Four Things You Can Do To Prepare Your Toddler For Preschool

Posted on: 5 February 2018

Preschool programs are a big step for a toddler, and if your child hasn't been enrolled in any type of nursery school or daycare program, it can be a challenging transition. Here are a few steps you can take to help your toddler prepare for fun and success in a preschool setting.

Practice Independent Skills

While your toddler doesn't need to be completely independent to start preschool, practicing some skills can make the transition a bit easier. Simple tasks, like putting on a jacket or washing hands, can provide excellent practice for entering preschool. Consider working on one task each week until your toddler has mastered it before moving on to another one.

Spend Some Time Apart

Your toddler may be nervous about being away from you, so it's a good idea to ease into the transition to preschool by spending some time apart. You can do this by visiting kid-friendly coffee shops that offer babysitting for children while parents enjoy a cup of coffee. You'll be close by but out of sight, and your child will know that you are in the other room. You can also practice by working with other parents to arrange play dates with you not present. Take this time to run to the grocery store or do a few errands while your toddler learns to play without you nearby.

Engage In Quiet Time

There will be times that your child will need to sit quietly to listen to stories or lessons. Take some time to practice this with your child each day. You may want to read a story in front of your toddler with him or her sitting on the floor. This can mimic the experience your toddler will have in a preschool setting. Ask your child to raise a hand if he or she has a question, and work on appropriate ways to communicate quietly with teachers.

Tour The Preschool Together

Your child will want to know where he or she will be spending each day, so consider taking several tours of the preschool before the first day. Ask if there are any open houses you can attend, and also ask if you can drop by a couple of times to let your toddler check out the classroom when there are other children there. Letting your child get familiar with these new surroundings can make the first few days of preschool go by a bit more smoothly.

Your child's preschool may have a guide to help with the transition as well, so don't hesitate to ask for advice before the first day of preschool arrives.