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    Prepared by: teacher - psychologist Viktorija Ruzgut

    Kindergarten KLAUADA. www.klauada.lt

    HOW TO PREPARE YOUR CHILD FOR KINDERGARTEN?

    When parents decide to let their child attend a kindergarten they often have many concerns about how thei

    child will get used to the new environment. Obviously every parent wants this start to be as much easy as possible

    However, childs adaptation in kindergarten varies a lot and it depends on many different things. One of them is a good

    preparation for the kindergarten. How to do it?

    One or two months before kindergarten

    Consistent daily routines are extremely important in childrens life, because they give a sense of security. In

    order not to change this rhythm suddenly and not to cause additional stress, ask about schedule of the kindergarten in

    advance (When children are going to eat? When are they going to sleep?). Then try to make the childs timetable at

    home coincide with that of the kindergarten. Its best to start one or two months before attending the kindergarten.

    Take notice at what your child eats. If the dishes in kindergarten differ greatly from those served at home

    theres a chance, your child will refuse to eat unfamiliar food. Try to make food that is usually given in kindergarten, fo

    example, porridge, soup, stewed meat, fish dishes.

    Encourage your childs independence. It is very important to motivate your child to learn the most necessary

    skills at home. Let and help to learn how to dress and undress, eat with a spoon and fork, wash and dry his/her hands.

    The more your child can do by himself, the more he/she will feel confident and less often he/she will need help from

    teachers.

    Talk to your child about what he/she is going to do, if he/she faces a problem. You can say, for example: if you

    feel thirsty, go to your teacher and say: I would like to drink. You can also explain to your child, that there will be many

    more children in the group and sometimes he/she will have to wait for his/her turn. Being aware of potential difficultie

    and knowing how to deal with them your child will feel stronger.

    Tell your child what a kindergarten is and, even more importantly, what he/she is going to do there. Tel

    him/her that there will be a lot of toys, he/she will be able to draw, paint, play outside, play with other children, maybe

    dance and sing. Explain everything simply and shortly because too much information is going just to burden your child

    You can read books about attending kindergarten, if you have such. Speak positively, calmly, because in this way your

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    child will associate kindergarten with pleasant experience. On the other hand, avoid too much enthusiasm, because

    he/she will suspect that something is not right. Under no circumstances should you scare your child about

    kindergarten or talk about things that worry you in front of him/her.

    Organize more social activity. Every preschooler has to find a suitable way to interact with others. If your child i

    not used to playing with other children, he/she can find it really hard to wait for his/her turn or to share toys. Help your

    child to get used to being in a group. Plan a game with one or more peers (invite relatives or friends with children more

    often, go to play in a playground and etc.). Encourage your child to communicate, but do not interfere, unless it is

    necessary; let the child to do it independently, so that he/she could feel relaxed.

    Strengthen childs immune system. When the adaptation period begins, your childs immune system can

    weaken and become less resistant to various diseases. So, let your child walk barefoot inside at home (or outside if its

    summer). Water activities can also be very useful (shower, bath, lake, sea, swimming pool). Accustom your child to

    colder drinks (milk or juice taken from the fridge), allow him/her to enjoy a cup of ice-cream.

    It is equally important to check your own motivationdo you want to let your child to go to kindergarten?

    What are you anxious about? What are your biggest fears? Right motivation to let your child to kindergarten is when

    parents notice that their child needs other children, his/her play is more conscious; also when parents want their child

    to develop social skills, to become more independent and to prepare for school. Dont take your child to kindergarten

    just because you dont have any other options (cant find a nanny, have to get back to work), because it will be hard fo

    you to withstand childs resistance and it could be more difficult for your child to adapt, when he/she feels your

    hesitations.

    Few days before kindergarten

    Before starting to attend a kindergarten go together to see how rooms look like, where the toilet or sleepin

    room is, where children are going to wash their hands. Talk about activities that are being done there. Let your child to

    play a bit, if he/she wants. Talk to teachers. Pleasant personal contact between teacher and parents is one of the most

    important factors for easy adaptation.

    First days in kindergarten

    When you bring your child to the kindergarten tell him/her, that he/she will now be with other children and wil

    do interesting activities and that you will take him/her home later (to be more clear, you can tell what he/she is going to

    do in kindergarten and after which activity specifically you will come back). Create your own goodbye ritualit can be a

    kiss on a cheek, a wave or a hug. When you say goodbye, leave right away. You can arrange with the teacher in advance

    that, if your child begins to cry, she will take him/her in her hands (if its necessary). Let your child to cry, because it

    relaxes the tension. Too much waiting and negotiation can encourage more crying, because child understands that a

    long as he/she is crying, you will be staying.

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    Have the time in the morning to wake up calmly, to get ready, to chat a bit and to have breakfast. Avoid

    hurrying. The more calm morning you have, the easier goodbye in the kindergarten will be. Dad can also bring the child

    to the kindergarten, if possible. As it often happens, dads are more determined and firm, so morning goodbyes could be

    less painful.

    Remember that even, if you prepare right, your child will still need time to adapt to changed environment and

    people. There will be tears and anger thats normal. However, when the dark period is over, it wont take long for you

    to notice, just how much your child has grown, matured and is ready to take further challenges. Be patient and trust your

    child.

    References:

    1. Cirtautien L. Kaip paruoti vaik dareliui? // Mamos urnalas, 2012

    2. Ramokien N. Vaiko adaptacija darelyje: vertingi patarimai tvams // Zebra.lt, 2009

    3. Saat V. Adaptation to a kindergarten // International Kindergarten, 2011

    4. Adaptation of children in kindergarten. Tips for parents // School of life, 2009

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