care. You’ d be really lucky if you have a child that turns his back to you and doesn’t even look back to you to say good-bye, as soon as he enters the school premises. Starting school should be an exciting experience to the parents and children both, but that doesn’t seem to be the case with a lot of parents.
The most common reason behind this is the separation anxiety, that most children experience during some or the other phase of their toddler-hood. Especially if you have always stayed home with your child or you have always carried him everywhere you go or he has always been surrounded with family and relatives and never been left in the care of professionals.
It is very natural for him to feel that he is suddenly being abandoned, albeit for a few hours of a day. This insecurity might turn your happy-go-lucky child into a cranky, irritated one.
Our SOS moms suggest some ideas to help you to make the schooling experience enjoyable for you and your toddler.
- Explore it further! Is your child crying to school just because of separation anxiety, or because of meeting new friends or due to the behaviour of school authorities and teachers or even bullying from other kids at school? If possible, try to be with your child as soon as the class is over and talk to her. Make her feel secure.
- Ask the child about what makes her uneasy about the school. Before checking with the school authorities, do speak once to your child
- Sometimes, it’s better to wait for a few more days or weeks until your kid shows the readiness to be without you and go to school.
- Find out from school authorities if you can participate in her class for a day or two to get the feel of how the teachers deal with the kids. You’ll also get a good idea about how other kids behave.
- Check if your child is uncomfortable with any staff or teacher or the routine of the school. It can be quite demanding on the child to suddenly start following a set routine of learning, playing, eating and even napping.
- The child may even start loving his school after a few days of crying. Just give him some adjustment period.
- Offer him a treat for a few days if he goes to school happily. Positive encouragement often achieves what rules and force can’t.
- Make sure that your child gets enough sleep and has a healthy diet, when at home. Sleep deprived and mal-nourished kids don’t make for happy students.
- Also, make sure that the reason for his crying is not some health ailment.
- Let him take a day or two off from the school, if possible. We all get bored of the monotonous routine. A break is always refreshing.
We thank our SOS moms for the tips and experiences they shared with us.
Deepa Jha, Shaily Bhatia, Sushma Malik,Sheetal Modi Bajaj, Gita Keswani, Ragini Rai, Misha Amar Bhattal, Kalvakota Vasanthi, Shriya Sharma, Keerthana R Rao.