It’s not easy to alleviate those first-week jitters, but here are some ideas that will, hopefully, lessen any apprehensiveness.
Back to school shopping is an excellent way to mentally and practically prepare for the school year. It can be a fun bonding time and a way to increase excitement for your child.
A “first day of school” outfit, something that makes your child feel comfortable and confident, can create positive emotions in your child. What we wear has a surprising effect on our mood. Even if they seem nonplussed by the idea, clothes they like may still have positive effects, even if they refuse to admit it.
For students new to school– preschoolers, kindergarteners, new students– mentally preparing them may be the most effective way to lessen nervousness. If possible, tour the school before students arrive. Try to set up a brief meeting with the new teacher– just a few minutes to say hello and put a face with a name.
A friendly and familiar face can go a long way on the first day, so introducing your child to one or two of his fellow classmates can definitely help. If there aren’t any kids in the neighborhood, reach out to your child’s new teacher and ask for a recommendation. Teachers know their students and can usually pair your child with someone who will suit him/her.
Schedule a casual play date– a trip to the park or a swim in the pool. For older kids, this might seem forced or awkward; finding a summer event or sport might be a better method.